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How To Keep Spray Paint From Rubbing Off

Spray paint is a very versatile product that is used quite often because it is pretty simple to use and gets good coverage as well, although it takes a bit of a learning curve when you first start using it.

You can spray paint most surfaces successfully if they are prepared for the paint job first. Most projects require a few coats of spray paint and sealing it will make it last longer, so you won’t have to wonder how to keep spray paint from rubbing off your projects.

In addition, the spray tip and the type of paint matter too.

How to keep spray paint from rubbing off

Reason Why Spray Paint is Rubbing Off

The tip of the spray paint can make a difference in how the paint comes out of the nozzle and how it acts on surfaces. Most spray tips on paint cans are between 80 and 120 mesh.

Some brands and types of spray paint have up to 220 mesh on the spray nozzle for doing more detailed work. The higher the number of mesh, the less overspray you will have near your projects and the paint will also stick to objects much better.

Lacquer paints are less elastic and this can cause them to rub off easier than latex or acrylic paints. Latex acrylic paints give your projects an elastic layer that will resist cracking off in temperature fluctuations.

Lacquer paints peel off easier than latex acrylic paints.

The surfaces that you spray paint need to be cleaned and lightly sanded before you begin painting them so that the paint will adhere better without rubbing off.

If there are any dust particles or rust on your surface and you simply paint over them, these are the areas that are most likely to rub off first.

It’s best to clean and lightly scuff up your materials to paint and then clean them off with a tack cloth to remove all the dust particles from sanding.

how to keep spray paint from rubbing off

If you paint with the primer before your spray paint, it will seal out moisture better and allow the paint to stick better to surfaces without peeling or rubbing off later.

You can also add a sealant as a top coat on top of the paint to ensure a longer life in your paint job.

If you are using spray paint that you have used before, make sure it is stored at room temperature so that it works better if you reuse the can after some time has passed.

If the paint can gets too cold or too hot in a non-climate-controlled storage building, it affects the performance and allows it to rub off more easily.

Incorrect storage can also cause the paint to become grainy or clumpy in the can and then it does propel outward as it should through the tip.

Not Everything Can Be Successfully Painted

Most surfaces can be spray painted successfully.

However, things that are very porous with holes in them such as stucco or concrete blocks of any type won’t get paint into all the little cracks and crevices and it won’t look right when you are finished with painting them.

Some amateurs will try to paint closer to the object so it will work for porous materials, but this usually results in drips and runs in the paint job.

Which Spray Paints Won’t Rub Off

Your best bet for painted objects is to use a primer first, then several coats of latex or acrylic paint and then follow the painted coats with a sealant. Make sure your item to paint is clean and scuffed up before your start for the best results.

How Can You Seal The Spray Paint So It Doesn’t Rub Off

There are several different spray paint sealers on the market and specific ones are generally used on different items. Polyurethane sealers resist both water and oil and they are usually used on floors, countertops, and any high traffic areas.

Acrylic sealers are easier to apply, but they are less durable. They are also resistant to most household cleaning products and they are usually used for surfaces in kitchens and bathrooms.

Lacquer sealers have a high shine and they are very durable. These sealers are usually used on cabinets and furniture and you can choose either a water or oil-based version.

how to keep spray paint from rubbing off

Shellac sealers are the most durable of all sealers, but they are very difficult to apply. They are used by professionals for high-gloss cabinets and furniture.

You can choose a brush on type of paint sealer or you can use a spray can sealer that will work just like a spray can of paint. Either of the items will protect your paint on your project.

Apply your sealer in even and very thin coats with either a brush or by spraying it on your project. Let each coat dry thoroughly before you apply another coat.

You can add as many coats as you wish and the more coats you add, the thicker and better the seal to protect your painted job from scratches, wear and tear, as well as to keep it from rubbing off.

Best Way to Protect Spray Painted Surfaces

Adding several layers of a paint sealant is the best way to protect your spray-painted surfaces from chipping, peeling, or rubbing off.

The sealant also gives your work a glossy layer of depth and shine for a finished product that is beautiful, durable, and easy to clean.

Tips for Spray Painting

After your substrate is prepared and ready to paint after being cleaned and scuffed up, then you get to the fun part of actually painting it.

Shake the can of paint really well for several minutes. You will hear a ball inside of the can that moves up and down as you shake it to mix the elements of the paint together.

Make sure that you have masked off any areas on your project that you don’t want the paint on. You can simply use painter’s tape and brown kraft paper.

Make even passes from left to right over your substrate from about 12 inches away. You will push the nozzle down before you hit your project and hold it down until after you have left it.

spray painting so it does not rub off

Keep your passes even by spraying light coats of paint and overlapping each pass slightly so the paint is even.

If you apply too much paint and it drips, just leave it alone for now and continue finishing this coat of paint. It’s not advisable to fix drips when the paint is wet. Allow the paint to dry completely and then sand the drip of paint so it is flat.

Remove any sanding dust with a tack cloth and apply another coat of paint. Continue this process by adding more layers of paint and then your sealant as well.

When you finish spray painting a project, turn the can upside down and hold the nozzle down to spray away from you until the gas coming out of the can for the propellant is clear.

This keeps paint from blocking the line so you can store your paint can and use it again in the future.

These tips and tricks can help you spray paint like a pro when you learn how to keep spray paint from rubbing off.

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About Lisa Bohrer

Lisa is a native Texan who says she wears many hats. She is a wife, mother, grandmother, farmer, animal lover, fisherwoman, gardener, and college student. Lisa is a sophomore at Liberty University where she is taking classes to earn her Associates Degree in Creative Writing. She and her husband of 35 years fill their days with life on the farm raising goats and chickens, and then most evenings she can be found at the computer writing, or researching a topic that has piqued her interest.

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