Painting a fence with a roller

What are the ideal weather conditions for painting outdoors?

One of the most important things to factor in when decorating outside is the weather. The last thing you want to do is spend the whole day painting only to find that come the next day it’s been ruined by the elements. But what exactly are the ideal weather conditions for painting? We explain what you should avoid below.

  • Direct sunlight
  • High winds
  • High temperatures and high humidity
  • Low temperatures
  • Rain

Direct sunlight

One of the most common mistakes when it comes to painting outside is to expose your fresh paint to direct sunlight. As lovely as it is to have the sun on you whilst you work it can be very detrimental to your paint. This is because direct sunlight will cause your paint to dry too fast. Although this sounds like something you would want, you actually want paint to take a while to dry.

This is because in order for paint to properly adhere to a surface it needs to soak into it and be absorbed. If it is exposed to too higher sun, the paint will dry very quickly and not be able to absorb and adhere to the surface. This causes the paint to sit on top of the surface and crack, peel and flake off.

Whilst most people like to be out in their yard painting away in the Summer sun, we highly recommend painting either earlier in the year, such as in the Springtime, or in the morning before it gets too hot.

Generally speaking, if the surface you wish to paint is warm to touch then it is too warm to paint.

High winds

Another common mistake when painting is to do it when there is high winds. Just like exposure to direct sunlight, strong winds can also cause the paint to dry out too fast which will not allow the paint to bond to the surface and therefore causing the paint to fail.

Another big problem with high winds is that the gusts can pick up dirt, sediment and leaves and blow them into your fresh paint. Something you will definitely want to avoid!

High temperatures and high humidity

Higher temperatures usually comes with higher humidity levels. When there is higher humidity, there is more moisture in the air and as such it will take longer for the water/solvents in the paint to evaporate and therefore take longer to dry.

Low temperatures

At low temperatures, paints made with a base of natural oils and resins can become much more viscous. Because of this, if you are painting in cold weather you may notice paints becoming incredibly thick, semi-solid or in the case of latex paints even freeze.


We think it goes without saying that encountering rain whilst painting or during the drying process can be disastrous. We highly recommend checking in with a variety of weather reports to make sure you get the most accurate information. It’s a costly fix both in time and money to correct.

So what are the ideal weather conditions for painting outdoors?

This can vary slightly depending on what it is you are painting and what type of paint you are using. However, generally speaking you will want to have:

  • An air temperature of between 50°F (10°C) and 95°F (35°C)
  • No risk of rain during both the application and the drying period
  • A maximum of 80% humidity
  • Slightly overcast/light cloud

Remember to check the product data sheet available on all our product pages to make sure your application conditions are as they should be. They can be found under the ‘Technical Data’ tab.

Using a paint conditionerEasy Flow and Owatrol Oil

One of the best ways to assist when painting outside is by using a paint conditioner such as Owatrol Easy Flow or Owatrol Oil. They both do the same thing except Easy Flow is for use in water-based paints whereas Owatrol Oil is for use in oil-based paints.

Using a paint conditioner gives paint a better viscosity. This makes painting in more hot, cold or even windy conditions much easier and safer to do. It also drastically reduces brush and roller marks allowing for a much more professional looking finish.

We hope you found this post helpful and learned some ideal weather conditions for painting outdoors. If you have any other tips, tricks or advice, please feel free to leave them in the comments below. We love hearing from you!

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Owatrol Team
About Owatrol Team

Our team are ready and willing to support you with your requirements whether it is protecting your newly laid deck or renovating a luxury yacht, whatever the application Owatrol US has the solution you are looking for.

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