Does High-Quality Exterior Paint Really Matter?

When buying paint, we all know what it’s like to stare at the spectrum of price tags on a row of products that otherwise seem identical. The question inevitably comes to mind: “how much does the quality really matter?” While preferring lower cost over quality may be appropriate for some painting projects, exterior surfaces should be treated with extra care. In the end, going for the higher quality product will leave you with better and longer lasting results which may even end up saving you money in the long run. 

How exterior house paint works. 

When considering the importance of any product, it can help to know how it works. Most paints contain four main ingredients: liquids, binders, additives, and pigments. The liquids act primarily as the base for the other ingredients and evaporate completely after the paint is applied and cured. Most important to the overall quality of your exterior house paint however are the binders, pigments, and additives (also known as “solids”) which are left behind. Let’s take a closer look:

Pigments: When it comes to paint, color is no small feature. Every can of exterior paint contains both “prime” and “extender” pigments. Prime pigments, which are more costly, contribute mostly to the color and hide of the paint whereas extender pigments are used to add bulk to the product at a low cost. 

Binders: Binders act as the “glue” which hold everything together after the paint has dried. This is especially important in exterior paint, since paint that is exposed to the weather has a much higher risk of cracking, peeling, or chipping. The quality and the quantity of the binder will affect the onset of these unwanted blemishes.

Additives: Additives can be used to give extra benefits to exterior paint that it doesn’t get from the other ingredients. For example, in better quality paint, preservatives and mildewcides are often added to keep the paint from spoiling and to reduce mold growth. 

All three of these main ingredients work together to influence the outcome of your exterior paint’s performance.

What are the advantages of quality paint?

A key feature to the success of any exterior painting project is turning the color you envision into a reality that lasts for more than one season. How does good quality paint make that happen? 

1. Better coverage: The ratio of solids to liquids can play a significant role in the ability that paint has to cover surfaces. Higher quality paint has a higher percentage of solids and results in a thicker and more durable coating. Paint with a lower percentage of solids on the other hand may be much cheaper for the same amount but the thinner application will require more coats to finish the job.

2. Color retention: Exterior paints that contain higher quality prime pigments such as titanium dioxide will retain their color better than paints which rely more on low-cost extender pigments. 

3. Protection: While aesthetics are certainly a major part of any house painting job, they’re not everything. Quality exterior paint that is tailor-made to protect against the outside elements will provide a better barrier against moisture and mold.  

4. Durability: Higher quality exterior paints use binders such as 100% acrylic to give the paint greater elasticity. This allows it to expand and contract as the temperature changes. With a better bond to your house and stronger resistance against the elements, your exterior paint can last well over twice as long as lower quality paint. 

Does buying cheap exterior paint really save money? 

When it comes to protecting and enjoying your house, sometimes a little extra expense is worth it, but in the end is it actually cheaper to buy lower quality paint?  Here are three things to consider:

1. Cheaper paint will likely need to be applied with more coats to cover the surface which means you need to buy more of it. 

2. If you are painting a whole house with a less expensive paint that will last around 5 years compared to a nicer paint that could last 10-15 years, you could actually be paying more per year than you would be with the better product. 

3. Finally, quality exterior paint can keep parts of  your house from rotting or getting damaged, which may result in lower maintenance costs. 

Have more house painting questions? Contact us!

Finding a quality exterior paint isn’t difficult when you have a quality painter. A.G. Williams Painting company has been serving folks in Westchester County, Fairfield County, Rockland County, and Putnam County since 1906. If you need help with your next exterior painting project contact us today!