Oil vs Latex Paint

Differences Between Latex- and Oil-Based Paints and How to Use Them 
  
You might have been wondering whether to use latex- or oil-based paint for your interior or painting, especially when you just hired a painting company, and have been presented with the choice between the two types of paints. In this article, we will explain the differences, advantages and disadvantages, and applications for latex- and oil-based paints. 
  
Differences 
  
The main differences between latex- and oil-based paints lie within their consistency. Whilst oil-based paint is fairly hard, latex-based paint is soft. The latex paint is also non-combustible, and generally shrinks more than oil-based paint. The oil-based paint is also quite brittle, and uses toxic solvents to accomplish its feel. 
  
Advantages of Each Type of Paint 
  
Latex-based paint is perfect for walls and ceilings, whilst oil-based paint is good for trimming and paintings. Latex-based paint does not crack or peel nearly as much as oil-based paints do, and the surface of the paint is porous in consistency, which allows any moisture in the wall to escape. Latex-based paint is not flammable, and is easily washable. Unlike oil-based paints, latex-based paints do not have the volatile organic compounds that are toxic to humans. Oil-based paint, on the other hand, is much smoother to touch, and is generally more scuff-resistant. The surface itself is very easy to wash, since the surface is harder than in latex-based paints. Wall imperfections are also hidden much easier than latex-based paints. 
  
Disadvantages of Each Type of Paint 
  
Oil-based paint requires renewal much quicker than latex-based paint, and it also yellows over time. Mildew is more prone to form on oil-based paints in moist environment. Oil-based paint is also very easy to peel, unlike latex-based paint. Oil-based paint also has restrictions for consumers in Michigan, California, Connecticut, Washington D.C., Delaware, Maine, New Jersey, New York, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Virginia, and Illinois, and commercial restrictions in Indiana, Ohio, California, Connecticut, Washington D.C., Delaware, Maine, New Jersey, New York, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Virginia and Texas. Latex-based paint constantly requires primer for most surfaces, and shrinks more than oil-based paint. It is also very sensitive to temperature changes, and will stain with excess moisture, e.g. cleaning products. It is also generally softer than oil-based paints, which reduces durability. 
  
Applications 
  
Industrial painters in places like Greensboro typically use oil-based paints, as they are thicker and quite harder than latex paints. Consumer painters in Greensboro can use either one, as there are no restrictions for VOC in paints in North Carolina. It is important to consider, however, than industrial painting is much more demanding than household painting. Latex-based paints are recommended for things like walls and ceilings, and in rare cases floors, whilst oil-based paints are better for things like paintings, since they will peel off much easier. However, due to the climate in Greensboro, it is fairly safe to latex-based paint, as the temperature differences are not nearly as extreme as they are in places like California. If you’re going to hire commercial painters in Greensboro, let them know what kind of finish you would like to achieve, as they will pay close attention to that also, since latex-based paint achieves a more rough feeling, whilst oil-based paint achieves a very smooth surface. 
  
In Conclusion 
  
Hopefully this article explained the differences, advantages, disadvantages, and applications of latex- and oil-based paints. Greensboro painting companies often have access to many types of paints available at your convenience, and it is up to you which finish you want. If you want a smooth, quality feel, then pick oil-based paint. If you want to save some money and want a generally more durable paint-job, then pick latex-based paint. Do consider the fact that whichever choice you make, painters will give you a good finish in the end either way. If you are going to be painting yourself, then remember to use primers for either type, and especially for latex-based paint.

1 comment

  • Gary

    Gary Greensboro, NC

    Thank you so much for explaining the difference between them two. I was wondering what should I paint my bathroom with. Now I have a chose

    Thank you so much for explaining the difference between them two. I was wondering what should I paint my bathroom with. Now I have a chose

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