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September 22, 2022

Can You Paint in High Humidity and Hot Temperature in Hawaii?

Can You Paint in High Humidity and Hot Temperature in Hawaii?

Humidity and painting outdoors are not the best pair when one embarks on a painting project. In the tough climate of Hawaii, the level of humidity can become a grave obstacle to that perfect paint job. Painting when humidity is high will affect the appearance of the paint, its durability, and overall quality. Painting in humid weather is possible but many people opt to rely on professionals such as Hawaii’s local exterior painting service for the best results.

The Top Reasons Why Painting in Humid Conditions Is a Problem

Can you paint in high humidity? Yes. However, it is crucial to understand how painting when humidity is high will affect your results. There are certain tips to follow that professional painters have discovered which make painting in humid conditions not just possible, but significantly more effective. High humidity will make the water or oil within the paint evaporate slower, which means the paint can’t dry properly and will form a hard surface that you don’t want.

Does Humidity Affect Painting?

Painting in high humidity is not ideal, but at times it still needs to be done. The greatest issue with it is that high humidity causes surfaces to sweat and remain damp. Painting a damp surface leads to durability and quality issues with the painting project.

Moldy Surfaces Brought on By Moisture

painting in humidity

Painting in humidity can sometimes mean working with damp surfaces. These damp surfaces are caused by moisture build-up and this in turn can cause mold to grow in between the layers of paint which can be extremely hazardous.

Surfaces Will Not Dry Quickly

Water and oil-based paints can struggle to dry in humid conditions because the water or oil may not evaporate quickly; this could lead to a jelly-type substance which will affect the appearance of the paint.

Swelling of the Surface May Occur

Painting when humidity is high can have undesirable repercussions on wood surfaces and the durability of the paint job will suffer because of it. When there is a high content of moisture in the air, paint on wood surfaces can swell which can lead to cracks that may need to be repainted sooner than anticipated.

Painting Products May Not Stick onto Metal Surfaces

Painting and humidity are not compatible when it comes to painting wood surfaces, but this becomes nearly impossible when attempting to paint metal surfaces. Paint will not adhere easily to wood on extremely humid days, but it may not adhere at all to metal. For metal surfaces, it is best to wait for drier days rather than waste your time, money, and energy on a fruitless endeavor.

Optimum and Maximum Humidity Levels for Painting

painting with high humidity
  • Optimum Humidity:

Humidity level for painting is critical to a successful painting project. The best humidity for painting rests around 40% to 50% humidity. Levels ranging between these two percentiles optimize the results and the quality of your project. For a durable paint job, it is essential to paint in drier conditions which will allow the paint to cure quickly.

  • Maximum Humidity:

Humidity plays an intricate role when it comes to painting successfully adhering to a surface which is why it is important to embark on a painting project when the conditions are not too humid to paint. When humidity levels reach 70%, this will affect the curing process, paints will take too long to dry. If the humidity levels exceed 85% then the paint will not solidify nor adhere to the surface.

Temperature and Humidity

Painting temperature and humidity play an important role when it comes to exterior painting projects, timing is everything. The best time to start painting in a day is when the temperatures start rising which is in the late afternoon hours, this will prevent paint from blistering, cracking as it dries, or peeling off.

Humidity Temperature
Chemical compound of the paint can affect its drying ability and impact its quality. Extreme temperatures will negatively impact the paint. If the temperatures are too hot, the paint will dry too quickly and if the weather is too cold, it will not dry.
High This will add moisture to the paint causing it to not dry properly. Discoloration can occur.
Discoloration in the form of white or brown streaks is likely to occur. Cracks can appear and the paint might even peel off.
Moisture will change the texture of the paint, reducing its quality. Bumps and blisters are likely to occur.
Low This will cause the paint to dry very quickly leading to cracks and even causing the paint to peel off prematurely. The paint will not dry in a uniform way causing inconsistencies in the quality and appearance of the paint.
Durability and quality may also be affected in conditions that are too dry. Spots and cracks may occur from temperatures that are too cold.

The Optimal Paints for Hawaii Weather Conditions

The weather conditions in Hawaii can be unforgiving when it comes to painting and home renovations. Knowing which products to use depending on your geographic location can prevent issues in the long run.

Paints that Are Ideal for a Wet Climate (Hilo, Hamakua, Puna)

In East Hawaii, latex or oil-based paint is recommended. It is ideal to paint a coat of primer and follow it up with two coats of finish for the best result.

Paints that Are Ideal for a Dry Climate (Kohala, Kona, Ka’u)

In the part of the island that receives sun in the mornings and rain in the afternoons, it is critical to choose an oil-based paint for wood with a 2-part epoxy sealer. It is also recommended to add mildewicide to the paint to prevent mold.

Paints that Are Ideal for a Climate That Is Wet and Dry (Waimea)

painting in high humidity

Humidity for painting is an issue, this becomes a real problem in an area that has both wet and dry climates such as Waimea. A Zinsser paint is recommended to ensure the best results for this type of climate.

Paints that Are Ideal for Hawaii’s Climate

  • Benjamin Moore & Co: These high-quality exterior paints and primers are often used by professionals. These paints are easy to handle and provide durability.
  • Pratt & Lambert Paints: These premium paints and primers are perfect for interiors and exteriors; they offer a wide selection of colors.
  • Rust-Oleum: This brand offers protective paints against rust with its additives which makes this brand an excellent choice for humidity and painting outdoors.
  • Sikkens Stains: Among one of the best exterior paints for high humidity, this brand is durable and offers a satin-like finish which makes this the number one choice for many.
  • Zinsser: This premium brand is a bit expensive, but its performance is excellent. Known for its adhesive properties, durability, and finish, this brand offers primers for every surface.

How to Paint in High Humidity-Tips

Humidity for painting projects is a real challenge. It is not impossible but certain tips can help you ensure that you get the best results.

Paint While the Temperature Is on The Rise

Painting in humid weather means that timing is everything. When painting your exterior make sure to start painting as the temperature rises to ensure that all dew has disappeared from the surface you intend to paint.

Test Moisture of Your Surface

Painting in humid conditions means that you must test your surface for moisture before applying any paint. The drier the surface, the better the paint will adhere to the surface.

Paint In the View of The Sun

painting and humidity

Painting while following the sun is a great tip. Moving from the East side of your house towards the West side means you paint on a drier surface and the paint will dry in a uniform way.

Use Only Thin Coats

Painting in humidity can be tricky, but using thin coats of paint means that coats will dry faster. If necessary, you can apply more layers but thin ones.

Ideal Painting Conditions

The best times to paint outside are either the summer or fall months, as during this period, the humidity to paint tends to be at its lowest and the weather is comfortable. In warmer climates, it is recommended to opt for the fall to avoid the heat.  

Does Humidity Affect Interior Painting Projects?

Painting when it’s humid is challenging when painting outdoors, but indoors it becomes less of an issue. The interior of homes doesn’t get the same humidity as the outside area of a home. In addition, it is possible to control humidity levels indoors which makes interior house painting easier.

Perfect Painting Results Regardless of Humidity

It is possible to paint in humid conditions, even in Hawaii. You need to be aware of the levels of humidity, the timing of the painting project, the thin layers of paint, the quality of the paint, and other tips mentioned above.

Don’t let the weather stop you, contact our professionals and schedule an estimate with Oahu Pro Painters today.

Sign Up For A Free Estimate Online Today, Or Call Us At 808-468-5604

Sign Up For A Free Estimate Online Today, Or Call Us At 808-468-5604

Sign Up For A Free Estimate Online Today, Or Call Us At 808-468-5604

Sign Up For A Free Estimate Online Today, Or Call Us At 808-468-5604

Sign Up For A Free Estimate Online Today, Or Call Us At 808-468-5604

Sign Up For A Free Estimate Online Today, Or Call Us At 808-468-5604

Sign Up For A Free Estimate Online Today, Or Call Us At 808-468-5604

Can You Paint in High Humidity and Hot Temperature in Hawaii?
Written By:
Karina Van Zandt

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