Is Spray Paint Waterproof?


You want to spruce up your house with a new paint job. However, as a fan of DIY, this time, you want to avoid hiring someone to do it for you. Choosing suitable paints for your exteriors is a challenge. You know you must use waterproof paint; a friend suggests spray paint. But is spray paint waterproof?  

We start by answering that question in this article. We shall also discuss how long spray paint takes to dry, whether it’s toxic, and whether rustoleum, acrylic, and chalk spray paints are waterproof. Finally, we list a few common uses for waterproof spray paint. 

Is Spray Paint Waterproof?

Most of the spray paints are waterproof. It’s interesting to note that while indoor and decorative spray paints are not waterproof, exterior spray paints are. The glossy finish of exterior spray paints is made possible by adding plastic additives and sealants. The particles in the spray paint additives are denser than those in water. Consequently, the spray paint particles cover your painting surface with a waterproof coating. 

You can know waterproof spray paints by their components. Polyurethane emulsifiers in waterproof spray paints keep the spray paint stable. The spray paint can expand and contract without breaking down. Hence, moisture will not penetrate through the paint’s surface. 

It is essential to follow a few guidelines to ensure the spray paints remain waterproof long after painting your surface.

  • You must prepare the surface you want to paint to stop water from entering through the painted surface. An uneven surface can cause paint to crack or bubbles, allowing water to pass through. 
  • Avoid rushing the drying process since wet spray paint can begin to peel off. Wet coatings are washable and water soluble. Water cannot remove a layer that has dried off. 
  • Spray several coats of spray paint. Wait until the paint has dried before applying a second coat. The amount of protective layers increases with each additional coat of paint. Water can seep through the paint if the coats are applied thinly. 

When you press the nozzle down on spray paint, the aerosol pressure inside causes the paint to disperse. The paint dries in an even smoother layer on the sprayed surface. In contrast to other types of paint, the paint layer dries quickly. After the paint dries, you don’t need to do anything else.  

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Is Rustoleum Spray Paint Waterproof?

Rustoleum spray paint is waterproof. It consists of high-quality resins and pigments. Rustoleum spray paint produces a protective layer that keeps water from penetrating the painted surface. The primary function of Rustoleum spray paint is to protect the metal from water damage. As a result, it stops rust by blocking moisture. The barrier is so powerful that it can block moisture for ten years. 

You can use Rustoleum on other surfaces made of wood and plastic and still get good results. Rustoleum spray paints are usually oil-based, fast drying and can withstand moisture and water. They are also water-resistant.  You can even use the paint to cover leakages and cracks in various surfaces. 

However, don’t use Rustoleum spray paint on heated surfaces, as the rubberized coating drips or sags eventually. 


Is Acrylic Spray Paint Waterproof?

Acrylic spray paint is not waterproof. It forms a water-resistant shine or gloss after drying. However, the sheen breaks down as it comes into contact with moisture or water, enabling water to pass through. The best applications for acrylic spray paints are indoor projects like painting walls, furniture, doors, and windows.  

You might ask, if acrylic paint forms a water-resistant sheen, why isn’t it waterproof? There is a significant difference between waterproof and water-resistant. When a material is waterproof, it will not get damaged even in continued exposure to water. Water-resistant means that a material can only resist water up to a certain level. 

Apply a clear coat of varnish or sealant if you want to use it in moisture-prone areas to make the spray paint waterproof. Without a sealant, water contact will cause the acrylic spray paint to peel and bubble. You can add a top coating, but ensure it is of the same brand as the spray paint to avoid chemical reactions. After the spray paint has dried, add the top coat to the surface. 

Is Chalk Spray Paint Waterproof?

Chalk spray paint is not waterproof. It lacks the resins or additives that could make it waterproof. It is water-resistant in that it can, although briefly, endure exposure to water. The chalk spray paint will wash off with repeated contact with water. Water serves as the paint solvent in chalk spray paint, which is water-based. 

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Chalk spray paint lacks a glossy coating that will withstand water because it is water-based.  Despite not being waterproof, chalk spray paint is a good option for interior projects. Where you desire a rustic appearance, it provides an opaque, matte finish. It works best with furniture pieces. 

How to Tell if Spray Paint is Waterproof?

The label of the desired spray paint contains the first indication that it is waterproof. Most manufacturers state whether the spray paint is waterproof on the label. Spray paint is most likely not waterproof if the manufacturer has not explicitly stated it is. 

Spray paint with a glossy finish is waterproof. Water does not infiltrate through the glossy top coat. Plastic additives and sealants are frequently applied to give the paint a shiny top coat. The spray paint is waterproof and water-resistant, thanks to the same components. 

Another method of telling whether spray paint is waterproof is to test it. You can start by spraying a tiny patch of the surface. After the area has dried, pour some water and let it sit for a while. The paint is not waterproof if the water begins seeping after the time limit. If the water is tinted, the paint has dissolved in it. The paint is not waterproof as a result. 

Note: If you want the spray paint to be more waterproof, apply a primer before and a sealant or topcoat after spray painting. 

How Long Does Spray Paint Take to Dry?

The type of spray paint you use will determine how long it takes to dry. Typically, spray paint needs between 30 minutes and 24 hours to dry completely. The components that are in the paint, the surrounding temperature and humidity, the surface, and the number of coats will all affect how long it takes for the paint to dry.  

Different drying times will apply to the various paint components. Spray paints with a water base will dry faster than oil-based paints. Despite these factors, spray paints will dry more quickly than other types of paint. 

The duration will also depend on the surface you intend to use the spray paint on. Spray paint dries more quickly on brick or concrete than wood or metal. 

It will dry quicker if you spray 1-2 coats of paint rather than five. In other words, the drying time increases with the number of coats you apply. 

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The surrounding temperature and humidity levels will also impact how quickly things dry. The spray paint dries quicker in high-temperature, low-humidity areas. 

Is Spray Paint Toxic?

Despite having many advantages, spray paint contains volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Most waterproof spray paints contain (VOCs) (toluene, acetone, xylene) and poisonous fumes that are unhealthy to inhale. Exterior spray paints have more quantities of VOC compounds. Wear protective clothing when applying spray paint or any other type of paint. 

Some spray paint brands may not include these hazardous substances, but some may. Nausea, headaches, stuffy nose, and dizziness are short-term side effects. Your liver, central nervous system, and kidneys will all suffer harm from continued exposure. Ensure you work in a well-ventilated area when spray painting to avoid inhaling the toxic fumes. 

Common Uses of Waterproof Spray Paint

Waterproof spray paints are a darling of many people who have paint projects. They are durable, easy to clean, budget-friendly and fast drying. Highlighted below, we give you common uses of waterproof spray paint. 

Indoor spray paints: If you select the right spray paint and adhere to safety precautions, you can use it indoors. Make sure you’ve opened the windows and doors and installed extraction fans. Spray paints are perfect for interior walls, ceilings, crafts, etc.

Outdoor spray paints: Your outdoor furniture can be painted with the right exterior spray paint to protect it from moisture and increase its durability. On the exposed areas of your car, you can apply Rustoleum spray paint to prevent corrosion and rust. Spray painting your boat and marine equipment will prevent water damage. Spray paint also works well for painting exterior walls and your roof.  


Exterior spray paints are typically more waterproof than interior ones. Spray waterproof paint includes Rustoleum. Spray paints made of acrylic and chalk are ideal for indoor use because they are not waterproof. Your spray paints will become more waterproof if you add varnish, topcoat, and sealants. 

If you want to confirm if the spray paint is waterproof, check the label, it should have a glossy finish, and you can also test it on a small patch. Unfortunately, certain VOCs are present in spray paint, just like in all other paint forms. As a result, wear protective clothing and operate in a well-ventilated environment when spray painting. 

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