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Thread: What thins latex paint?

  1. #1
    Engineer chassis's Avatar
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    Default What thins latex paint?

    Besides water. I have a door jamb to repaint, and don't want a thick buildup of paint, which will make the door hard to shut. I was reading that methy ethyl ketone (MEK) will dissolve in water. I know that water will thin latex paint. Can MEK thin latex paint also? Would like to find something that thins the paint, flashes off (dries) quickly and aids in paint flow.

    For oil paint, I have used boiled linseed oil to thin the paint and improve flow. Wondering if there is something similar for latex paint. Thanks.

  2. #2
    Plumber Cass's Avatar
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    There is a product called Floetrol made by Flood. It will give you a finish similar to spraying. I would try some of that for what your trying to do.

    Here is a link http://www.flood.com/Flood/Products/...aintAdditives/
    Last edited by Cass; 10-01-2006 at 06:21 PM.

  3. #3

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    Why not water? Why does it have to flash off quickly?

    Other things to try (in order of increasing strength): isopropyl alcohol, ethanol, methanol, acetone (similar to MEK).
    (important note: I'm not a pro)

  4. #4
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    To get a satisfactory result, follow the instructions on the particular paint you are using! It will say on the can somewhere, and if it is an old can and covered up in paint drips, you can probably find out on the manufacturer's website or call them.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  5. #5

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    I don't understand how one coat of paint is going to cause your door to stick. If it's that tight already, I think you should sand down your door jamb, chisel out your hinge mortises a bit, or just plane the door a little. Don't forget, the next time it gets really humid in SE PA, all the wood will swell and the door will really begin to stick (if it's that tight now).
    Last edited by Verdeboy; 10-02-2006 at 09:42 PM.

  6. #6
    Engineer chassis's Avatar
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    Good points made by all. I just want to do things better, and try to do it like the "pros". I like the boiled linseed oil trick I learned, so was hoping there was a better solution with latex. I thought maybe there was a space age way to do this, but I guess not.

    Verdeboy, I hear you on the humidity thing. I experienced this alot recently, because I am redoing all the door hardware on my front entry. This includes door hinges for both storm (wood) and main doors, as well as lockset, and the other jewelry on the door. This past September has has several wet spells interspersed with very dry weather. I have taken the opportunity to ensure the doors swing freely under all conditions.

    Going back to my initial question, I can certainly sand down a few layers of paint on the jamb, then repaint. But I was looking for the "right" way or "cool" way to do it. A-sanding I will go......

  7. #7
    Plumber jimbo's Avatar
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    You need a certain minimum film thickness for a proper paint job. Any paint is a little thick if brushed, thinner if sprayed. If you thin any paint too much, you will not get coverage. The label for any paint will give the maximum amount of thinning. But if one coat of paint will cause clearance problems, I would suggest the door is not installed correctly.

  8. #8
    Plumber Cass's Avatar
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    If you try the Floetrol you'll like it. Gives a really smooth finish so long as the prep is smooth.

  9. #9
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    Default paint

    One of my son's friends worked for a professional painter. They thinned the paint with water to the point that you could still see through the paint when it dried. The more you thin the paint the less pigment that gets applied. It makes a thinner layer, but also defeats the purpose of putting paint on in the first place.

  10. #10
    Plumber Cass's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hj
    One of my son's friends worked for a professional painter. They thinned the paint with water to the point that you could still see through the paint when it dried. The more you thin the paint the less pigment that gets applied. It makes a thinner layer, but also defeats the purpose of putting paint on in the first place.
    Yes but you are reducing the % of the part that holds it to the surface to the point that it won't adhere right. That is why there is a max amount of water allowed for thinning.

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