I just got off the phone with ColorPlace tech support. I called the
number listed on one of the gallons of their latex porch floor paint I
had in the basement. I asked the guy who makes their paint. He told
me Sherwin Williams.
That's just one data point, and I wouldn't take it to the bank. While
I was on the phone with him, I asked about the application directions
listed on the label. The label said to use an oil-based primer to
prime bare wood before applying the paint. Now, WalMart doesn't sell
an oil-based primer rated for horizontal wood surfaces exposed to
weather and foot traffic, so what am I supposed to use? He recommended
I pick something up at Lowe's. I had already looked at all the primers
at Lowe's and I've yet to find one that is rated for foot traffic. I
thanked him and said good-day.
Now this is VERY interesting, because about a week ago I had a
conversation with Sherwin Williams tech support about some porch floor
paint they make for the local DoItBest hardware/paint store here in
town. This stuff costs $25 per gallon, and nowhere on the label did it
mention priming. So I asked whether this was an oversight, or if they
really didn't want me to prime the wood. The answer: DON'T prime the
wood. Reason: their research shows that their porch floor latex holds
up better when applied to bare wood. The primers don't hold up well to
the foot traffic combined with the expansion/contraction of the wood
due to moisture, and the primer tends to separate from the wood.
This parallels my own personal experience. I oil-primed and
latex-topcoated some porch steps two years ago (because that's what the
label said to do), and the primer blistered off within a year. So this
year I hand-scraped and power-washed the steps and the breezeway, and
put down the porch floor latex without any primer. It should be
interesting to see what happens.
Wow, that is very interesting. Not using a primer on bare wood goes
against everything I've ever heard on the topic. My personal
experience is that the oil primer holds and the paint wears off. I
pretty much just accept that my porch needs to be top coated every two
years. I've always assumed that porch floor coating is an area that
modern materials science still hasn't found the ideal solution for.
I know with oil primer that's it's crucial that your wood be bone dry.
Any moisture will interfere with adhesion and penetration. This is
often a problem with horizontal wood, especially when it's not
properly sloped and shaded from direct sunlight by a porch roof.
Thanks for sharing the follow-up.
I wouldn't mind topcoating the porch floor every two years, just as
long as I didn't have to get down on my hands and knees for hours
scraping off blistering primer. What a mess!
What oil primer did you use, and what kind of wood do you have?
Transparent stains don't need primer, and won't blister or flake.
So you just have to topcoat.
Solid stains generally don't need primer either, and a _good_ one
won't flake, so topcoating is fine.
For insurance, we always use transparent stain for decking, and
solid stain for verticals and railings.
We've not had to scrape anything. Yet...
Chris Lewis, Una confibula non set est
It\'s not just anyone who gets a Starship Cruiser class named after them.
Are you suggesting that I can "prime" the bare wood with a transparent
stain, and then put latex topcoat over that?
Well, everything I ever read or was told by "tech support" people is
contrary to that (topcoating stain).
Nevertheless, several weeks ago I used Cabot semi-solid stain under a
latex topcoat on some porch steps just to see how ot would hold up
compared to past efforts. I'll have a pretty good idea next Spring.
I want to make sure I understand correctly what you are saying. Are
you saying you put down transparent stain, then latex topcoat over
that, on the deck surface?
I use "toner" stain (between clear and semi-transparent) on my deck and
of course there's no peeling or blistering. I just have to re-apply
ever couple of years. I don't mind that.
But on my exposed wrap-around porch, the previous owner had painted it
to compliment the house color, so I don't have the option of reverting
to stain. Stripping the entire porch back to bare wood is out of the
question. It's over 60 feet long and 8 feet wide.
I'm not sure I remember, but I'm guessing it was just Sears
Weatherbeater oil because that's what I have in my basement at the
moment. I usually use that for exterior priming, although I understand
that BM makes a much better product. As for the wood type, again, I'm
not sure. I'm guessing it's just ordinary tongue and groove pine.
If you really want to make your paint job last, you might look into
some industrial priming solutions. There's something called Aluthane
that is supposed to be perfect for less than ideal wood surface
conditions. From what I've read on it, it doesn't readily accept a
latex top coat but a good scratch sanding might help that.
I just found a product by Wolman called "Woodlife Classic". It is a
water-base clear wood sealer that is latex-paintable. I called Wolman
tech support and they assured me that it is rated for horizontal
surfaces with foot traffic.
Has anybody had any experience with this product? My intent would be
to use it to seal the nooks and crannies in my weathered wood porch
floor (e.g between boards and at the base of railing posts where they
sit on the porch floor) before topcoating with a quality latex porch
In over 25 years of professional painting experience I have used many
brands of paint. Overall I prefer Benjamin Moore for many reasons. I
actually end up saving money [even though the paint costs more per
gallon than average paint] because I need less, I don't need to recoat
to get a good hide. I recently tried Behr paint (homeowner bought it)
and it was so bad I got a full refund for the client. I have had
similar experience with Glidden, except their primers seem to be pretty
Rodda, Parker Paint, and Sherwin Williams are all "ok" paint but truly
nothing comes close to Ben Moore.
Scott Townsend wrote:
A lot of folks have praised Benjamin Moore paint but they all seem to
cite the same reason: it hides well. How well a paint "hides" during
initial application is only one measure of the quality of the paint.
Equally important, or arguably far more important, is how well does it
hold up over time. How does the fading and peeling resistance of
Benjamin Moore compare to the competition? That's tougher to answer, I
know, but it's a more important consideration for many people than
whether or not you have to go over it a second time.
I've never understood the "hides well" argument. I rarely change
exterior colors so that's never a problem for re-painting, but for new
wood, doesn't everyone use a primer the same color or a touch lighter
than the final paint color? I'm painting my house a deep red (same as
before) and California makes a colored primer called "Russet", which is
a shade lighter than the paint. I'm getting fantastic results with one
coat of primer and one coat of paint. We'll see how it lasts. Even when
I couldn't get a pre-mixed colored primer I had tint added to the
primer to make it the right shade. I've always done it this way. Isn't
this standard practice? What am I missing? Hilary
I consider myself INCREDIBLY lucky that the California paint
distributor is closer to my house than any other brand name paint
distributor or any big box store. The price is about $39/gallon, but
hey, who cares about the cost of the paint when the real cost is the
time and effort in prep. If it really lasts the 10 years Consumer
Reports says it can, then it's money VERY well spent. The fact that it
goes on smoothly with no drips or splatters and covers beautifully in
one coat doesn't upset me either :)
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