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Old 10-20-2012, 09:25 AM   #1
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WHat could i paint a very humid tropical fish room with?


I run an aquatic wholesaler and we have a tropical room heated to 26c with 80-90% humidity.

What could I paint the walls with? They are brick walls with plaster on.

They are currently painted with mould resistant bathroom emulsion paint but the external walls (which are not cavity walls) get condensation on them in the winter and gradually go mouldy?

Is there anything anyone could recommend?
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Old 10-20-2012, 09:30 AM   #2
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WHat could i paint a very humid tropical fish room with?


Thats a tough one. And seeing you are from the other side of the pond- i would recommend going to a quality paint store and asking to talk to a paint rep that would carry specialty coatings. here I would say Sherwin Williams- but go beyond a store employee.
They should be able to hook you up.

I'm sure it will be a system- primer and paint combo.
Can the room be made not humid during paint application? Ventilation will also be very important.

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Old 10-20-2012, 10:41 AM   #3
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WHat could i paint a very humid tropical fish room with?


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Originally Posted by aquascape View Post
I run an aquatic wholesaler and we have a tropical room heated to 26c with 80-90% humidity.

What could I paint the walls with? They are brick walls with plaster on.

They are currently painted with mould resistant bathroom emulsion paint but the external walls (which are not cavity walls) get condensation on them in the winter and gradually go mouldy?

Is there anything anyone could recommend?
Here's the problem - mold resistant paints do nothing to reduce the number of airborne spores in the environment...they only keep the mildew from colonizing on its' surface. That may sound ideal but all you really accomplish is to move the spores to a different surface that is not mold/mildew protected within the same environment. In other words, mold/mildew is something you're gonna have to put up with in those type of temps, that kind of humidity, in that specific environment.

I personally would recommend a water-borne polyamine cured epoxy (2 component) for the following reasons - (1) epoxy resins really do not provide a food source for mold/mildew/algae etc. , therefore the addition of a limited life mildewcide or mildewstat in un-necessary...(2) while acrylics are fine in bathrooms for their incidental exposure to heat and humidity, your application is constant heat and humidity. Due to the thermoplastic nature of acrylics, those constant temps and humidity kind of softens an acrylic film allowing airborne, organic pollutants to become incorporated into the paint film - those pollutants can then provide the food source necessary for mold/mildew growth (OK, from here on out, I'm gonna refer to "mold/mildew/algae" as just "mildew"). Then, cleaning this diminished acrylic surface with cleansing products designed to remove any mildew growth, often results in further degradation of the acrylic film, and rendering the built in mildew stat, or cide, impotent. Epoxy resins are very durable in areas of high heat and humidity, and Epoxies will withstand the necessary cleansers and scrubbing that may be necessary to remove any mildew growth that may occur. Because the epoxy I'm recommending is water-borne, there will be no issues of incompatibility with the existing coating on the wall.

The downside of epoxy is pretty limited, and has to do mostly with aesthetics. Typically your poly-amine cure epoxies are high gloss (which is good for utility purposes)...and, the nature of any epoxy is they will yellow over time - so it may be a good idea to choose a color that slight yellowing won't be all that noticeable or offensive (in other words, not white). While it is true that epoxies are more expensive than conventional coatings, the life span of the coating will more than offset the initial cost differences. The only caveat I'd offer up regarding epoxies is to shy away from single component epoxies (epoxy esters), 2 component acrylic epoxies and any solvent borne epoxy (single or dual component). Stay with a water-borne poly-amine or poly-amide cure product (I'd also consider painting the floors with the same type product)...

Good luck to you - I hope this info is more helpful than confusing. Let us know what you decide.
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Old 10-20-2012, 10:48 AM   #4
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WHat could i paint a very humid tropical fish room with?


Ya, what he said!

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Old 10-20-2012, 12:26 PM   #5
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WHat could i paint a very humid tropical fish room with?


As for sources, you definitely want to talk with a real paint store that can link you to an industrial coatings representative. Or look online and their should be a contact link where you can explain your situation.

Marine paint suppliers tend to have a good assortment of two part finishes like Ric recommends and well suited to humid conditions.

You might ask for performance record for such coatings at your local university with similar aquaculture growing environments. If one is near you, they should be willing to tell you where they get their paint.

With any two part finish do make sure the components are within their date expiration range. There is absolutely nothing worse than resins that will not cure and leave you with gooey gunky mess.

Finally, consider whether this is a diy project. There are companies that mix two part finishes on demand with heat and air bubble control equipment and they have the specialized spray tips, etc. to apply them.

I too would make sure you ask about the ability of the material to cure in such a humid environment or figure out how you might lower the humidity temporarily while it does.

Last edited by user1007; 10-20-2012 at 12:28 PM.
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Old 10-20-2012, 03:39 PM   #6
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WHat could i paint a very humid tropical fish room with?


OK, I really don't disagree with anything SDS says here - but - if you're not familiar with 2 component epoxies, I don't want you to be frightened off by the warnings of outdated components, problems with mixing components or specialty spray and equipment necessary to apply these coatings.

While these products don't necessarily fall into a typical DIY category, they're pretty simple products to use. The products I've described can be brushed, rolled or sprayed...mixes easily, and usually with no induction time (sweat-in). There is a time window for application once mixed (see product label for mixing instructions, but the time frame is usually at least a few hours after conversion).

Matter-o-fact, the problems and concerns typically associated with 2 component epoxies relate more to the old work horse type, solvent-borne, poly-amide cure epoxies - not the water-borne poly-amine cure products. Even I would be a little skeptical recommending those products to a novice. As far as marine coatings go, I'd stay away from 'em for your application - the reason is this, marine coatings are designed for marine application. Many, not all, are solvent borne, are thicker (more viscous) and contain anti-fouling agents that don't necessarily translate well when used in an interior environment.

So...if you decide to consider an epoxy, do so without the fear of a super complicated application - it ain't all that. Follow the package instructions, and talk to your local independent paint dealer for additional advice and application instructions.
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Old 10-20-2012, 04:02 PM   #7
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WHat could i paint a very humid tropical fish room with?


Ric, will defer to your expertise on this. And I did not mean to frighten the OP off from applying epoxy himself. And two part marine finishes are just the epoxies I know best. I am a creature of habit I guess.

Just one question out of curiosity? What do you advise the OP do if the ambient humidity needs to stay at 80-90 percent?
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Old 10-20-2012, 04:12 PM   #8
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WHat could i paint a very humid tropical fish room with?


The fish are in 100%... I don't think the room needs to be high, it just is because of so much open water.
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Old 10-20-2012, 04:24 PM   #9
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WHat could i paint a very humid tropical fish room with?


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The fish are in 100%...
Could be flying fish or the ones that live, eat, breed and walk on land?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FLh4O...eature=related


Just hope the OP can get the humidity down as recommended for at least the time it takes to paint.

Last edited by user1007; 10-20-2012 at 04:31 PM. Reason: Added URL
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Old 10-20-2012, 04:28 PM   #10
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WHat could i paint a very humid tropical fish room with?


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Ya, what he said!

I got here late but ya, I could have told him that
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Old 10-20-2012, 10:34 PM   #11
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WHat could i paint a very humid tropical fish room with?


Do you have any exterior insulation? Where are you located? Is there any forced space ventilation? You will have condensation unless you change things, temperature wise- if you need the high humidity- not just paint.

Gary

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