Use This Type Of Paint To Help Prevent Rust On Your Surfaces

Rust forms on iron, or iron alloy surfaces due to the reaction between iron, oxygen, and water. During this reaction, the oxygen and water react with iron to form flakes of iron oxide hydrate on the metal surface. Unfortunately for homeowners, many metal household items are vulnerable to rust. Patio furniture and decor is a notorious example, since these metal objects are left exposed to the moisture needed for corrosion to occur. But the good news is that there's a simple way to prevent metal from rusting, or even remedy items already affected by the unsightly condition. All you need is a suitable paint and primer to coat the metal and block moisture and oxygen from reacting with the iron content.

While several types of paint can form a protective coating against rust, oil-based paints are the best choice. That's because oil paint is particularly long-lasting and resistant against moisture — which is the ultimate cause of rust. With oil paint and primer, you can shield your favorite items from corrosion-causing elements and breathe new life into rusted surfaces. But this paint is not easy to work with, so you'll need to know how to handle and apply it properly, as we'll explain below.

How to apply oil-based paint properly

Before you start the job, consider the location of the object. Unfortunately, despite all its advantages, oil-based paint does not work in every location. For one, oil-based paint is quite vulnerable to mildew. In particular, this type of fungus targets oil paints that have a high content of linseed oil. Another issue with oil-based paint is its tendency to turn yellow when applied to areas that don't get much light. So, if you intend to rust-proof some metal piping in a utility room or basement, it's possible that the lack of light will cause the oil paint coating to turn yellow. On the other hand, this pigmentation should not be a problem in well-lit areas.

If you've decided that the location is ideal for oil paint, the next step is to find the right brush. Brushes that are designed for oil-based paints will be marked accordingly on their label. Next, cover the area adjacent to the object you're painting. Oil-based paint is difficult to remove if you smear it on things, so it's best to protect the surrounding area from accidental stains. A final word of caution: Make sure that the work area is well-ventilated, since oil-based paints release a large volume of volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Now, go ahead and apply a coat of oil-based primer. Let it dry per the manufacturer's instructions, then paint the object. Oil paints take longer to dry than water-based paints, so you'll have to wait about eight hours before applying the second coat.

Best paints for covering up existing rust spots and how to use them

Paint not only protects surfaces from corrosion, it's also an effective means of restoring rusted surfaces. A few types of paint excel at this task, and oil-based paint is an excellent choice for outdoor objects because it creates a robust layer of defense against corrosion-causing moisture. For best results, you should use oil-based paint in conjunction with an oil primer to treat the affected area and seal it off effectively. Alternatively, you can use either acrylic latex or epoxy paints to conceal rust spots. Use these paints together with an iron oxide primer like this one from The Home Depot.

Regardless of the paint type, there are a few key steps you need to take to paint over rusted spots effectively. Once you've ensured proper ventilation and covered the adjacent area to protect it from paint smears, give the rusted areas a good scrub with a wire brush to remove loose iron oxide particles. Then, wipe the area with a rag and sand it down until the surface is as smooth as possible. Now, wash this surface with soapy water and dry it. Finally, you can apply the primer, then the paint of choice once the primer has dried. Two coats of paint should suffice in most cases.