Painting a House in Inclement Weather: A Comprehensive Guide



Painting a house is a project that often requires flexibility, as it can be challenging to find the perfect weather conditions. Waiting for clear skies and ideal temperatures might delay the painting process indefinitely. However, understanding when it is possible to paint in less-than-perfect weather can help you stay on schedule. In this guide, we will explore the considerations and techniques for painting a house when it’s raining or during semi-rainy conditions.

Can You Paint in the Rain?

Surface Condition Matters

  • Avoid painting when the surface is currently wet.
  • Do not paint on a surface that has recently been wet.
  • Interior painting is usually unaffected by rainy weather.
  • Humidity only becomes an issue if condensation forms on the surface.
  • Low temperatures (generally below 34°F) can delay paint curing.

Painting in Rainy Conditions

  • You can paint both the exterior and interior of your house during rainy weather as long as the rain doesn’t touch the painted surface.
  • Ensure rain doesn’t splash through open windows or screens onto painted areas.
  • Expect longer drying times for paint in humid conditions, which may delay applying a second coat.
  • Watch out for condensation forming on the surface.

Determining When to Paint in the Rain

  • While experts recommend avoiding painting during rainy conditions, it may not be feasible in rain-prone areas.
  • Painting season is determined by climatic conditions, not specific seasons.
  • Consider current and recent conditions:
    • If the surface is visibly wet or has latent moisture, wait until it dries completely.
    • Certain areas may take longer to dry, such as shaded sections, trim, molding, or areas with hairline cracks or nail holes.
  • Check the temperature:
    • Ensure the outside temperature meets the minimum recommendations on the paint can.
    • Lower temperatures extend drying time.
    • Avoid painting if temperatures are predicted to drop below the minimum within 10 hours of application.

Fixing a Rained-Upon Painted Surface

  • It is challenging to fix a painted surface that has been rained on but hasn’t fully cured.
  • Wait until the paint has dried completely.
  • Use a straight-edge razor to cut away raised lines of paint caused by water.
  • Lightly sand the affected area if necessary.
  • Repaint the surface to achieve a uniform finish.

Remember, it’s crucial to prioritize the quality and longevity of your paint job over rushing to complete it in unfavorable weather conditions. By considering the surface condition, weather factors, and proper repair techniques, you can ensure a successful painting project even when it’s raining.

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