Knowing the parameters of paint quality helps you choose the right quality of paint

Gone are the days when you could use oil-based or alkyd paints for painting both building interior and exterior because oil or solvent-based paints are on their way out for health and environmental concerns.  Despite various advantages of using solvent-based paints, it is now a forbidden item because of the pollution caused by the volatile organic compounds (VOC) present. Although solvent-based paints that comply with the modified standards and are deemed safe for use are now available, they do not have any advantage over water-based paints. For painting Melbourne, it is not feasible to use the modified solvent-based or alkyd paints because of their high cost, difficulty in applying the paint on all kinds of surfaces and the longer drying time. 

Although paint manufacturers are using better technology to produce solvent-based paints that are safe to use, water-based paints offer more variety. They are of much improved quality than what they used to be a few years ago. The gloss of acrylic-latex paint is far superior and remains untarnished for a long time without fading compared to any alkyd paint. Ultimately, users would find that latex paint is the only choice that meets all aspects of functionality, aesthetics, workability and cost.

Paint composition and quality

Pigment and resin together with a carrier are the ingredients of paint.  Pigments are mostly titanium dioxide, white and to obtain any other colour shade, it is necessary to mix a small amount of other pigments that provide the necessary tint. Resin is the bonding agent that ensures adherence of the paint to the surface on which it is applied. The carrier, which can be oil or water, helps to dilute the mixture to facilitate its easy and smooth application by using a roller or brush. Adding clay and other ingredients to paint helps to maintain the sheen. 

The quality and price of paint vary according to the ingredients used in the paint. Paint that has high titanium dioxide content, which helps suppress surface imperfections, will cost more. Similarly, alkyd paints with odourless spirits cost more than those that contain regular solvents.     Therefore, by looking at the paint price, you can get some good hints about its quality.

Paint lustre

The total of the pigment, resin and other passive ingredients contribute to the lustre of the paint. Resin is mainly responsible for the gloss, and more pigment reduces the lustre. Glossier finishes denoted by the term enamel finish are long-lasting and washable. Enamel finish means an extra-smooth and hard surface coating with high gloss.  The kind of surface impacts the choice of paint because lustrous paints are good only for highly smooth surfaces with the least imperfections. 

Paint coverage

Coverage means the amount of area painted with a litre of paint. Some people also call it hiding. The coverage is a critical quality parameter of paint because paints labelled as ‘one-coat hiding’ are superior to other paints that would require more than one coating to paint a specific area satisfactorily. 

It is evident that coverage impacts price, and you must do the arithmetic correctly to choose the best quality paint.