You undoubtedly already know that paints designed for outdoor use are inherently more resistant to the weather, which may lead you to question if the same benefits could be brought inside using the same paint.
Paints explicitly designed outdoors are fortified with various ingredients and binders that enable them to withstand the elements.
However, it can seem like a bright idea to use paint designed for use outdoors indoors, particularly in rooms such as the kitchen and the bathroom, which are prone to high levels of humidity and mold growth.
On the other hand, this is a different procedure. So, can you use exterior paint inside?
This article takes a look at the characteristics of paints intended for use outside, as well as the reasons why certain paints should not be used indoors.
VIDEO: Exterior paint On Interior Walls
Can You Use Outdoor Paint Inside?
It is feasible to paint indoor walls and furniture using paint meant for the exterior, although it is not typically suggested.
However, these paints should never be used inside a building because of the potent combination of volatile organic compounds (VOCs), additives, binders, and pigments included in exterior paints.
This formulation renders outdoor paints pliable and malleable, which confers upon them the capacity to survive dramatic temperature shifts and more severe conditions.
As a consequence of this, the paint is typically more long-lasting than the majority of interior paints.
Unfortunately, outside paint can release harmful vapors into the air even after curing. Because of this, the paint will continue to give out volatile organic compounds until fully cured. Note that although paint might dry in two to three days, the curing process takes significantly longer.
As a result, utilizing an outside paint indoors can result in the continued production of harmful volatile organic compounds for several weeks.
These volatile organic compounds are generally hazardous to humans and animals and can make them sick.
By painting the interior of your home with exterior-grade paint, you put your family at risk of being exposed to the paint fumes that are released during the curing process of these paints, which increases the possibility that they will suffer from serious illnesses.
When Should You Bring Paint From the Outside In?
There are a few exceptions to the rule that states it is not advisable to apply paint designed for the exterior on the interior of a building.
The following are the conditions under which it is acceptable to apply paint designed for external usage inside.
If you paint the interior of an outdoor facility, such as a shed or another structure, you should use paint designed for exterior use.
The structure might be a detached garage or a cabana beside the pool, but no one would sleep there. In addition, because this kind of room is used so infrequently, it is unlikely that your family or pets will be harmed by the harmful gases that come from it.
Because you and your family will not be using the room, there is a low risk of exposure to volatile organic compounds (VOCs).
Therefore, painting an interior space with exterior paint would be an excellent method to use any extra paint that might otherwise be thrown away.
If you are not using the space for several weeks or months, you should paint it with exterior paint.
It takes many weeks for paints intended for use outside to be off-gas. But, at this moment, they create poisonous vapors that, if inhaled, can make a person sick.
If you have an outdoor building or storage area, you can keep away from for a few weeks; then it is safe to use outdoor paint in those spaces. In the meantime, you can always vent the gases out of the building by opening the windows while it is being repaired.
Paints are made with components that, when used indoors, are more likely to cause injury than when used outside, where there is more airflow due to the absence of closed-in spaces.
Therefore, opening the windows will increase airflow and enable the volatile organic compounds released by these paints to escape.
Although you are applying the paint inside, reducing the amount of time you spend in the area where it is being used reduces the amount of time you are exposed to the fumes produced by the paint.
Is it Unsafe to Bring Paint from the Outside into the House?
If you paint the interior of your home using exterior paints, you could put your family at risk of exposure to volatile organic compounds, which these paints produce while curing.
In addition to being filled with chemicals and binders, outdoor paints release harmful vapors for several weeks after they have dried.
Using paints that emit volatile organic compounds (VOCs) indoors can be risky since people and their pets can become ill from being exposed to the fumes produced by these paints.
The paints are made to be used outside where there is ample ventilation, which helps to dissipate the volatile organic compounds (VOCs), rendering them harmless.
When applying these paints inside, you need to take significant measures, which may not be feasible in a household with children or pets.
In addition, these hazardous paint fumes can linger for as long as six months within an enclosed indoor space if they are not adequately ventilated.
This could imply being exposed to potentially hazardous vapors for an extended period. In addition, the home heating, ventilation, and air conditioning system can also circulate the fumes from these paints, spreading the threat more evenly.
There is no upper limit to the amount of damage to one’s health caused by such exposure. For example, when standing on a ladder, inhaling the fumes from these paints can cause individuals to get lightheaded or dizzy, which can have potentially disastrous consequences.
Applying paint from the exterior of the house to the interior of the house might therefore be hazardous on numerous levels:
The volatile organic compounds these paints release can put people and their pets at risk of various illnesses.
They may have headaches, nausea, lightheadedness, irritation of the eyes and throat, respiratory difficulties, and other more significant symptoms and affect those whose immune systems are already compromised.
In addition, continuous exposure to these volatile organic compounds (VOCs) has been linked to an increased risk of cancer and other serious illnesses.
When applying these paints, the individual doing so may experience dizziness and lightheadedness due to the fumes given off by the paints.
Because of this, there is a possibility that the person will sustain physical injuries, such as falling down the ladder. When something like this occurs in enclosed settings indoors, significantly when the paint is applied using paint sprayers, the risk of exposure is increased.
When working with paint designed for the exterior of a building, professional painters frequently shield themselves from the fumes by wearing respirators or specialized masks.
When working with a sprayer, it is essential to have this level of protection.
The smell of outside paint can be overpowering. People who are allergic to these things may get allergic reactions.
Unfortunately, the smells these paints give off can persist in enclosed indoor environments for a considerable time.
If a person has allergies to related substances, it might be a disaster because it could trigger allergic reactions.
Paint on the Interior and Exterior Have Different Properties
Most do-it-yourselfers know that exterior paint and interior paint are distinct, primarily due to the differences in the requirements of their respective containers. But are you familiar with the distinctions between the two groups of paint?
Most interior paint does not contain latex.
If you have ever painted an interior room, you have probably observed that most interior paints are acrylic latex. On the other hand, the formula for the paint often does not include latex.
Most exterior paints are acrylic latex, although their formulations include the latex component. Adding resin to exterior paint allows it to resist the elements and makes it flexible enough to survive the wide swings in temperature that occur outside.
In any event, when wet, acrylic latex paints for the interior and exterior are both water-soluble. The distinction between the two categories of paint becomes more apparent when the paints are dry.
Because of these seemingly insignificant but significant distinctions, exterior acrylic latex paint with a high-gloss finish is frequently referred to as acrylic enamel finish. This is particularly true for high-gloss alternatives.
In addition, most acrylic enamel paint can be utilized on outdoor surfaces and interior surfaces such as walls and ceilings. Wood siding, stucco, brick, and fiber cement are some other surfaces suitable for painting with this product.
It may take longer for the paint used on the exterior to cure than the paint used on the interior.
Paint primer designed outdoors typically contains several additional components, such as binders and various other additives that affect the paint’s curing period.
Although these additives make the product more durable and suited for use in demanding outdoor situations, the paint’s drying time is lengthened due to its presence.
As a consequence of this, the curing process for matte paint used outside can take many months. In addition, in many cases, it will continue to release harmful vapors throughout the curing time.
Therefore, these paints designed for use outside are not appropriate for use on interior wall for several reasons, including this one.
In contrast to exterior paint, inside paint has a relatively low level of odor.
Paints for indoor use have fewer chemicals, and binders added, resulting in a significantly lower odor that is good for indoor air quality. In addition, because of their chemical nature, they will quickly stop giving off any discernible odor after being applied to interior walls or other indoor surfaces.
Paint designed for the exterior of a building has a more significant number of ingredients, some of which are hazardous, such as UV blockers and fungicides.
In addition, long after they have been applied, they typically retain a potent stench that might trigger allergic reactions in individuals susceptible to odors.
There are significant amounts of volatile organic chemicals in the exterior paint.
Before thoroughly drying, exterior paint typically emits volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Depending on the type of masonry paint, the curing process might take a few weeks to many months in warmer temperatures.
These volatile organic compounds have been shown to have a shelf life of up to six months when employed in enclosed indoor areas.
In comparison, the amount of hazardous compounds found in indoor paint is significantly lower. On the other hand, exposure to interior paints will typically not generate any visible adverse effects, in contrast to external paints.
When you inhale the fumes from outside paint of your exterior wall, you may have lightheadedness, dizziness, nausea, and headaches. Even in open-air environments, professional painters shield their faces with safety masks or respirators whenever they use these paints.
The chemical makeup of paint used for the interior and exterior painting of a building is different.
Different kinds of paint designed for use indoors and outdoors have varied chemical makeups and various qualities because they are made for use in different environments.
Paint designed for the exterior of a building is made to be resistant to fading caused by the sun, chipping, cracking, damage caused by water, and discoloration caused by molds and other fungi.
Paint designed for interior painting use is developed to be easy to clean without causing the paint coat to become damaged.
As a consequence of this, these paints can be cleaned with soap and water. Their formulation is also stain-resistant, making it easier to maintain a clean environment.
In general, the chemical makeup of interior paints is friendlier than that of their counterparts used on the exterior of buildings.
FAQ on Can You Use Outdoor Paint Inside
What will happen if I bring paint intended for the exterior into the house?
According to Savino, “the compounds in exterior paint that prevent mildew can induce odors and even allergic reactions when applied in confined areas,” and he says thus about the usage of anti-mildew paint. True enamel or oil-based paints should never be used inside of a building due to the hazardous fumes that they give out. Furthermore, depending on where you reside, it may be against the law to use these paints inside or outside of a building.
How dangerous is the paint used outside?
Xylene, formaldehyde, benzene, and ethyl acetate are examples of typical volatile organic compounds. Specifically, exterior paints are laden with fungicides, which can protect your property against the growth of mildew and fungus but also give off strong aromas that can be toxic. Because of this, you should never bring paint meant for the outdoors into your home.
Is there a difference between the paint used indoors and the paint used outside?
Paints come in a wide variety of types, each of which is designed specifically to fulfill a certain need. Paint for the interior of a building is designed to be scrubbed, to resist discoloration, and to be cleaned. Paints designed for the exterior of a building are formulated to resist fading as well as mildew.
Is the Sherwin Williams paint designed for outside usage OK for use indoors?
Sherwin-Williams Snap Dry is an exterior paint with a short drying period of one hour, making it ideal for painting front doors, whether on the inside or the outside. Sherwin-Williams makes a primer called Porch Primer that may be used indoors on floors. Because it dries rapidly and keeps up well against the elements, Snap Dry paint is an excellent choice for use on front doors.
Is it possible to apply paint designed for outdoor use on walls inside?
It is feasible to paint indoor walls and furniture using paint meant for the exterior, although doing so is not something that is typically suggested. Because of the strong combination of volatile organic compounds (VOCs), additives, binders, and pigments that are included in exterior paints, these paints should never be used inside of a building.