Solved! How Long Paint Actually Lasts

How long does exterior paint last

How Long Does Paint Last

The vast variety of paints have given us myriad options to color our walls as per our choice and need. For instance, we have chalk paints in the market to color our furniture, milk paints, latex paints, and many more, each having their peculiar qualities, age of degradation, and ways of application. 

So, last year you thought of changing the color theme of your bedroom, and now you are left with an extra paint bucket that you are unsure if is still fresh and can be used to cover a minor fade on the wall. I mean why not? Nobody wants to waste their money and not use the extra paint in the bucket.

How long paint lasts is dependent on its type, the place where it was stored, and if the can have been opened or not. All these and many other reasons have a combined impact on paint. 

Expired Paint Detection:

One of the easiest ways to determine if the paint has gone bad or not is to apply it on a testing surface and see if it applies smoothly. Old and expired paint will have all its components disintegrated, so before using make sure you stir and intermix it thoroughly. The lumpy liquid is a sign of expired paint.

An opened paint can imply that it is more likely to go bad. The direct exposure to air dries up the entire bucket, or might only affect the upper surface, which can easily be removed and the underlying liquid can be used.  Moreover, an opened paint can is a good habitat for fungal and bacterial growth. So, any such presence is an indication to discard it in an eco-friendly way.

Dispose of Safely:

The government proposes safe ways of disposing of a bucket of expired paint. One of which is to dry it completely and discard it in the bin with the daily house trash. Make sure you don’t dump the paint in the toilet or sink, because it might find its way to the clean water supply, furthermore, it can clog your drain to the extent that it will put you in a lot of trouble. 

You might have come across several questions about the lifespan of different paint types, let us now talk about them in detail.

How long does latex paint last?

Latex paint is water-based paint and its life ranges somewhere between 3 to 10 years-if stored the right way. It is usually used to paint larger areas, because it dries out faster, and needs a few coats to get the required results.

How long does acrylic paint last?

Unlike latex paint, acrylic paint is chemical-based, made up of chemical pigment, and solution. These paints are water-resistant, which makes them an appropriate choice for the exterior of your house. Acrylic paints take a comparatively longer time to go bad, like around 15 years, if put in the right place. Moreover, acrylic paint has the tendency to expand and contract easily with the change in temperature, which is why it can stay on the surface for a long time without cracking or degrading. 

How long does an unopened paint last?

Unopened paint cans take a relatively long time to degrade, it might take more or less than 15 years to dry out.

How long does paint last in a can?

Paint in an opened can have a shelf life of 2 years, and that too, if it is sealed tightly and stored in a cool and dry place, with a steady temperature.

How long does spray paint last?

Though it varies from company to company, spray paints are said to have an average shelf life of 3 years. They might even last longer, like for about a decade, if stored under favorable conditions.

How long does interior paint last?

Interior paint is believed to last longer than the exterior, the reason being that it is less exposed to the external environment. Interior paint might stay for about 5-10 years on the surface inside your home, depending on the material of the surface and the type of paint used. 

Besides, the homeowner should make sure to take all necessary precautions to keep the paint as intact as possible. For instance, make sure no water pipes are leaking, the kids don’t scratch or write anything on the walls, etc. 

How long does exterior paint last?

Exterior paint has a relatively shorter shelf life because it is directly exposed to the external environment, receiving sunlight and rain all the time, which are the major reasons for its degradation.


1) One of the easiest ways to make the paint last longer is to store the cans inside a room to ensure it isn’t exposed to sunlight, and to extreme temperature fluctuation.

2) An opened paint can be properly resealed with plastic or other sealants to ensure no air molecules can get inside the container. 

3) During winters, water-based paints might freeze separating the solutes and with the arrival of summers, it will re-melt. This continuous freezing and melting is the prime reason for a paint’s degradation. Hence, make sure you store it in a place subjected to the least temperature change.

The above-mentioned information can help you bring that extra can of paint to use. Glidden Paint also lasts for 2 years that is why it's so famous and in demand. Visit QRG Direct for more Information.