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Old 08-03-2018, 05:27 PM   #1
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Paint Blisters


I painted a couple of 1" x 5 1/2" by 6' mahogany rails for a new porch. First I coated each rail with the spray version of oil-based Kilz Complete to contain any tannin leakage. Once it was good and dry, after very light sanding, I applied two coats (one day between coats) of latex exterior paint. They looked beautiful. No imperfections whatsoever. After a couple of weeks I installed them on the porch and they both (one more than the other) developed numerous small blisters. I sanded one rail and repainted with one coat of finish paint. It dried fine but then a couple of days later it blistered again. I also painted two smaller lengths of rail (for the section that angles down to the landing) and have had no problem at all with them. What's going on?!
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Old 08-03-2018, 06:05 PM   #2
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Re: Paint Blisters


is the blister down to the wood or just loss of adhesion to the primer? What kind of prep did you do before priming? The rails should be sanded 80-100 grit.
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Old 08-03-2018, 07:29 PM   #3
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Re: Paint Blisters


I'm not familiar with painting mahogany but it might be that the wood was not sufficiently dry.
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Old 08-03-2018, 08:56 PM   #4
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Re: Paint Blisters


I'm gonna say that the spray can primer didn't "bite" onto the mahogany wood rails. When you applied the topcoats, they acted on the primer......the water in the latex pulled up the primer. Remember, spray cans of any kind of paint are very, very thin so that they can atomize through the nozzle. I would have recommended something like Zinnser CoverStain or really any quality oil primer not from a spray can.
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Old 08-04-2018, 07:54 AM   #5
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Re: Paint Blisters


KILZ! The joke that stays funny! For over 40 years! HAAHAA!
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Old 08-04-2018, 10:04 AM   #6
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Re: Paint Blisters


I'm still trying to get over the fact that you even used Mahogany if it was just going to get painted.
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Old 08-04-2018, 04:16 PM   #7
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Re: Paint Blisters


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Originally Posted by cocomonkeynuts View Post
is the blister down to the wood or just loss of adhesion to the primer? What kind of prep did you do before priming? The rails should be sanded 80-100 grit.
Just the top coats blistered. I sanded before applying Kilz and again lightly before apply the top coats. I suspect my problem has to do with moisture content.
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Old 08-04-2018, 04:19 PM   #8
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Re: Paint Blisters


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I'm not familiar with painting mahogany but it might be that the wood was not sufficiently dry.
Yeah, I think you're right. They should have been kiln-dried but the fact that the board used for the angled rails didn't blister and the one I used for the top most rails did makes me think it was moisture. I guess I give it a month or two to lose more moisture and then sand and paint again.
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Old 08-04-2018, 04:24 PM   #9
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Re: Paint Blisters


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I'm still trying to get over the fact that you even used Mahogany if it was just going to get painted.
I figured someone would point that out. I didn't originally intend to use mahogany but it was cheaper than clear fir/spruce. I wanted something without knots that was hard and durable that was known for holding up well outdoors.
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Old 08-04-2018, 04:27 PM   #10
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Re: Paint Blisters


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I'm gonna say that the spray can primer didn't "bite" onto the mahogany wood rails. When you applied the topcoats, they acted on the primer......the water in the latex pulled up the primer. Remember, spray cans of any kind of paint are very, very thin so that they can atomize through the nozzle. I would have recommended something like Zinnser CoverStain or really any quality oil primer not from a spray can.
I noticed it was thin when I sprayed it on the board so I applied two coats of primer. The explanation makes sense except for the fact that the angled rails (used mahogany but a different board for those rails) didn't blister and I used the same painting process. Definitely will not use spray primer again though.
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Old 08-04-2018, 06:26 PM   #11
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Re: Paint Blisters


Teak is a very oily, dense wood that's why it's been used on boats for centuries.
Where on the planet are you that teak is cheaper then pine!
Around here it would have been at least $7.00 a ft.
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Old 08-04-2018, 07:24 PM   #12
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Re: Paint Blisters


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Teak is a very oily, dense wood that's why it's been used on boats for centuries.
Where on the planet are you that teak is cheaper then pine!
Around here it would have been at least $7.00 a ft.
Not teak. Mahogany. Teak was expensive like you stated. I got the mahogany for $2.30 a linear foot.
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Old 08-04-2018, 08:40 PM   #13
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Re: Paint Blisters


African mahogany is frequently used for painted exterior work, particularly on the higher end applications. Its is an excellent outdoor wood, should take paint well, and really isn't all the expensive (in contrast "genuine or Honduran mahogany which is significantly more). I just checked, and my normal dealer is $4.95/bd ft (4/4 fas). Narrow widths are available for under $2/bd ft.

There is definitely a part of me that cringes when I see it get painted though.
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