What is Base Paint? Everything You Need to Know

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When the time comes to paint, you are often given a suggestion to use base paint as an underliner before the real coating. So, everybody should know what is base paint.

Then you begin to wonder why is it you need base paint when painting. Another question that also arises is why to use base paint instead of just applying an extra coat of paint. But as you go on with this article, you get to know that applying base paint saves you more energy, time, and money!

The base paint is specifically formulated to ensure the adhesion of the topcoat of paint to the surface below it, providing the best-looking and longest-lasting finish. Base paints are designed to forcefully fill and bond to underlying surfaces. If the topcoat of paint on your work starts to peel or the surface doesn’t absorb it evenly because you didn’t recommend using base paint, you’re going to have to start from scratch or worse.

Also, base paint is different from colored paint applied to walls. That is, it is formulated from a set of different materials. Such as resins are the chemicals that make up the base paint and help create a layer on the walls that allows the paint to stay on and also cover previous paint colors.

Types Of Base Paint

Base paint can be divided into 2 types. i.e.

  • Accent Base Paint
  • Deep Base Paint

Accent Base Paint

Accent-based paints are those colors used to highlight a space within an environment. Generally, it is usually a color that contrasts with the more abundant tones of the space in which we are using it. We usually use the accent color to highlight some aspect of the decoration, for example, a headboard that we like in the bedroom, the sofa in the dining room, a mirror, a floor lamp, the area where we place an armchair or the study area in the children’s room.

Deep Base Paint

Meanwhile, deep base paint has to do with the ability of paint to be tinted due to the amount of white pigment that has been added to it to make it seem opaque. Most house paints tend to have lighter colors, this is because of the sparse amount of white pigment in the house paint to make it come out brilliant and for more coverage.

How to Use Base Paint?

The following steps will guide you through how to apply a base paint before finally painting:

Step 1: Make sure all the walls that are to be painted are free of dirt and dust so as not to leave marks after the painting is done. If you also notice there are holes in the walls, ensure to fill them up with either cement fillings or other corresponding materials. Let them dry up, then go ahead to apply the base paint.

Step 2: Get a good base paint and ensure you read the instructions on the container in other to mix the base paint appropriately. Also, do well to cover the surfaces where you don’t want paint on.

Step 3: Now that you have successfully applied the base paint, make sure it dries off completely before going ahead to do the normal painting.

Application of Base Paint on Wood

The porous nature of virgin wood necessitates the use of a primer. If the paint is used on virgin wood directly, the virgin wood will absorb solvents of the paint thereby causing the paint to dry prematurely. When the paint dries quickly, Rapid absorption can disrupt the process it ought to run due to the absence of base paint, making the paint weak and prone to cracking and chipping which we are sure you don’t want!

And remember that all varieties of virgin wood have some kind of color. Without a base paint, it may be necessary to apply multiple coats of paint to darken the grain of the wood and achieve an even, uniform color.

Base Paint Application on Metals

Although not all metals require the use of base paint, it is highly recommended to use it if the metal is exposed to moisture. Rust begins the very moment that water comes into contact with bare metal. Anticorrosive agents are usually used in base paints such as zinc to combat rust.

Sometimes it is necessary to paint a metal surface if it is not in perfect condition. If the surface you are about to paint has rust on it, you must clean the metal thoroughly, even though you can’t possibly remove all the rust. Instead, special base paint that chemically converts oxide to solid metal salts is a good choice. The metal surface will not be as shiny and clean, but it is much better for painting than a rusty surface where rust will eventually break through the paint.

Plastic Surfaces Can be Base Painted

The most common reason why base paint is added to a plastic surface is to achieve a drastic color change. Base paint reduces the number of coats of paint required to completely cover the previous colors. They also help the paint to fully adhere to the painted surface. Some base paints are designed to paint plastic which is not water-based. Make sure that the propellant or solvent in the base paint does not dissolve or distort the plastic you are painting.

Why do you need to apply Base Paint before painting?

Most get super excited when doing work on their own interior painting. But using base paint before color paint is not a regular idea everyone knows about aside from the professionals.

  • Applying a base paint coat is key to getting the paint job: better aesthetics; more durable; cheaper (in the amount of color paint needed and the painter’s time to achieve the proper finish) according to those who know about it.
  • From a practical point of view, the base paint helps the finish paint adhere better, reducing the chances of peeling or embedding. It also ensures that the surface painted looks very attractive and comes out brilliantly.
  •  Virtually any base paint will provide the basic benefits, but so-called “specialty base paint ” can do much more. Which one to use depends on the surface you are painting, what city you are doing the job in, and the condition of the house.


You don’t save anything when you don’t use base paint in your interior painting jobs: you pay for it in more paint, more coats of paint, and more time for the same payment;

The primer ensures that vinyl paints a uniform appearance, it also ensures to give high gloss finish paints (mostly epoxies) a more uniform gloss finish.

You can also check: What is paint primer?

When you are low on budget and time, it may cross your mind to skip the idea of applying base paint before the real painting. However, you might not quickly tell the impact of missing it but it is definitely going to be a long-term consequence for missing that essential step in painting. So why don’t you just do it right and enjoy the forthcoming results of the beautiful painting?

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