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Proper Storage Tips for Interior House Paint

Proper Storage Tips for Interior House Paint

If you recently finished a DIY interior painting project, we can bet you'll have some leftover paint. But there's no need to dispose of paint that's still in fine condition; that's like throwing money away! Here are some tips for proper paint storage and ideas for preventing paint waste from the local house painters at Trico Painting.

Quick Storage Tips for Interior House Painting

Benefits of Keeping Leftover Paint

Along with saving money, storing leftover paint means you'll have the same paint on hand when you're ready to do touch-ups or tackle more paint and remodeling. You can also use the extra to match new surfaces you want to paint to existing color schemes in your home. Professional-grade paints last a while without degrading, but proper storage is key.

Store Extra Paint in a Dry, Cool Place

First things first, don't store paint in your shed or garage. These areas are not as temperature-regulated as your home interior rooms, and those fluctuations will degrade your paint more quickly. Instead, store leftover paint in your basement, pantry, or other interior storage space that is climate-controlled. In general, cooler, darker, and dryer areas work best for paint storage.

Transfer Paint to Smaller, Labeled Containers

You've used some of your paint already, so there's no need to keep a bunch of gallon buckets around. You can transfer paint and store it in smaller, more compact containers so you take up less space in your pantry.

Many people use mason jars for paint storage; they store easily, can be found everywhere, and make it easy to see what color and type of paint is in the jar. Cans work fine for storage, but you'd have to rely on memory of what the color looks like and label each can by color and type, since you won't be able to glance at a can and know what color is inside.

Even if you use mason jars for paint storage, it's still important to label the paint as soon as you transfer it to a clear jar or container. Paint looks different before and after it dries, and many paints appear similar in shade and style but will have a different impact and finish when applied to the same surface. Label every container with its color and where you used the color last, so it will be far less confusing and frustrating when it's time for touch-ups.

Keep Paint Storage Containers Airtight

Paint degrades when there's too much air in the paint can, jar, or container. You can create an airtight seal by using a sheet of plastic wrap between the paint and the lid, or by storing containers upside-down once transferring paint into them. This is another reason why downsizing paint storage containers once some paint has been used is important. Keeping the paint in the container it came in almost guarantees an excess of air, not to mention it's a headache to properly reseal many of those containers without denting or damaging them.

How to Avoid Wasting Paint

Interior paint waste is an inconvenience, can lead to clutter, and can be a frustrating expense. To avoid this cycle of transferring, labeling, and storing only to dispose of it later, we suggest:

  • Find a Paint Recycling Location: Learn where the closest paint recycling locations are and rely on them when it’s time to get rid of deteriorating paint or paint you don't plan to reuse. Improper paint disposal is harmful to the environment, and the experts can help you avoid that unnecessary harm.

  • Avoid Purchasing Too Much Paint for a Project: You don't want to run out of paint, so you buy a little more only to get stuck with leftovers, but not enough to complete the next job, so you buy more, and the cycle continues. A number of factors impact how much paint you need, including square footage you want to paint, whether the surface has been primed or pretreated, and how textured the surface is. Understanding how these details affect results will help you budget and plan more effectively.

  • Hire Professional Interior House Painters: Hiring house painters eliminates the risk of overpaying for paints and the hassle of paint transference, labeling, storage, and disposal. Painting contractors are keenly aware how much paint is needed for your unique projects and surfaces, and leftover paint gets used much more readily on other projects. We also have the means for proper storage and disposal, so your storage space can be used for what is most important to you.


If you're ready to paint another room but don't want to deal with the stress of DIY painting and paint storage, we're here to help. Contact Trico Painting for your interior painting services estimate today, and leave the painting and paint storage to us!