As summer approaches, certain things come to mind: baseball, BBQs, picnics and usually, coping with the heat and humidity. This heat and humidity can have a damaging effect on your paint jobs. To ensure successful paint jobs in the summer heat, it will be important to adopt warm weather coping strategies in the shop.
Here are some common paint issues associated with warm weather:
Solvent popping: trapped solvent that eventually pops out of the film leaving a tiny blister with a hole in the middle.
Air entrapment: compressed air used to apply a coating gets trapped because the coating skins over too fast. The air eventually escapes the film but leaves pinholes on the surface.
Die back: a milder form of solvent popping that leaves a fuzzy appearance in the coating.
Orange Peel: poor flow due to fast solvent evaporation.
Proper choice of product(s) can greatly increase your chances of avoiding these issues and protecting your paint during the warm months.
For example: A shop uses Max Clearcoat (#7761 MTR) with 6800 Series Extra Solids Activator, Spot and Panel (#6874) in the winter and finds that they can do almost an entire paint job with no problems at all. However, as the temperature increases, they find they’re getting more orange peel, jobs ‘die-back’ a little and they’re starting to see pinholes, especially on horizontal surfaces.
The remedy: The strategy in warm temperatures is to slow down the solvent evaporation, slow down the reaction or slow both. In our example, the shop could move to 6800 Series Extra Solids Activators (#6894 or #6894HT) to slow down the solvent evaporation of the coating. They could also use some slow reducer like Zero VOC Urethane Grade Reducer (#6721-F). To slow down the reaction, they would need to change clearcoats to something like Kwik Gloss Acrylic Urethane Clearcoat (#6841).
Because no two shops are alike, no one solution will work for everyone. The process will always be a little bit of trial and error, but eventually, each shop will determine what combination of products will work best for them in the summer heat.
Have some tips on painting in the summer heat? We want to hear them!