How Long Does Spray Paint Take to Dry on Metal, Wood, Plastic


One of the biggest concerns when you are painting is the amount of time it will take for the paint to dry. You have to wait for paint to dry completely before you apply another coat, and most people hate to wait. Have you ever heard the saying, “It is like watching paint dry”?

The best thing that you can do to end your waiting anxiety is understand the length of time it will likely take for each coat to dry so you can plan for any waiting you have to do.

How Long Does Spray Paint Take to Dry?

How long does it take spray paint to dry on plastic


Typically it takes half an hour or longer for a layer of paint to dry completely on a plastic surface. You have to remember that in about ten minutes the paint will be dry enough that you can touch it but it will likely still stick to your finger.

In about 20 minutes you can touch the paint without getting paint on your hands, but if you press firmly the paint will stick to your fingers or you will be able to see your fingerprint in the paint. When paint is completely dry it will not come off on your hands and you will not leave an impression in it by touching it.

How long for spray paint to dry on metal


The beauty of spray painting metal is the paint layers will normally dry in ten minutes or less. You have to apply thin coats of paint and you will likely have to paint the item several times to get complete coverage, but the wait time between layers is so low that you do not mind the extra work.

How long does it take for spray paint to dry on wood

Best Spray Paint for Wood Reviews 2019

It is difficult to estimate the exact amount of time it will take for paint to dry on wood because there are so many variables to consider. Most of the time paint will dry completely on a wooden surface in about one to 2 hours.

  • If using oil based paint it will take longer for the paint layers to dry than if you use water based paint.
  • If you apply the paint with a roller or a brush it will take longer to dry than if you use a paint sprayer to apply the paint.
  • If you apply the paint in a thick layer to reduce the amount of layers you have to apply then it will take the paint longer to dry.
  • If the temperature is below 450 the amount of time it takes for the paint to dry will be increased.
  • When you place a fan in the room where the paint is drying you will reduce the drying time because of the increased air circulation.
  • If the humidity levels are high then the paint will take longer to dry.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best way to make paint dry faster?

To make your paint dry faster you should apply it in thin coats. Do not try to put the paint on thickly hoping to use fewer coats and save time. You want to apply thin coats, and provide ample ventilation and air circulation so the paint can dry faster. You can put a fan in the room and direct the fan so it blows on the newly painted surface.

How long does it take for Rustoleum spray paint to dry?

Rustoleum spray paint will dry in a matter of minutes on the majority of surfaces. 30 minutes is about the longest wait time you will have between coatings of this spray paint. This time period is based on thin coats being applied in temperatures above 450. If it is raining, snowing, or the humidity levels are high it will take longer for the Rustoleum to dry.

Final Thought

The amount of time that it takes for paint to dry is affected by the type of paint you are applying and the method you use to apply the paint. Your drying time is also affected by the weather and the air temperature.

When you start a painting project be patient, take your time, and enjoy the process. This will always give you a more professional looking finish.

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