Paint Additives

Paint additives are important elements of top-quality paint. They are used to provide desirable properties that the paint might otherwise lack. Certain additives are designed to improve ease of application, enhance the appearance of paint or provide protective qualities. While many manufacturers include some additives in their paints, there are some additives that can be purchased separately and added to your existing paint.

Most paints, especially high-quality paints, already contain some additives. If you’ve purchased the paint for your project, but it doesn’t have the additives you’re looking for, some can be obtained separately and easily mixed directly into most oil- or water-based paints. When shopping for paint, don’t be deterred by higher prices. Paint additives are a key component in pricing, and paints with premium additives will require a higher up-front investment. If you think that a lower-priced paint will save you money, don’t forget to factor in the cost of purchasing additives separately or the need to repurchase and reapply low-quality paints sooner. Additives with a protective element, such as mildewcides, can save you even more money and time by protecting surfaces from the harmful effects of mildew, mold and more.

Some of the more common additives include thickeners, mildewcides, surfactants, antifoam agents and corrosion inhibitors. Each of these additives is designed to address a different issue. Some combination additives are also available, such as conditioner/corrosion inhibitor. Conditioner is often applied to additives that enhance the workability, finish and performance of paint.

There are a variety of specialty additives, so, if you have a specific painting concern, it’s worth checking to see if a useful additive exists. There are additives that reduce paint odor, change the sheen, provide better freeze/thaw stability and more. Additives that increase or decrease drying time can make painting a lot more convenient. You can speed up the drying time of an oil-based paint if you want to be able to apply a second coat sooner, or you can slow down the drying time of water-based paint for better leveling or when working in direct sunlight.