How long does spray paint take to dry: useful tips for best-painted surface, and spray paint drying time with different layers

How Long Does Spray Paint Take To Dry: Best Helpful Tips Paint FAQs

Recently, there has been a rather large demand for aerosol paints. They help to quickly carry out staining, and the drying process is much faster when compared with conventional acrylic spray paint. More about how long does spray paint take to dry you can read in this article.

how long does spray paint take to dry

How long does spray paint take to dry: time

Usually, you can hear the question, how long does it take for spray paint to air dry? On average, the spray paint to dry needs 10 min. However, for it to dry completely, you have to stock up for several hours. It is important to understand that the rate of drying depends on different parameters.

What determines the rate of drying?

The drying speed of spray paint depends on many parameters.

Surface material

As you know, all materials have a certain texture, which can be rough or smooth. Generally, you can see the texture, and at other times you have to touch it.

The smoother the surface, the faster the coating will dry. Rough surfaces take longer to dry.

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Applicable type of spray paint. What spray paint dry faster?

There are various types of spray paint available on the market. All products have an exclusive design, which affects the drying speed of the coating.

  1. Enamel spray paint. The enamel paint option begins to dry within a few minutes after application. This is because the solvent in the enamel paints begins to evaporate rapidly. Upon contact with air, the polymers begin to combine, so a strong surface is formed. It is necessary to wait about 10-30 minutes from the moment of completion of work to get a dry surface. Complete drying is observed after 8 hours.
  2. Lacquer paint. If you want the paint to dry faster, use aerosol varnishes. Even latex paint can give this result if diluted with water. In the manufacture of lacquer paint, a thermoplastic polymer is used. The surface dries in 3-5 min. If a tougher drying is required, you have to wait about 3 hours.
  3. Epoxy paint. Epoxy and polyurethane-based spray paints have a high drying speed. For the components to begin to react, you need to take a short break. After 5 min., the surface begins to dry. Complete drying is observed after an hour.

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Environmental factors

In many ways, it all depends on the parameters of humidity. If you plan to carry out spray-painting work, the room should have low humidity levels. In hot weather, the spray paint take to dry much faster. The exception is heated metals.

It is important to work carefully if the temperature is very low. If the temperature is below 32 °F, the room must have excellent ventilation.

Tools for work and the surface for spray-painting must first be cleaned of frost. In cold weather, the consistency of the spray paint can change, so you have to work quickly.

If the temperature is below 32 °F, drying is quite long. If you need to urgently submit a project, or draw portable drawings, work should be done in a warm room.

Stages of dryness for spray paints

All spray paints differ in several stages of drying. To accurately determine the time, you need to carefully read them.

  1. Surface dry. When the paint solvent evaporates, the surface dry. There is a small layer on top of the paint, which is sticky. Therefore, you need to work carefully.
  2. Dryness to the touch. Already, from the name, you can understand that it is possible to touch the surface of the paint. However, it is better not to put pressure on it so that the coating does not deteriorate and is not imprinted on the fingers.
  3. Hard drying. This stage consists of the fact that the spray paint has already dried; however, it is undesirable to press on it. If you press it, it leaves fingerprints. However, you won’t get your hands dirty.
  4. Complete drying. At this stage, you can touch the coating, and press on it. This indicates that the spray-painting work has been completed.

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The thickness of the paint

If there are thick coats, so the long spray paint takes to dry. Even the formula of the spray paint used can affect the thickness. You also need to consider how much water or solvent was added.

How long does spray paint the last

Finding spray paint cans on the market is not difficult. The shelf life of such a finishing material is quite large. However, you still need to pay attention to the information that is indicated on the package.

If there is an indication “Apply until”, it is better to use up the spray paint before the specified period.

Before buying, you need to carefully look at the expiration date to understand whether you have time to use up all the material or not.

It is important to evaluate the quality of the shade. To do this, shake the can of paint a little.

After the composition must be sprayed onto the surface, and evaluate the quality. If there are any flaws or doubts, refuse to buy, and look for other options for spray paint.

Even lacquer spray paint that comes in unopened cans can last up to 10 years. However, volatile substances can evaporate because it is impossible to completely seal the jar at home. For subsequent use, it is enough to add a little thinner to restore consistency.

There are differences in enamel, to which various desiccants are added. Spray paint dry time varies by manufacturer. The production process also has an impact. Carefully approach the issue of storing containers with paints. It is impossible that the containers were in a room with high levels of humidity.

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How to speed up the drying process of spray paint?

Typically, you can hear the question, how can I get spray paint to dry faster? If the drying speed of the paint is too slow for you, there are several methods to speed up the process.

Applying the thin coats of paint

If you apply a thin layer, then spray paint dry much faster. If you plan to apply it in several layers, then each of them should dry well. Do not apply a second coat of a wet paint.

Starting the heater near the surface to be painted

The paint dries much faster in the heat than in cold weather. The warmer it is in the room where the work is carried out, the better the applied layers will dry.

If the weather is rather cool, you can install a special compact heater in the room.

You can even use a hair dryer. However, they must be used very close to the surface of the paint to speed up the drying process of small areas.

Raising the temperature, however, does not help spray paint dry in minutes. The difference can be no more than 1-1.5 hours.

Humidity reduction

If you work in a room with fairly high levels of humidity, you can install a dehumidifier in the room. If the weather is sufficiently humid, close all windows in the room where the work is being done.

It’s best to check the weather before starting work to schedule paint jobs at the right time.

Repairs should not be done during the rainy season. You should also work during the day so that the sun speeds up the drying process.

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Air circulation

The wind also helps speed up the drying of the paint. If the weather is not windy, you can install a fan in the room. It accelerates the evaporation of moisture, circulating air around. If you want to improve the result, it is recommended to use a high-power desktop or ceiling fan.

If the room is not cleaned, it is better not to use the fan. After all, air currents provoke the sticking of debris on top of the paint, so the surface is damaged. It is better to use the fan from the second stage of drying.

Paint drying speed based on surface

The drying speed of spray paint also depends on which surface is being painted.

Drying speed on plastic

Quite often, people cannot sit still, so they are constantly trying to improve the appearance of outdoor furniture. Usually, it is made of plastic. Spray-painting such surfaces are quite difficult, especially if you have no experience.

If spray paint is applied over plastic surfaces, it takes much longer to dry. In this case, it does not matter at all whether you previously applied a primer or not. This is because plastic is characterized by negligible surface friction.

It’s pretty easy to check this. Pour some water on the plastic, and you will see that it flows off easily. On average, the drying speed of spray paint on plastic increases by half an hour.

Even if visually it seems that the surface is already dry, you should not touch it. After all, there is a risk of spoiling all the work.

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Read also: How long does primer take to dry on surfaces before painting?

Drying speed of paint on metal surfaces

Metal is a hard material, which is why it is quite difficult to spray paint on it. This can take a long time, especially for inexperienced workers.

Metal is an excellent conductor of heat and cold. Therefore, it is almost impossible to determine exactly how long the paint hardens on it.

If the metal is hot, it is a much longer spray paint cure time. This is because the material holds heat quite well, so it takes time for it to dissipate.

If the metal is cold, the spray paint cure time is shorter. If the air temperature drops below zero, the paint likely freezes and cracks. After all, metal stores energy quite well.

For the spray paint applied over the metal surface to dry, you have to wait about 2-3 hours.

At the same time, this time, spray paint dry only to the touch.

It takes about 4-6 hours to completely dry. This is achieved under the condition of applying a primer, as well as optimal environmental parameters.

How long does spray painting on wood take to dry?

Most often it is wood that is painted. It is quite difficult to determine the exact drying time of the paint on such surfaces. After all, you have to take into account a large number of different factors.

If the wood has been pressure treated and not kilned, it takes a long time for the paint to dry. After all, it has to dry not only on the surface but also in the fibers of the tree.

If you use oil paint, the spray paint dry time increases even more. After all, such compositions have a thick texture, compared with other types of paint.

They seep into the fibers, so they have a more durable finish.

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How long does it take to dry each layer?

Sometimes, people wonder, how long does it take for 2 coats of spray paint to dry? The speed of paint drying is not constant and depends on various factors. Particular attention should be paid to how many layers you apply.

After applying the first layer, you need to wait 2-3 hours, after which you can start grinding and applying the second layer. It is important to be patient during staining so that the result is excellent.


As you can see, the speed of drying paint depends on many factors. It is important to consider the composition used, the surface material, as well as environmental conditions. This is the only way to achieve the best result.

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My blog was created specifically to bring you the latest design trends. I graduated from Parsons School of Design in New York 10 years ago. I started drawing as a child. I was very fond of design and could even choose a style for my friends and relatives during the renovation.

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