Is Spray Paint Permanent – Will it Last Long or Wear Off

pexels wallace chuck 5025303 Is Spray Paint Permanent - Will it Last Long or Wear Off

As an artist and a DIY enthusiast, I love creating art that is unique and colorful, and the most convenient and pocket-friendly way is using spray paints. However, one question that often bothers me is: “is spray paint permanent?” It gets me thinking if my artwork made out of love will last. The question is important because I really want my unique creations to stay fresh and last long. 

The permanence of spray paint depends on various factors, such as the type of paint, surface, and environmental conditions. Some spray paints, like Acrylic, Enamel, and, Epoxy are designed to be permanent, while others, like chalk spray paints, may fade or chip over time. Proper preparation and application can improve the longevity of spray paint projects.

There is no definite answer to the question of the permanency of spray paint; however, I will explain to you in detail the different types of paint and the surfaces they are applied on.  We will also examine the environmental conditions and other external factors that can affect the longevity of spray paint. By the end of this blog post, you will have a better understanding of whether spray paint is permanent and how to ensure your spray paint projects last for years to come.

How Long Does Spray Paint Last

The average life span of spray paint is between two and ten years, depending on the spray paint type and method adopted.

Additionally, the span of spray paints relies on a combination of factors that need to understand efficiently. And the best approach to do so is to familiarize yourself with different types of spray paints coming ahead. 

Types Of Spray Paints

Acrylic Spray Paint

The first type we have on our list is Acrylic spray paint which is known for its quick-drying properties and durability. It can last from 2 to 5 years. Acrylic resin, solvents, and pigments are the main ingredients of acrylic spray which make it super resistant to fading and cracking.

With that said, the acrylic spray is best for customizing car paints using spray guns to get durable finishing on automotive parts like dashboards, leather car seats, car rims or wheels, or even the whole car exterior

Oil-Based Spray Paint

The following type is oil-based spray paint which gives a glossy finish on metal and outdoor wooden surfaces. Unlike acrylic spray paints, oil-based spray paints don’t have water-based solvents and are suspended with turpentine or mineral spirits. Due to these strong solvents, oil-based spray paints provide strong adhesions and longer durability for up to 10 years.

Since oil-based spray paints have a relatively very long life, you can use them on various types of surfaces. It’s great for wood, glass, concrete, metal as well as all kinds of plastic.

Oil-based spray paint is a petroleum-based solvent that eliminates the need for primer. It offers a glossy finish and is suitable for decorating and changing the outlook of your outdoor furniture.

Enamel Spray Paint

The interesting thing about enamel-based spray paint is that it comes in both water and oil-based formulas. This provides an excellent opportunity for a wide range of products. As per durability, enamel spray paints last up to 5 years; however, their water-based formula is less toxic and easier to clean up.

While oil-based enamel spray paint is known for greater durability and resistance against wear and tear, Enamel paint spray is considered ideal for protecting outdoor metal furniture against harsh weather. You can also use it on indoor items of furniture and appliances. 

Lacquer Spray

A quick-drying solvent-based lacquer is known as lacquer spray paint. You will find a great variety of colors in lacquer spray paints. On furniture, musical instruments, and accessories, you can spray lacquer paints for a perfect and factory-like finish. It may be applied to many different surfaces, including wood, metal, and plastic.

Lacquer spray paint dries quickly and offers a tough, long-lasting finish that lasts up to 7 years and is frequently used on furniture and other home furnishings. Although it dries rapidly, the best results take several coats.

Chalk Spray Paint

Chalk spray paints are used for getting a distressed and vintage look. This spray paint is synthesized with solvents, binding agents, and pigments in an aerosol can. Often it is used in craft projects and can be easily applied on ceramic, metal, and wood surfaces, and it will remain good for 3 good years

Chalk spray paint has a matte texture and is water-based. It is frequently employed for do-it-yourself jobs like painting furniture or decorative objects. The drying time of chalk paint is 15 minutes, as you would have already read from our blog about it, and it is not waterproof but water-resistant, even when used on outside furniture

Metallic Spray Paint

Little metallic particles in metallic spray paint give the finished product a reflective appearance. Although it can be used on other materials, it is frequently utilized on metal surfaces.

Metallic spray paint can last for several years, up to 10 years, if taken care of. However, if the weather is unpredictably bad with spells of high humidity and frequent heat spells, the longevity of metallic spray paint can be adversely affected to come down to as low as 1 to 2 years.

Textured Spray Paint

Spray paint with a textured finish can be used to add texture to a range of surfaces, including metal, wood, plastic, and more. When applied, the granules or particles in textured spray paint produce a textured or rough finish.

Textured spray paint gives surfaces a distinctive finish, like sand or stone, and is frequently used for ornamental purposes. Life after the application is about 5 years if maintained well; however, the paint may chip even before in harsh weather conditions. 

Epoxy Spray Paint

Epoxy spray paint type is distinctive from others and can withstand harsh environments efficiently. Epoxy resin is the main component of spray paint which works as an excellent adhesion and sticks to almost any surface, including plastic, concrete, metal, and wood.

A fun fact is when it comes to durability, the lifespan of epoxy coating is not measured in years but in decades, and epoxy spray paints have examples of up to 30 years or more. It’s one of the toughest paint materials used without primers, and once coated, it won’t take off easily.

PS: If you’re wondering how long spray paint takes to dry, have a look at our blog, which tells you details about the drying time of different types of paints.  

Summarized Table

is spray paint permanent

Factors Affecting Spray Paint Permanency

The permanency of spray paints can be affected by various factors, such as the quality of the paint, the surface preparation, and the environmental conditions during application and curing.

The quality of the paint can influence its durability and resistance to fading or chipping over time.

Proper surface preparation, including cleaning and priming, can also affect adhesion and prevent flaking.

The temperature and humidity during application and curing can impact the drying time and overall finish of the paint.

Additionally, exposure to UV light, moisture, and chemicals can cause the paint to degrade or lose its color. Therefore, choosing high-quality spray paints and ensuring proper surface preparation and environmental conditions can help to ensure the permanency of spray paints.

How does the Quality of the Spray Paint affect its Permanency

The quality of the spray paint can have a significant impact on its permanency. High-quality spray paints typically contain more durable and long-lasting pigments and binders, which can resist fading, chipping, and flaking over time. In contrast, lower-quality spray paints may contain lower-quality pigments and binders, which can lead to a less durable finish and a shorter lifespan.

Additionally, high-quality spray paints often have better adhesion properties, which can help to ensure that the paint adheres properly to the surface and does not peel or flake off. Overall, investing in high-quality spray paints can lead to a more permanent and long-lasting finish.

How does Proper Surface Preparation affect Spray Paint’s Permanency

The surface preparation is a critical factor that can affect the permanency of spray paints. Proper surface preparation can ensure that the paint adheres properly to the surface and does not flake or peel off over time.

Surfaces should be cleaned thoroughly to remove dirt, grease, and other contaminants that can interfere with adhesion. Priming the surface can also improve adhesion and provide a smooth and even surface for the paint to adhere to.

Additionally, proper surface preparation can prevent rust and corrosion, which can cause the paint to peel or flake off. Therefore, taking the time to properly prepare the surface before applying spray paint can significantly improve its permanency.

How do Temperature and Humidity affect the permanency of Spray Paints

Temperature and humidity are two factors that can significantly affect the permanency of spray paints. Here’s a breakdown of how each one impacts spray paint:


The ideal temperature for spraying is typically between 50-85°F (10-29°C). Temperatures outside of this range can affect the drying time of the paint, leading to inconsistent finishes and adhesion issues. If the temperature is too low, the paint will take longer to dry, causing it to become tacky or crack. If the temperature is too high, the paint will dry too quickly, leading to a rough and uneven finish.


Humidity levels outside of the range of 40-60% can cause issues with spray paint permanency. High humidity can lead to moisture getting trapped between the surface and the paint, which can cause the paint to bubble or blister. On the other hand, low humidity can cause the paint to dry too quickly, leading to cracking or peeling. The ideal humidity level for spraying is below 85%, and it’s important to monitor the humidity level throughout the entire process, including during the curing time.

In summary, the temperature and humidity can have a significant impact on the permanency of spray paints, so it’s essential to consider these factors during the application and curing process.

How Does Exposure to UV light, Moisture, and Chemicals affect the Permanency of Spray Paints

Spray paints have become a popular choice for a wide range of applications, from graffiti to furniture refinishing. However, exposure to UV light, moisture, and chemicals can have a significant impact on their permanency. Here’s a breakdown of how each of these factors can affect the long-term durability of spray paints.

Exposure to UV light:

When exposed to UV light, spray paints can fade or even peel over time. This is because UV light causes the chemical bonds in the paint to break down, leading to the loss of color and adhesion. To combat this, it is recommended to use spray paints that contain UV-resistant additives or to apply a clear protective coating over the paint to shield it from UV rays.

Pro Tip: Spray paint can fade away over time if exposed to UV light; therefore, it is best to use Montana water-based spray paint that has UV inhibitors.


Moisture can cause spray paints to corrode, leading to rust or discoloration. This is particularly problematic for metal surfaces. To prevent moisture damage, it is important to ensure that the surface is completely dry before applying the spray paint. Additionally, using a rust-inhibiting primer before painting can provide an extra layer of protection.


Spray paints can be vulnerable to damage from chemicals, including cleaners, solvents, and even certain types of paints. When exposed to chemicals, spray paints can dissolve or lose their adhesion, leading to flaking or peeling. To avoid this, it is important to choose spray paints that are resistant to chemicals or to apply a clear protective coating over the paint.

By selecting high-quality spray paints and taking proper precautions, you can help ensure that your painted surfaces remain durable and long-lasting.

The Two Types of Surfaces: Porous and Non-Porous

The permanency of spray paint can vary depending on the type of surface it is applied to. We shall now explore how permanent spray paint is when applied to porous and non-porous surfaces.

Porous Surfaces

1 Is Spray Paint Permanent - Will it Last Long or Wear Off

Porous surfaces, such as wood or concrete, have small openings or pores that can absorb the paint. When spray paint is applied to a porous surface, it can be more difficult to achieve a smooth, even finish. The paint may also be prone to chipping or flaking over time, especially if the surface is exposed to weather or heavy use.

To improve the permanency of spray paint on porous surfaces, it is recommended to use a primer specifically designed for porous surfaces before applying the paint. This will help the paint adhere better and create a more durable finish.

Non-Porous Surfaces

2 Is Spray Paint Permanent - Will it Last Long or Wear Off

Non-porous surfaces, such as metal or glass, do not have small openings or pores like porous surfaces do. This means that spray paint can adhere better to non-porous surfaces and create a more permanent finish. However, non-porous surfaces can still present challenges for spray paint, as they are often smooth and can make it difficult for the paint to stick.

To improve the permanency of spray paint on non-porous surfaces, it is recommended to use a primer specifically designed for non-porous surfaces before applying the paint. This will help the paint adhere better and create a more durable finish.

What is the Application Technique to Help Increase the Permanency of Spray Paints

Not only the right spray paint but the right application technique plays a crucial role in enhancing the durability of spray paint. Here are certain things to consider while dispensing spray.


Keep a consistent distance while applying paint; move it swiftly.

Number of Coats:

To avoid peeling and chipping, apply multiple light coats than applying a single thick coat.

Drying Time:

Give each coat some time to dry before applying the next one, and this trick helps the paint last longer than usual.

Frequently Asked Questions

What to do if Spray Paint sticks to your hand?

Spray painting is fun until it covers your hair, nails, or skin! The best way to remove spray paint from skin is using acetone or nail polish remover.

How Long Does Spray Paint Last?

The paint spray paint, under optimal conditions, can last between two and ten years.

Does Spray Paint Wash Off?

Once you spray the paint and allow it to settle, it will resist water or other cleaning solution.

Are All Spray Paints Permanent?

Not every spray paint is permanent Chalkboard spray paint, and temporary marking spreads can be removed with a damp cloth if the surface is too porous or unclean.

Is Spray Paint Permanent on Metal?

If the surface is prepared well, it will stick.

Can Spray Pain Remove from Rims?

Yes, you can remove spray paint from rims by identifying the material of the rim and using a spray paint remover afterward. Brush it well with a brush and rinse with water

Wrap Up

The answer is that Spray paint has various circumstances, but if I have to sum up, it neither remains forever nor goes off completely. If the spray is applied while considering all the factors mentioned above, it will last between two and ten years which is a fair deal! Because obviously, you don’t want your spray to fade away before the season ends. You can last your Spray paint longer with the right product and technique.

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