What to do with leftover paint

  • Posted: Jul 10, 2016
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What to do with leftover paint

It’s very rare to get to the end of redecorating to find that you’ve used up all your paint. It’s quite usual that there’ll be half a tin or so of leftover paint, and most people don’t know what to do with it.

Have you ever popped the lid back on and stored the tin in your garage, thinking that you’ll be able to use it again later if you need to touch up the walls? Then the tin lives in a corner for years and is completely dried out when you think about using it. We can help you avoid this situation.

Have a look at these three options for dealing with your leftover paint simply and safely.

Dry out leftover paint

Leave with lid off to dry out

If you just want to throw away your left overs, it’s important to do so in a way that’s safe for the environment. The tin – whether it’s metal or plastic – can be recycled. However, this can’t be done while it still has paint in it.

Place the open tin in a well-ventilated place. Outdoors and in the sunshine is the best as the paint will dry out quickly. Just be sure that’s it is in a safe place that children and animals can’t get to.

Depending on how much paint is left over, you could need to leave the tin out in the open for several days. Once all of it is completely dry, the paint should pop out of tin in one piece and can then be safely thrown away.


Store properly sealed and in a safe place

If you do want to keep the paint for touch ups at a later date, then it needs to be stored properly. The tin must be properly sealed as soon as you’ve finished with it. Use a hammer to push the lid down as far as it will go. You can also use masking tape around the lid as an added layer of protection. Alternatively, use jars that seal completely and transfer your left over paint into them for storage.

To store the paint, put it in a cool, dark place that doesn’t get wet or damp. If the space gets too warm, the paint will dry out quicker even with the lid sealed properly. If the area is damp, mould could start to grow in the paint and make it unusable.

Use up on accents around the room

The last option is to avoid the problem all together by using up the paint. It’s wonderful to keep a theme running through a room and the easiest way to do that is by matching colours throughout your décor.

Take the paint and use it on a variety of accessories and furniture in the room. Good options are your picture frames, the backboard of standing shelves, small pieces of furniture like side tables, or the legs of stools and chairs.

Gallery credit www.athomeinlove.com

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