Oil or Latex for Exterior

Old 10-02-00, 07:43 PM
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a

I am preparing to paint the exterior trim of my house. The front faces west and has full sun all afternoon. Previous paint used was latex and it seems to have been baked by the sun. Neighbor used marine paint years ago and it still looks new. I've gotten differing opions on the use of oil vs latex. Sherwin Williams superpaint has been recommended over oil primer. Any input is greatly appreciated.
Old 10-04-00, 08:44 AM
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a


I don't know much about exterior paints except that they're more UV resistant and that they're not as good when it comes to scrubbing and cleaning as interior paints are. However, if you're mostly concerned with colour fastness from sun bleaching, then they guys who would know work in the labs at the paint manufacturers, and their phone numbers are:
Benjamin Moore (ask for Hugh) 1-800-387-8790
Behr (ask for Claude) 1-800-661-1591
Para Paints (ask for Andrew) 1-800-461-7272
All of these phone numbers work from Canada, but I don't know if they'll work from the US.

However, if the trim you intend to paint includes the window frames, then the most important characteristic for the bottoms of those frames is how well the paint "breathes".

Most of the wood trim on the exterior of your house is probably not going to get wet on the inside. In that case, over bare wood I'd use an oil based primer. An oil based primer adheres to bare wood better because it penetrates deeper into the wood (just like a stain). You can get even better penetration and hence adhesion with that primer by applying two coats with the first coat diluted with paint thinner. If you have bare wood on the sides and tops of your window frames, I'd probably use an oil based primer.

For the bottoms of the window frames and the first few inches on each side, you want a paint that will allow moisture in the wood to evaporate. In that case, you should use a latex primer and a latex top coat. Also, flat latexes breathe a lot better than glossy latexes, so use a flat latex.

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Ask a Question
Question Title: