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Water based paints never seen to dry, even after years.

909 Views 5 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  klaatu
I don't do much painting. Over the past 20 years I've painted things 6 to 10 different times. I've always used water based paints for easy cleanup. I've noticed the paints don't dry like paints did 50 years ago.

Perhaps 20 months ago I painted a board with Zinsser Bulls Eve 1-2-3 water based primer. Dry in 30 minutes, recoat 1 hour, full hardness 7 days. Over that I painted Krylon ColorMaster Acrylic Latex Enamel. Dry to touch 1 hour, handle 3 hours, recoat 6 hours.

After more than a year and a half, if I squeeze this board between thumb and forefinger it is still tacky.

I'm not sure if for 20 years now I've ever seen a water based paint actually dry. If they ever do become non-tacky, it seems to take years.

Anyway, a couple of weeks ago I painted a wooden handle with the same paints above. This needs to be non tacky. Any suggestions? Some kind of top coat that I can buy in a small amount?

Thank you,
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Wish I could help you out on this one, Harry. I can't say that I've experienced the same thing. I've had things that took a while to dry, but, they always dried in time. Plaster is one of those surfaces that seems to take a while to dry. I guess if it has some porosity to it, it's going to dry much faster as the primer and paint tend to get soaked up into the substrate. Plaster is hard and nonporous so it takes longer to dry. Anyway, I'm rambling, but, try having a fan running or a dehumidifier to speed up the process............
Thanks for trying Gymschu.

Before I asked the question I did a search to see if it had already been answered. A couple of people asked about days or weeks old tacky paint, but not years.

I have a larger (4 foot) and smaller (2 foot) painted boards. Anyway, I painted that larger board 18 or more months ago, used it as a seat for 6 or so months, and a year ago leaned it against a non painted board. I went to move them a few hours ago and the painted board was lightly stuck to the non painted board. The smaller painted board was used for a couple of months and about a year ago leaned against the larger painted board. Even though only the top edge of the smaller board was touching the larger painted board, I had a bit of trouble pulling them apart. I though I may have pulled the paint off, but luckily they are okay.

My memory is bad, and I can't remember everything I've painted in the past 20 years, but I'm a bit surprised that there aren't more comments on this. When I painted that larger board to use as a seat to go across my inflatable boat I fully expected it to stick to the boat, and it did even though I waited a week to use it. Luckily it doesn't seem to stick to the vinyl very easily.
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I think what your talking about is referred to in the painting industry as blocking. This is the tendency for some acrylic films to retain a tendency to stick to things even after they're "dry".

Some acrylics, mostly the cheaper ones, have very poor blocking resistance. I've seen doors that tended to stick to the frames even after prolonged drying times.

Better quality paint usually is more resistant to this, and a few modern acrylics like Aura and Breakthrough are especially resistant to this problem.

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