Can You Use Exterior Paint Inside? [6 Precautions To Take]

When it comes to a DIY(Do It Yourself)  project, you’ll want to try to save as much money as possible or make the most of your materials. In reality, when people do a DIY project to decorate their home, they choose to use as much exterior paint as possible. 

Can I paint the interior of my house with exterior paint? This is a question that many people ask. 

We can’t help but respond with a yes and a no to this question, but we’ll explain why later. Many homeowners are tempted to paint their interiors with exterior paint because it is much more robust and long-lasting than other forms of paint. 

If this is real, there are a few explanations so many people choose not to.

Let’s take a glance at the outside paint first.

What Is Interior & Exterior Paint?

  • Both paints are made with an equivalent basic ingredients which is as follows:
  • Resins: The paint is kept to the surface by resins. Silicone, acrylic, and epoxy are the foremost common materials used.
  • Additives: Paint additives improve the physical properties of your paint, like water resistance, UV resistance, and sturdiness .
  • Solvents: The solvent is the part that creates paint “wet.” When the paint dries, this ingredient evaporates.
  • Pigments: The pigment is liable for the colour of the paint.

Exterior Paint

Exterior paint, to put it simply, is paint that is resistant to the climate condition. 

This ensures that even the most extreme weather conditions would not harm the finish, saving you the time and expense of having to repaint the exterior of your home.

Important Features Of Exterior Paint

  • The exterior paint is subjected to a spread of environmental conditions. As a result, it must protect against precipitation from rain and snow, also as ultraviolet from sunlight. It must also guard against fungal growth.
  • Fading and mildew resistance is made into the outside paints. they need to be fade-resistant since they’re exposed to UV radiation also as extremely high temperatures.
  • Soft resins are utilized in exterior paints. they’re also very adaptable as a result of this. As a result, they’re immune to cracking during contraction or expansion. 
  • This permits them to face up to the negative effects of moisture and temperature fluctuations.
  • The exterior sort of paint is often applied to a spread of substrates by simply adjusting the sheen. A house’s exterior absorbs small quantities of water during rain. Flat paint won’t bubble, allowing water to flee .
  • Exterior paint is dangerous for indoor use because it releases more volatile organic compounds. It also needs sunshine to heal.

Chemical Formulations For Exterior Paint

Exterior paints are designed to withstand the elements. Flexible acrylic resins in quality latex exterior paint extend and contract with a home’s siding during severe weather changes from hot to icy cold. 

These paints are extremely water resistant and contain UV-blocking additives to avoid premature deterioration from the constant abuse of direct sunlight. Mildew spores and tannin stains from wet dropping leaves, as well as bleed-through from sappy wood knots, are covered by other additives.

Interior Paint

The aim of interior paint is to cover the interior of your house. It isn’t as long-lasting as exterior paint, but it can survive scrubbing and washing on a regular basis. It is not, however, waterproof or weather-resistant.

Important  Features Of Interior Paint

The following are the key features of interior paint:

  • The aim of interior paint is for adornment and aesthetics. At an equivalent time, interior paint adds dampness resistance, easy to scrub , and simple upkeep.
  • Interior paint is meant to face up to abrasion. it’s built to be more fragile than exterior paint because it shares space with people.
  • The interior sort of paint is stain-resistant and scrubbable. It doesn’t have any fade-resistant properties because it is not exposed to sunlight. It also doesn’t need sunlight to heal.
  • It’s also mechanically cleanable . It is easy to wash roller and brush marks, also as marks and spots left by children and pets.
  • Low or no volatile organic compounds are needed in interior paint. This lowers health risks and is vital for maintaining indoor air quality.

Chemical Formulations For Interior Paint

Interior paints, unlike exterior paints, are intended to withstand heavy indoor traffic, which often results in bumps and scrapes against walls and woodwork. 

Since interior painted dividers are more noticeable than outside siding, inside paints are figured with resins and added additive substances that make a smooth complexion that opposes tidying and scouring. 

Paints for interior walls often include additives that reduce spatter when applied with a brush or roller.

Benefits Of Using Paint On Both The Interior And Exterior Of Your Home

While exterior paints can be used indoors, they are only a second-best option. 

Exterior paints can appear to be better both inside and out at first glance because they are durable enough to withstand harsh outdoor conditions. 

Interior paints, on the other hand, are ideally formulated and prepared to cope with the difficulties that indoor environments present. Interior paints also provide home decorators with certain practical benefits. 

Most exterior paints come in three different finishes: flat, semigloss, and gloss-enamel, but interior paints can come in up to six different finishes, including satin, eggshell, and matte.

Is It Possible To Mix Exterior And Interior Paint?

It’s simple to combine interior and exterior paint in one bucket or can, but it may be a waste of both. It’s not a good idea to mix exterior paint with interior paint or vice versa. 

The colours aren’t formulated the same way, even though they have the same foundation and producer. They are made up of various binders, pigments, and additives. 

Sun, wind, rain, snow, humidity, and other outdoor extremes are all taken into account when creating exterior paint. Interior blends don’t have the adhesion and elasticity criteria. 

Exterior paints are incompatible with interior paints due to the additives and other materials used in them.

Interior and exterior colour formulas are continually evolving to meet the needs of unique environments inside and out. What worked five, ten, or thirty years ago might no longer be valid today. 

It’s possible to make a functional paint by mixing water-based with water-based or oil-based with oil-based of an equivalent sheen, but where do you put it? 

It will be a diluted exterior paint that will not be able to withstand the elements. Also after it’s dried, exterior blends contain more chemicals and VOCs, making them unsafe to use indoors. Outside paint also has different levellers than interior paint, as well as binders for surfaces other than drywall and additives for tougher environments. So, while it’s simple to combine leftover interior and exterior paints in one can, the results won’t always be as expected.

Painting surfaces with a combination of residual interior and exterior paint also results in a film with a unique texture, longevity, drying time, and adhesion. It’s possible that the final product will bubble, flake, crack, or peel. 

And, despite the fact that the colour hues are similar at first, they can change. So, while it’s okay to combine them, it’s not a good idea.

What Happens If We Use Exterior Paint Inside?

For many people, using exterior paint indoors seems to be the natural solution to those common problems, and although it’s possible, there are some serious considerations to be made.

Let’s know about can you use exterior paint inside.

Given that bathrooms are subjected to regular humidity and moisture stresses, the difficulty of whether or not exterior paint should be utilized in a toilet seems reasonable.

Moisture buildup within the bathroom can cause wall damage, and even worse. within the walls, there’s mould and mildew. this will happen if there’s not enough ventilation (for example, if there’s not a window within the bathroom or if there’s not a toilet fan), but using exterior paint inside will prevent these problems. 

However, there are certain precautions to take under consideration , because they are often extremely dangerous if not used correctly.

👉 Paint fumes, also referred to as Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs), are the foremost active chemical in outdoor coatings and may be very dangerous if inhaled.

👉 When using an automatic paint sprayer, this is often far more likely because the paint is misted into the world instead of applied on to the wall.

VOC’s job is to stay the pigment within the paint in situ and to tie it to the surface to which it’s applied. As a result, the standard and performance of an outside coating are hooked into this potentially hazardous aspect.

These VOC fumes aren’t only harmful for the atmosphere, but they will even be toxic to humans and animals if inhaled. Lightheadedness, headaches, and nausea are all common symptoms of VOC inhalation.

👉 People with weakened immune systems are more susceptible to VOCs’ adverse effects and should experience respiratory problems as a result. 

So, if you’re curious if you ought to use exterior paint inside, take the required precautions before doing so. Illnesses can worsen, resulting in cancer and other life-threatening illnesses.

Can You Use Exterior Paint Inside? [6 Precautions To Take]

When painting the interiors of your home with exterior paints, it is vital to think about the precautions that have to be taken to stop the health hazards that accompany them. 

You’ll never be too careful when it involves paint fumes, regardless of how inconvenient it’s for you and your family. When using exterior paint for your interiors, there are a couple of important precautions to require .

👉 The house must be adequately ventilated before, during, and after painting. Avoid using outside paints inside if your home has tiny windows and low cross ventilation.

👉 Choose outdoor paints with a lower percentage of volatile organic compounds (VOCs). This will cost a touch more in some cases, but it’s highly recommended.

👉 Remove yourself from the house before the painting starts, and find a short lived residence for a minimum of six months after the painting is completed. This is often how long gaseous emissions from outdoor paints will last.

👉 Whenever you reach the house within the time-frame described above, use a high-quality mask .

👉If you’re in or round the home, use fans the maximum amount as possible with all the windows and doors open.

👉 To stay fumes to a minimum, confirm all tins are properly covered with lids when not in use, and do not leave paint lying around in trays.

You can read our article to know in detail about the difference between interior and exterior paint.


You’ll find all the details you need in the article on can you use exterior paint inside, as well as safety measures for using exterior paints within your home; the decision is yours. 

However, as a reminder or in response to the issue of whether exterior paint should be used to paint home interiors, health experts and professional paint contractors agree that it cannot be done unless the safety measures outlined above are followed. 

Even if they seem serious, you can’t forget the old adage that it’s better to be safe than sorry. 

Finally, we cannot emphasize sufficiently the hazardous fumes associated with exterior paints, and we strongly advise homeowners to use extreme caution when painting their home interiors with them.

Leave a Comment