*How Not To Store Latex Paint*
20 October 2014
I needed to touch up some paint in an apartment the other week; but, when I opened the can of interior flat latex paint I found the pigment in the paint had turned into a chunky goo. The clear liquid had separated out and was on top, like paint will do when it sits for months. The pigment that is normally smooth and easy to stir back in, had formed into a kind of chunky goo, not a hard solid mass like paint will turn into when the lid is left cracked opened and the paint dries out. I asked my landlord, a former construction contractor, if paint that had been exposed to freezing temperatures could be salvaged. He told me if it was latex it would be ruined.
Last Fall, when I was preparing for winter, I left several partial cans of paint on the patio, thinking that at worst the cold would freeze the paint and it would separate but I could always stir it back together again. Having spent most of my life in Southern California, I often stored paint under the cover of an awning, or in a shed, with the only worry being that the paint might dry out in the can if the lid wasn't sealed. Well, Montana is different. Leaving the paint out exposed to prolonged freezing temperatures turned it into unusable muck that now needs to be taken to the hazardous waste disposal site at the county landfill. 6 partial cans of latex paint ruined by the winter freeze. Now I know that I can't store the paint anywhere that will freeze.John1lt
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