Interior House Painting: From Oil to Acrylic

Interior house painting is not as straight forward as one would think. Not everyone knows how to change from oil to water based paint. At one point, most interior house painters used oil-based paint. But, today many people are choosing to use latex/ acrylic paint for their home instead.

What if you want to paint over your oil-based paint with water-based acrylic? How do you prevent chipping and peeling? Will it look as good?

Want to learn more? Keep reading to learn how to transition from oil to acrylic based paint.

Oil-Based Versus Water-Based Paint

There are options when it comes to what type of paint to choose for your home interior. There are several different kinds of water and oil based paints. We won’t be able to cover them all. But here are a few of the standard varieties.

Oil-Based Paint

Oil-based paint typically dries more slowly. This will increase the chances of it leveling and eliminating brush strokes. Oil based paints are used for several applications. As it pertains to interior house painting, it’s typically applied on wood or interior trim. surfaces. But with everything there is always a drawback. Oil-based paint is more likely to turn yellow, crack, or fade were there is little light. Especially on the back sides of closets door.

Another thing to consider is the fumes of oil paint. Oil-based paint is considered a household hazardous waste.

It’s flammable and has to be disposed of properly. It has extremely high levels of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) like toluene and xylene.

Oil-based paints are also notoriously difficult to clean. If you get paint on a surface, you need to clean it with a toxic chemical such as mineral spirits or denatured alcohol.

Water-Based Paint

Water-based paint – also known as acrylic or latex paint – dries faster and is less likely to turn yellow over time. It also doesn’t give off those strong fumes. If you get paint on interior surfaces, you can easily clean it up with water and soap.

In fact, water-based paint is more environmentally-friendly. It’s not considered a hazardous waste. Just make sure you purchase an acrylic enamel if your searching for comparable durability of oil.

Tips for Going from Oil to Acrylic

Ready to update the look of your home? Here’s how to go from oil-based to water-based paint.

Prep the Area

Before applying acrylic paint, you want to prep the area. If you try applying water-based paint over an oil paint surface, it won’t adhere well.

Use fine-grit sandpaper to remove the gloss from the surface you’re painting. You want to use the sandpaper to remove just the glossy part, not all the old paint.

After you sand the surface lightly, wipe it down and remove any dust. This is arguably one of, if not the single most important step to preparing the surface.

Use TSP to Clean the Area (optional)

You want to apply the fresh paint on a clean, even surface. To properly clean the area, use a solution one-fourth cup trisodium phosphate (TSP) and a gallon of water.

Make sure you wear safety glasses and gloves when dealing with TSP because it’s a hazardous chemical. Use the mixture to clean all the dirt. Then let dry.

Use a Primer

After preparing the area, apply a light coat of bonding primer. Sherwin – Williams have great bonding primers. Bonding primer will help the water-based paint adhere over the old oil paint. Allowing 2 – 3 days for the primer to cure is important. It will help  prevent the likely hood of the primer coat chipping or peeling, allowing maximum adhesion.

For maximum adhesion you may want to apply two coats of primer over the surface.

Apply Paint

Since this blog is primarily about transitioning from oil paint to latex, we will not spend a lot of time covering additional prep such as caulking cracks or puttying nail holes.

So, let’s jump directly into applying the paint. By now your surface should be de-glossed, clean, and primed.

Apply a minimum of two coats of acrylic paint. You can watch YouTube videos to learn proper painting techniques from the pros. Allow the paint to dry before applying a additional coats.

Tips to Follow for Painting

Here are some extra tips to follow to make sure your paint job looks great.

Use the Proper Tools

Depending on what you’re painting, have the proper tools ready. You don’t want to start painting and then have to stop and go to the store to buy another paintbrush or roller.

Also, quality matters when it comes to your painting tools. Invest in a good roller and paint brush. A bad paint job will stand out in your home.

Cover Your Stuff

You’ll be careful, you tell yourself. Next thing you know, you have paint splatters all over your floor and furniture. Before you start painting, cover your floors and all your furniture with protective plastic or cloth.

Don’t Be Cheap with the Paint

When buying paint, you should buy high-quality paint. High-quality paint will last longer and is more resistant to fading. Sherwin – Williams has several great interior products. In terms of trim paint Sherwin – Williams Emerald Urethane enamel is one of the best products Sherwin – Williams has to offer.

Other notable mentions by Sherwin – Williams are: Pro-classic Waterborne Alkyd, Harmony Semi-Gloss and Duration Home seems to have a newly formulated semi – gloss. We have not used or tested that product but are anxious to do so.

Don’t use cheap trim paint. You will not be happy if you do. Cheap trim paints tend to hold more dust and loose their natural sheen sooner.

Choose the Right Finish

In addition to choosing a paint color, there are finishes you can choose. Your choice of finish will depend on which rooms you’re painting, the finish that you are painting over and the style or overall feel of the home.

Final Tips for Applying Sherwin Williams Paints

Now that you know how to apply Sherwin Williams paint types over oil-based paint, you can decide whether you want to go the DIY route or hire a professional.

If you think you won’t have the time or skills to complete the job, you can consider hiring a professional. Professional painters will do all the hard work for you.

If you’re ready to transform your home, contact us for a free quote.