What Is The Best Type of Paint To Use When Painting Your Exterior?

Dec 29, 2023

Choosing the Right Exterior Paint for Your Home

When it comes to painting the exterior of your home, the overwhelming variety of paint options can be daunting. It's crucial to choose a paint that not only enhances the aesthetic of your home but also provides long-lasting protection against the elements. In this post, we'll discuss the best types of paint for exterior use and what factors you should consider before making your selection.

Durability and Weather Resistance

Exterior paints must withstand a variety of weather conditions, from blistering heat to freezing temperatures, as well as resist moisture and fading. Acrylic latex paint is widely recognized for its durability and excellent adhesion to different surfaces. It's also flexible, allowing it to expand and contract with your siding, which minimizes cracking and peeling. For areas that experience harsh weather, high-quality acrylic latex paint is often the best choice.

exterior paint cans

Finish and Aesthetics

The finish of your exterior paint not only contributes to the look of your home but also to its maintenance and longevity. Flat or matte finishes can help hide imperfections on the surface but can be more susceptible to staining. Satin finishes offer a slight gloss, are easier to clean, and are good for high-traffic areas. Semi-gloss and gloss finishes are highly durable and easy to clean, making them ideal for trim and accents. Consider the architectural style of your home and the level of maintenance you're willing to undertake when choosing a finish.

Eco-Friendly Options

Environmental concerns are increasingly important for many homeowners. If you're looking for eco-friendly paint options, low-VOC or zero-VOC paints are available. These paints have reduced levels of volatile organic compounds, which are better for the environment and your health. They emit fewer odors and are less toxic than traditional paints, without sacrificing quality or durability.

eco-friendly paint

Oil-Based vs. Water-Based Paints

Traditionally, oil-based paints were favored for their robust finish and resistance to wear. However, they have fallen out of favor due to their high VOC content and the lengthy drying time. Water-based paints, particularly acrylic latex, have improved significantly and are now the preferred choice for exterior applications. They dry faster, are easier to clean up, and have less impact on the environment. If you're repainting over an old oil-based paint, make sure to properly prepare the surface before applying a water-based paint.

Color Retention and UV Protection

Color retention is a critical consideration for exterior paints. Your home's exterior is constantly exposed to UV rays, which can cause colors to fade over time. To ensure lasting vibrancy, select an exterior paint that offers UV protection. High-quality acrylic latex paints typically have excellent color retention and can help keep your home looking fresh for years to come.

house exterior painting

Mildew and Mold Resistance

In damp or humid climates, the exterior of your home can be prone to mildew and mold growth. Many modern exterior paints include mildewcides, which are additives that help prevent the growth of mold and mildew. These can be particularly beneficial for homes in shaded areas or those with minimal exposure to sunlight.

Brand and Quality

Not all paints are created equal, and with exterior paint, you often get what you pay for. Investing in a high-quality paint from a reputable brand can save you money and labor in the long run. These paints tend to have better coverage, requiring fewer coats, and are more durable, meaning you won't have to repaint as often. Conducting research and reading reviews can help you choose a paint that will meet your needs and provide the best value.


Choosing the best type of paint for your home's exterior is a decision that should be made with care. Consider the climate, the surface you're painting, and the level of maintenance you're comfortable with. Acrylic latex paints are generally the best option for most homes, offering durability, flexibility, and a wide range of finishes. Remember to prioritize quality and look for paints with added benefits like low VOC content, UV protection, and mildew resistance. With the right paint, your home will not only look beautiful but also be well-protected for years to come.