Is it okay to paint interiors in the winter?

Fall & Winter Painting

If you’re having interiors painted and you normally turn the heat down in certain rooms to save energy, turn it up. Paint should never be applied at under 50 degrees and ideally not under 60. Take into account the temp of the walls, which in winter can be colder than the room air temp. Keeping rooms temperate will allow paint to dry faster and deliver the best results.

People choose to have the interiors of their homes painted in the winter for a variety of reasons. During the summers there are vacations and travel; parties with guests can happen throughout the warm months; endless activities may be arranged. Also, paint crews may not be as available when the weather’s nice and crews are engaged heavily in exterior painting projects.

Under the proper circumstances and when you have experienced painters on the job, winter interior painting can be a perfect arrangement. Here’s what we mean by proper circumstances.

Ideally paint should be applied in temperatures above 60 degrees. Painting at temperatures below that, and especially below 50 degrees, can result in adherence problems and longer drying times, which means a longer wait to set the room back up again. Most homes during the winter don’t have internal temperatures below 50 or 60 degrees. But what about the walls?

If you’re in the middle of a cold snap, the outside chill may permeate the exterior of the home and cause significant cooling of the walls. In order for paint to adhere properly (and maintain its quality appearance for as long as the paint’s manufacturer says it should), the wall temperature is important, just like the air temperature.

Turning up the thermostat while professional painting crews are applying interior paint and for approximately 36 hours after they’re finished might help if the walls are excessively cold. This will create an ideal atmosphere for the new paint. (Needless to say, don’t crank the heat up to 95 – you might suffocate the painters!)

So this brings us back to our original question: Is it okay to paint interiors in the winter? It definitely is, as long as the indoor air and wall temperatures are consistent with the paint manufacturer’s recommendations and humidity is at a moderate or low level.


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