Rust-Oleum is a popular spray paint brand, and it offers a quick and easy way to paint a multitude of different surfaces such as wood, glass, metal, concrete, and more.
Using Rust-Oleum is really quite easy, but you do need to know the ins and outs of the spray paint to ensure you get the best results. One of the easiest ways to ruin a spray paint project is to not wait for the paint to dry before handling or touching it.
How long does it take for Rust-Oleum to dry? Generally, Rust-Oleum takes between 24-48 hours to dry, but how long it actually takes to dry does depend on various factors, such as the type of paint, the surface it is applied to, as well as the environment where it has been left to dry.
Read on to find out the more specific details on how long it takes for Rust-Oleum to dry in different scenarios, so you can plan your project perfectly!
Various Stages Of Dryness For Rust-Oleum
Spray paint goes through various stages of dryness before it is fully cured, and understanding these stages is quite important to help your project be successful.
Here is a quick summary of the various stages of dryness:
- Surface Dry – This is when the outer layer of paint is dry, but the inside is still damp. Touching the paint at the stages means that some will show on your finger.
- Touch Dry – The paint at this stage is dry enough to touch, but with enough pressure, an indent will be left in the paint and the surface will not be smooth.
- Hard Dry – The paint is almost completely dry at this stage, but applying enough pressure to the paint could leave a mark behind.
- Thorough Dry – The paint is fully dried through at this stage, and you can apply pressure to the surface without worrying about a mark being left behind.
When Does Rust-Oleum Fully Dry?
The different Rust-Oleum paints take varying amounts of time to dry, so you do need to look at the specific paint you are using to work out the drying time.
Below are the most popular Rust-Oleum paints, and how long they take to dry in the optimal environment:
Rust-Oleum Lacquer Paint
Lacquer paint dries quite quickly. It can be touch dry in only 20 minutes, and hard dry in 30 minutes. However, it still takes around 24 hours to dry through fully.
Rust-Oleum Enamel Paint
Enamel spray paint will be touch dry in between 2-4 hours, hard dry in 5 -9 hours, and completely dry after 24 hours.
Rust-Oleum Epoxy Paint
The epoxy spray paints take quite a bit longer to dry. The surface can be touched without marking in around 12-16 hours, but it will only be fully cured after 48 hours.
Does Surface Affect Drying Time?
The surface to which the Rust-Oleum is applied definitely affects the overall drying time. Smoother surfaces do dry quicker than rougher, uneven surfaces, but the material of the surface has some effect as well.
These are the various types of surfaces Rust-Oleum can be applied to, and how quickly they dry:
- Wood – Smooth wood surfaces are quick to dry, whereas uneven, rough wood surfaces take quite a bit longer.
- Metal – Metal surfaces are almost always smooth, and this allows them to dry quickly.
- Glass – Spray paint on glass will take 24 hours to dry, but the coats in between can be done more frequently than on other surfaces.
- Plastic – Spray paint on plastic dries quickly, but not as quickly as what it does on metal.
- Concrete – Spray paint on concrete does not take very long to dry, especially if it is on a smooth surface.
What Is The Best Drying Environment For Rust-Oleum?
Rust-Oleum will dry quicker and have a more even finish if it is applied and left to cure in the right environment. For Rust-Oleum, the best drying environment is between 50-90°F, where the humidity is below 70%.
If the temperature is too cool, the Rust-Oleum will take much longer to dry fully. If the temperature is too high, and if the humidity is too high, then the spray paint might not even dry fully and still be tacky.
It should also be a dust-free, calm environment that is not too windy.
Spraying Rust-Oleum Too Thick
Keep in mind that the drying times mentioned above for Rust-Oleum are true for thinner layers of paint. If you apply Rust-Oleum too thick to a surface, then it will take longer to dry, and the whole surface might not even dry at all.
It is much better to apply a thin layer, wait for it to dry, and then apply a thin layer over this until you have reached your desired coverage.
How To Tell When Rust-Oleum Is Fully Dry?
You would want to wait for the Rust-Oleum paint to dry fully before touching or using the item that you have painted.
You also do not want to be touching the paint and leaving behind marks checking whether it is fully dried or not. The best way to check if Rust-Oleum has dried fully is to wait 24 hours before checking. By this time, it should have dried fully, or enough so that touching it will not leave a mark behind.
Make sure to read the label of the spray paint you are using for recommendations on how long to wait until the Rust-Oleum has dried fully.
How To Make Rust-Oleum Dry Quicker
If you do not have too much time to wait, there are a few things you can do to try and help the Rust-Oleum dry quicker.
Paint In Thin Layers
Instead of trying to give the surface complete coverage in one go, it is best to apply thin layers and build up to your desired coverage. This might sound counterproductive, but thin layers applied after each other will dry quicker than one thick layer that might not even cure at all.
Using the Rust-Oleum outdoors is a great way to have it dry quicker. The breeze and light will help it cure faster. If you cannot paint outdoors, then you should try to paint in a well-ventilated room.
Use Drying Aids
If you have applied the Rust-Oleum on a cold day where there is high humidity, then you can use a hair dryer to quicken the drying process. Do not place the hair dryer on high heat, and hold it far enough away that it will not disrupt the paint on the surface.
If using a hair dryer makes you nervous, then you can place a fan near the painted surface, to circulate airflow and allow it to dry quicker.
Does Rust-Oleum Need Two Coats?
Rust-Oleum actually does not need two coats of paint, and one coat should be perfectly fine to give good coverage. However, the white Rust-Oleum paint is the only one that requires two coats.
Even though Rust-Oleum does not need more than one coat, you might prefer applying a thin layer, waiting for it to dry, and then a second thin layer afterward just for the most complete coverage possible.
This is fine to do, but you do need to wait the right amount of time before applying the second coat. In the right conditions, you should wait for 6 hours before applying the second coat of paint.
Once the second coat of paint has been painted, the surface should cure fully in 24 hours.
Rust-Oleum is a high-quality, reliable spray paint that comes in different forms, colors, and finishes. The type of Rust-Oleum product you use, the environment in which you are painting it, and the surface you are applying it to, will dictate how long it takes to dry.
Generally, Rust-Oleum should take between 24-48 hours to dry thoroughly. Before testing to see if the Rust-Oleum is dry, you should wait at least 6 hours, just to be sure that your fingers will not leave impression marks behind on the surface of the paint.
What happens if you paint a second coat of Rust-Oleum too soon?
Painting a second coat of Rust-Oleum too soon could cause the paint to peel or develop streaks. If it is colored paint, then the color might appear uneven too.
You might even have to scrap the project and start all over again.
How long does a Rust-Oleum clear coat take to dry?
The Rust-Oleum clear coat paint will be touch dry in 20 minutes, it will be dry enough to handle in 3 hours, and it will completely dry within 24 hours.
Does Rust-Oleum need a clear coat?
It can be beneficial to use a clear coat on top of Rust-Oleum paint, as it will give the spray paint optimal results and ensure that it is longer-lasting. However, for ordinary craft projects, a clear coat is not absolutely necessary.