Oil and Water – Thou Shalt Not Mix Paint

July 7th, 2011

If you knew what was going on around this house, you would shake your tiny fists in the air and scream to the heavens, “Whhhhyyyyyyyyyy???!!!!” Or you might laugh and call us DIY idiots.

We’re doing some reno on our house. Drum roll please…we’re doing it ourselves. Painting, replacing tile, you name it.

The boob who owned the house before us had little to no clue. He’s one of those people who’s “gotta guy”…Need your electrical done? I gotta guy. Need to sew some curtains? I gotta guy. Same guy. Awkward.

For some reason, whoever-the-guy put oil-based paint randomly throughout the house. So in order to paint over it, I have to know what I’m dealing with.

So here’s an easy peasy tip that saved us some peeling headaches. How to tell oil-based paint from water-based...

Apply rubbing alcohol to a clean white cloth. Rub the cloth in a circular motion on the surface. If alcohol cleans the surface without softening the coating, then it’s oil-based. If the paint comes off on the cloth (the color transfers), then it’s water-based.

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