4 Tips for Choosing a Paint Thinner

A fresh coat of paint can give a new lease of life to your old house or fences. It not only increases the durability of the furniture and the walls, but also makes them look pretty and gorgeous. Hiring a professional painter may not look like a feasible option for many color lovers who love to show off their creative skills on their walls.

With such a variety of oil- and latex-based colors available in the market, the consumers have been flooded with too many options to decorate their house and garden. However, the main problem about using paint all by yourself lies in the fact that it can create serious stains on your body, furniture and cloths. Though there are many solvent available in the market, care should be taken to ensure that you choose the right thinner that will be gentle on your skin, safe and economical.

Tip 1: Volatility

Most paint thinners are inflammable in nature. Therefore, always take good care to ensure that paint thinners are not very volatile and are kept away from fire sources.

Tip 2: Effervescence

Owing to their chemical property, they tend to evaporate fast when left in the open. So always, buy a thinner that does not evaporate fast so that they can be used for a longer period of time. Also, take enough care to ensure the air tightness of the container.

Tip 3: Cost and environmental friendly

Since thinners tend to evaporate fast, always buy them in small quantities so that they are not wasted. If possible, go for green product that releases fewer toxins into the environment and helps to keep the atmosphere clean

Tip 4: Patch test

Different thinners react differently to different thinners. So always do a patch test on the paint and surface before actually buying them.

Tip 5: Understanding Characteristics

The characteristics of some off the famous thinners and the purpose that they generally serve are further discussed below:

Turpentine: If you are not very keen on saving money and want the best solvent for thinning your paint without causing any pollution, then turpentine is just the thinner for you. It's most suitable for cleaning purposes rather than for softening purposes of hard paints.

Naphtha: Naphtha or benzene as we know it, is a solvent used for cleaning or degreasing purposes. With a very high solvency quotient naphtha is a highly inflammable liquid that should be carefully handled with facemasks and hand gloves.

Lacquer Thinner: Is a thinner that is formed by combining a number of paints. Though it is not a very good paint-thinning agent, it is good for cleaning brushes and removing excess adhesive, and it effectively cleans fast-drying wood paints.

Mineral Spirits: Mineral spirits are odorless spirits that are used to dissolve paint and make it thinner. Its advantage is that it's neither flammable nor volatile, however it tends to vaporize if left in the open for too long.

Alcohol: Last but not the least, alcohol s a natural thinner that can be used to remove light pencil marks as well as to thin shellac-based paints and clean brushes used to apply shellac paints.

Besides the paint thinners described here, other thinners are available that serve more or less the same purpose. As a safety precaution when using paint thinners always work in a clean and well-ventilated environment.