What Are Paint Boogers And How Do You Prevent Them?

Paint boogers aren't as gross as they sound. They occur when some of the wet paint dries in the can and make it lumpy. You may not notice these impurities until after you've finished changing the color of your walls, and that's when you'll see specs that look like boogers in the paint instead of a smooth application. Fortunately, there's a simple way to prevent these boogers from affecting the final look of your home. All you need is a strainer and a clean can to pour the paint into.

When you first open a jar of paint, you won't have to worry about boogers. They start appearing when the container is left entirely or partially open. This is because the color must be exposed to air to dry. If you're using new paint or lacquer, you need to remember to seal the lid because they dry quickly. First, it'll set into boogers on the cover and the sides of the can. Once they separate, they mix in with the wet paint, ruining your walls if you don't strain them out.

Strain the boogers away

If you notice paint boogers in your jar, the simple fix is to strain them. You can buy one from your local hardware or dollar store. Another option is to use the mesh strainer from your kitchen, as long as you buy a new one for your food. You'll also need a new container big enough for the amount of paint you have. It should be clean inside because you don't want to risk any impurities mixing with the color you just strained.

First, open both jars and place the mesh strainer over the clean container. Then pour the paint into the new one. Your filter will likely get clogged when the boogers can't pass through. To fix this, stop pouring more paint and empty the boogers into another container. Now you can continue removing the lumps from the wet color. Later, you must visit your local household hazardous waste collection site to throw the boogers away.

How to prevent paint boogers

You can implement extra steps while painting to prevent boogers from accumulating. First, you should never work straight from the can. Doing this leaves all of the paint exposed to air, causing some of it to dry and create boogers while the rest is still wet. There's also a greater chance of dust and debris ending up in the can. Instead, you should decant your color into a different container. Depending on the project you're working on, you can use a paint cup or a tray. Always remember to completely close the can once you pour some of the paint out.

Using liners is also helpful if you plan to reuse these containers. They lower the chance of boogers getting in your paint because it's like you are using a new tray each time. It may seem okay to let the color dry completely and peel it off before using the cup again, but you risk not removing it all. Then it will become lumps in your paint. When you finish your project, some decanted paint may be left in the other containers. Since it's been exposed to air for an extended period, always use a strainer to filter the color when pouring it back into the can.