How to dilute water-based paint

How and what to dilute water-based paint? This question arises quite often. The right solution is to guarantee a reliable and durable coating and no complications during work.

How to dilute water-based paint

When it is necessary to dilute water-emulsion compounds

Water emulsion is a composition based on water. In it in the form of small droplets are various fillers, which give the material the final properties. As the solution is applied to the surface, some of the liquid is absorbed, and some evaporates. Due to the rapid removal of moisture, the protective layer is formed after a short time. The final drying depends on the surface material.

How to dilute water-based paint

A diagram showing the process of evaporation of water with the subsequent formation of strong bonds during the application of water-based paint to the surface

Now on sale there are various variants of water-based (water-dispersed) paint. Many manufacturers produce products under their own brands. Therefore, it is advisable to dilute the mixture taking into account the individual characteristics of each variety in the following cases:

  • If, after opening, it is found that the solution is too thick, then it must be diluted. Determine that the consistency is not suitable for application, it is quite simple: for this the composition is well mixed. If a large amount of products remains on the stirring object, which does not flow back, then the use of a solvent is necessary.

How to dilute water-based paint

Diluting the paint is important not to overdo it, because the thickness of the film when the composition is diluted decreases, and hence the performance of the coating decreases

  • If the tools used are difficult to apply a thickened composition. The process is carried out manually and mechanically:
    • For the first version, brushes and rollers are used. Manual treatment of walls and ceilings requires that the structure of the mixture is more viscous. This ensures uniformity of the layer and the absence of streaks that arise due to the fact that the paint is too liquid.
    • The second method is the use of an atomizer. This adaptation greatly facilitates the process and allows you to perform work on large areas. The peculiarity of the instrument is that the dye composition under pressure passes through the nozzle, due to which the slurry falls more evenly on the base. Therefore, to use a spray gun, the consistency must be liquid. In comparison with the previous version, the viscosity decreases by 1.5-2 times. The exact proportions depend on the model of the instrument and the type of water-emulsion composition.

How to dilute water-based paint

Currently, specialized spray guns for water-emulsion paints are available on the market, both electric and manual types

  • If the conditions of storage and use of products are violated. It happens that the container after opening is loosely clogged. If the situation is not corrected in time, the material will become completely useless. But at a certain stage, when the mixture has not yet dried, it can be restored.

On a note! If the composition is liquid, this can be corrected in two ways: let the water evaporate a little or add a hardener. The second method is more complicated, it is used in cases where the paint does not initially have the desired consistency.

The use of water for the dilution of paint

The right choice of diluent is the key to success. There are many tips and recommendations on the use of various substances for this process. But the only true solution will be the use of water, since it is the basis of the product.

For best dilution, the liquid should advise certain parameters:

  1. Temperature. Water should be at room temperature. If the work is carried out outside, a component slightly higher than the ambient temperature is added to the facade solution.

    How to dilute water-based paint

    When deciding how much to add a solvent to the paint, it is important to take into account that at low temperatures the composition has a tendency to thicken, and in the heat it becomes more liquid

  2. Presence of impurities. Water is an excellent solvent, so it can contain a large number of imperceptible substances, which have a detrimental effect on the color solution (reduce its properties, change color). The best dilution occurs with distilled water. You can get purified liquid at home in a variety of ways. If the impurities are too active, the diluent is brought to a boil and left to stand.

How to dilute water-based paint

Distilled water can be found in almost any building or autoshop, less common in pharmacies

Attention! There is advice that the dilution can be done with the help of solvents used for enamel or oil paint. It is not right. If such a substance is added to a water-based emulsion, then often the mixture simply folds. In this case, the reaction may not appear immediately, which is misleading.


The greatest problems (especially in those who perform all the work independently and without experience) arise because of the proportions. The fact is that there is no clear correlation, follow the parameters that each particular producer points to the label.

General recommendations look like this:

  1. Up to 10% of the liquid can be used for dilution. In this case, the exact parameters depend on the material of the surface and the paint brand.

    How to dilute water-based paint

    On the label manufacturer always indicates the permissible percentage of diluent to the total volume of the paint

  2. Different techniques for doing work suggest that the breeding will be different. For example, if a water-based acrylic compound is applied in three layers, then for the first application, 5-8% of water is added to the solution. The mixture obtained is well distributed over the base. This coating is often primed. For the second layer 2-3% of the liquid is used, the third does not require dilution. This allows you to get a high-quality and reliable surface.
  3. Adding water is not always justified. If there is an optimum consistency and viscosity suitable for the use of a hand tool, water will only increase the ink consumption.

On a note! Excessive dilution is practiced by unscrupulous masters. This makes it easier to lay each layer, reducing the decorative effect. In addition, if the purchase is not made by the owner of the apartment, this makes it possible to increase the estimate.

How to dilute the paint?

To dilute the selected material with water, there is no need to use complex equipment. To work, you need a simple set of tools:

  • clean container of suitable size;
  • a drill with a nozzle-mixer;
  • a small spatula (if you want to remove lumps).

Scheme of breeding:

  1. The paint is poured into a container. The process is carried out neatly, the composition is mixed a little.
  2. Water is added gradually. Even taking into account the proportions specified by the manufacturer, it is better to constantly check the viscosity.
  3. After adding each serving, everything is thoroughly mixed. If lumps are visible, then homogeneity has not yet been achieved.

It should be borne in mind that the volume affects the color, so it is added diluted in the liquid.