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How Long Does it Take for Interior Paint to Dry in the San Francisco Bay Area?

How Long Does it Take for Interior Paint to Dry in the San Francisco Bay Area?

There are several factors that determine how long it might take interior paint to dry in the San Francisco Bay Area. Humidity and temperature are two of the biggest factors. Color, sheen, type, and even your application technique also affect the drying process.

 

Drying Paint

The biggest effect on how long it will take interior paint to dry in the San Francisco Bay Area is humidity and temperature. Humidity causes any paint job to take longer to dry. The more moisture there is in the air, the longer the process will take because the liquid in the paint will evaporate slower. For example, an interior painting job in the desert will dry significantly faster than an interior job in a rainforest. 

In San Francisco the relative humidity tends to be between 84% and 62%. Ideal humidity level painting conditions fall between 55% to 80%, making San Francisco a generally great place to do interior painting year around.  Keep in mind that humidity tends to be significantly greater in the early mornings so when humidity levels are unusually high, it can be a good idea to paint a little later in the day. Using a fan is another way of speeding up liquid evaporation.

 

Curing Paint

Curing is also a factor to be considered when getting interior paint to dry in the San Francisco Bay Area. When comparing the drying properties of oil and latex, it’s easy to get confused.  Water based latex paint dries faster than oil. But people often assume that because latex paint dries faster than oil based paint, latex is ultimately the fastest. This is not the case; while latex does dry faster, it cures much slower.  Oil based paint will cure in 3 to 4 days under ideal conditions, while it will usually take latex paint up to a month to cure. A paint job isn’t complete until the paint has properly cured, and placing furniture or heavy objects on a surface that has not finished this process can lead to damages on both the paint surface and the surface of the object.

 

Time Frame and Other Considerations

In ideal conditions interior latex paint takes about an hour to dry, while interior oil takes 3 to 4 hours to dry.  If you’re doing more than one coat, allow 3 to 4 hours in between coats for latex and at least 8 hours for oil. To speed up drying time, when applying the paint, make sure that your technique leaves a thin film and not a thick one (using a simple paint brush usually ensures a thin film). Surface plays a role also. Paint dries faster on porous surfaces like drywall because the surface absorbs some of the moisture. Lastly, flatter sheens (flat and eggshell) dry slower than shinier ones (satin, semi-gloss and high gloss). Tint can also affect drying time, so deeper colors (which have more tint) can take a bit longer. 


MB Jessee is always available to assist you in any painting job in the San Francisco Bay Area! Please don’t hesitate to give us a call at 510-655-7000!

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