How Long Does Spray Paint Take to Dry? [With 8 Examples]

The versatility of spray paint with quick dryness is winning every painter’s heart! It can be a great advantage when there’s no matter of waiting longer for the paint to dry. Well, spray paint is only the paint that can provide this kind of advantage of quick drying. But, the question can arise in your mind: how long does spray paint take to dry?

Spray paint takes almost 15-20 minutes to dry. Again, it takes around a full day to dry completely. The thinner layer of spray paint takes less time, about 10-15 minutes. The drying time also depends on various factors such as brands, paint types, surface, humidity, temperature, and many more.

This article will discuss the specific reason and information about the spray paint’s drying time. Also, the fast-drying method of spray paint will be included in this article. To know more, read this full article.

Top Brands of spray paints and average drying times: A comparison chart

Brand  Used forDrying time (touch dry)
1. Rust-Oleum 7797830 Stops Rust Spray Paint
wood, metal surface2-4 hours
2. Rust-Oleum 327918 American Accents Spray Paint
Wood, plastic, metal surface20 minutes
3. KILZ L541046 Chalk Spray Paintwood, furniture, metal, stone1hr
4. Krylon I00500A00 12-Ounce Triple Thick Clear Glaze Aerosol Spraywood plaster, bisque, metal, plastic, and paper15minutes
5. Rust-Oleum 7995830 Stone Creations SprayWood,  Ceramic, Metal, Stone30-60 minutes
6. Rust-Oleum Pure Gold 245221 Universal All Surface Spray Paintwood, plastic, metal, fiberglass, concrete, wicker, vinyl30 minutes
7. VHT SP402 Engine Metallic Burnt Copper PaintHeaders, Engine Blocks, Starters, Brackets, Water Pumps, Valve Covers, Transmissions, Differential Covers30 minutes
8. Rust-Oleum Brands 7215830 Black Stops Rust Hammered Spray Paint Pack of 6wood, metal, concrete, masonry, and more1-2 hours

How long does spray paint take to dry: A brief discussion 

As a beginner, it naturally comes to mind how long you’ve to wait for the paint to dry. Otherwise, the experts usually understand the paint dryness with the condition of the applied coat within a few hours. 

Several brands have their labels on paint bottles, where the drying time is included. You can check and follow this.

If you intend to apply another coat in between the drying time of the base coat, then it takes a few hours to dry. But, overall, the curing time of spray paint is 24hours. Also, some factors affect the drying time of spray paint.

To maximize the durability of paint, you must know the difference between drying time and curing time. It’ll also help you to understand how spray paint actually dries.

What are the Differences between dry time and cure time?

Though the dry and cure time are considered the same, these two terms are quite different.

Dry time- most of the paint dries after a few hours and it feels dry for the next step. But it’s not 100% dry at that moment. It’s just dry for recoat or proper steps. This can be defined as when the solvent evaporates from the surface and leaves the paint; it seems dry. And, this required time is called drying time

Cure time- Generally, when the paint coating reaches its full hardness and is completely 100% dry, this is called cure time. In this period, the paint’s residual solvent leaves the films and cross-links with fresh air’s oxygen to develop strength, resistance, and durability.  

Stages of spray paint dryness

Spray paint dryness can be identified with four main stages. These are-

  • Surface dry- In this stage, the solvents evaporate from the surface. The coat becomes too thick and sticky.
  • Touch dry- In this stage, light pressure on the coat can cause the paint to come out. But,  when you touch the paint, it doesn’t stick to your fingers.
  • Hard dry- During this stage, the pain is almost dry. The pressure on the paint can cause damage, but it doesn’t come off with a finger.
  • Thorough dry-  This is the final stage where paint gets dry completely. You can touch and put pressure on it.

How do some key factors speed up the drying process of spray paint?

Spray paint’s fast-drying features also depend on some factors such as paint type, brand, temperature, humidity, ventilation, surface absorbency, and many more. How the variables affect the dryness, let’s discuss the below:

1. Paint type

As a versatile paint, spray paint is found in markets with various types. They have their features, drying, and cure time. These also differ in spray paint dryness. 

Type of spray paints available and its dry time 

The type of spray paint which are being used widely is given below-

Enamel paint

Enamel paint takes only 10-13 minutes to dry. Again, it’s cure time is 24hour.  Here, the rate of solvent evaporation is so high. 

Lacquer paint

Lacquer paint takes only 3-5 minutes to dry. ISecuretime is 5 hours. This type of paint is made of thermoplastic polymer. So, it takes a few minutes to make the surface firm. 

Polyurethane paint

This type of spray paint takes only 5 minutes to dry. The cure time is almost 1 hour.

High heat paint

High heat spray paint takes almost 30 minutes to dry. The cure time of this paint is 1-2hr.

Chalkboard paint

Chalkboard paint only takes 20 minutes to dry in the touch. Again, its cure time is 24 hours.

Frosted paint

Frosted paint takes only 5-10 minutes to dry and 24 hrs to cure. You can recoat the surface at any time with these paint types.

Acrylic paint

Acrylic spray paint takes 1-2 hours to dry completely. It can cure fully in 24hours.

2. Brand

Several brands offer spray paint with fast-drying features. Like as –

  • Krylon,
  • Montana,
  • Belton,
  • Ironlak 
  • Liquitex 

Here, the fast-drying spray paint -Krylon only takes 8 minutes to dry and doesn’t have to wait for long. 

Again, some brands provide slow-drying spray paint as there’s no chance of recovering unwanted faults. 

3. Temperature

If you count the drying time, you should consider the effect of temperature. Temperature plays a role in drying faster of spray paint. Normally, the optimal temperature is between 65-85° Fahrenheit. 

Again, the highest temperature harms drying paint. If it’s colder, then it does not have such a bad effect. But, the freezing temperature can hamper the drying time of the paint.

4. Humidity

The relative humidity should be 40-50% and this range will help dry the spray paint faster. Excess humidity can damage paint as well as the timing of dryness. 

So, never paint in the humidity of more than 85%. Generally, low humidity is the advantage of drying spray paint faster.

5. Ventilation

Good ventilation is the only factor that can help you spray paint dry faster. It isn’t easy to maintain good ventilation in an indoor painting project. 

Therefore, you can open all the windows or doors of the room. Also, adding the stand fan, windows fan behind your paint can help to dry the paint fast. 

6. Layer type

How the paint layer is applied also affects the spray paint dryness time. The layer type is considered an essential factor that estimates the specific drying time. As we know, thinner layers of paint always take less time. 

So, applying a thinner layer will provide you with the benefit of fast drying. Like, thin layers are easily dry within a few hours. 

On the other hand, thicker layers of spray paint will take more time to dry. 

How Long Does Spray Paint Take to Dry on Different Surfaces?

The dryness of spray paint also depends on the surface that you’re painting. Different surfaces may vary at different times. Let’s check the difference between times when the spray paint is fully dry-

How long does spray paint take to dry on wood?

Wood is the most used surface for spray painting. Generally, wood surfaces take a few hours to dry. After 1-2 hours,  you can recoat or paint over the wood surface. The cure time for wood surfaces is almost 24 hours.

It’s tough to say how long spray paint takes to dry on wood. Because few factors directly affect the timing of dryness in this material. The main factors are included below-

  • Paint type: The most general spray paint used in wood is oil-based and latex-based! Using oil-based paint will take longer to dry than any type of paint. Again, latex-based paint typically takes almost less time and dries quickly. The water-based paint is perfect for spray paint on wood for fast drying results.
  • Wood type: Mainly, various types of wood can vary the time of spray paint dryness. For example, the best wood for spray-painted projects is plywood and varnished wood. The wood used for furniture making is also the perfect surface for spray paint. As the surface of the wood is porous, it takes a maximum of about an hour. 
  • Layer type: Using a thinner layer of latex paint on wood takes a few minutes to dry. Besides, thicker layers of any wood will dry slowly.

How long does spray paint take to dry on plastic?

It takes to spray paint dry on plastic is generally 25-30 minutes. Still, you can’t recoat over the surface if the dry touch stage isn’t completed. The cure time of paint drying on plastic takes almost a full day on 24hours. 

To measure the exact time, you may have to know about the few factors that influence the dryness of plastic. Such as-

  • Spray paint quality- As a versatile product, spray can be available in both low and high quality. At the maximum time, spray paint doesn’t want to adhere to or stick-on plastic. This will cause an incomplete dry. It’s caused only by the low-quality spray paint. Thus, a longer time is needed to complete spray paint drying.

On the other hand, high-quality spray paint takes less time as it is sturdy and superior quality. Generally, high-quality spray paint takes only 20-30 minutes to dry. 

  • Paint types: For plastic surfaces, latex-based, oil-based, or acrylic spray paints are used. But the latex-based spray paint takes less time to dry with effortless best results. It dries quicker than oil-based or acrylic paint.

How long does spray paint take to dry on metal? 

Metal is the surface with a very fast drying time and effortless result while spraying paint. 

Basically, with low humidity, heat, or proper ventilation, spray paint only takes 10-12minitues to dry on a metal surface. The brand, paint types, temperature are the general factors that can minimize or reduce the drying time. 

  • Temperature: The metal surface will also be cold at the cold temperature. As a result, the surface will take more time to absorb color, and thus it takes a longer time to dry. 

At medium or high temperatures,  the spray paint coat dries very rapidly. So on sunny days, the painted project will dry soon.

  • Ventilation: Proper ventilation can influence the time of drying positively. While painting on the metal surface, just open the door and windows. Or just take a table fan beside the paint. It helps to dry quickly within a few minutes.
  • Humidity: Works with spray paint with lower humidity turns a great result of dryness. It only takes a few minutes to dry on metal because the surface is too porous to have paint.

How long does spray paint take to dry on clothes?

To enrich the color and vibrance, spray paint on home cloth or fabric is a matter of joy. But sometimes, the wrong spot of spray paint may damage the paint on clothes. Here the drying time is important to wash off or rub off the cloth.

Mainly,  spray paint dries on clothes very fast, taking almost 1-2 hours. For better dryness, you’ve to wait for 12-14hours or a full day (the cure time of drying). Although it’s easy to say the timing of every fabric surface, some factors can affect the dry time individually. Such as-

  • Fabric type: The fabric types can vary the time. For example, a leather surface can take more time than normal fabric. So, using the primer will minimize the drying time. 
  • Paint types: Acrylic-based spray paint takes less time as it is more durable on cloth. The time of this type of paint is only one or two hours.

On the contrary, oil-based spray paint takes 24hours to dry on clothes thoroughly. You may also wait for 2 or 3days to get perfect dryness  

How long does spray paint take to dry on the car?

Spray paint- The easy technique of painting the car. The spray paint on the car takes 30-90 minutes to dry.

 But for better results, you have to wait almost 3-4 hours. 

 By the way, it doesn’t mean that rain, moisture, or washing off will not affect the paints after that dryness. You’ll have to wait at least 2-3 weeks for full dryness. Here, wrapping the paint will help you out. After that,  you can wash the car.  

How long does spray paint take to dry on paper?

Crafting or DIY projects, painting the paper is the essential part. Spraying paint on paper is the easiest solution for perfect results.

In general, spray paint dries on paper within one hour. But it can vary with the brand, paint types, layers, humidity, or ventilation. 

Like, acrylic-based spray paint dries within 8 hours, whereas oil-based paint takes one full day to dry on paper. So, it is better to select a brand of spray paint specially made for the paper to use. It’ll quickly dry on the paper surface with your desired time.

How long does spray paint take to dry outside?

 Spray paint takes 10-12 minutes to dry on the outside. You can paint outside but ignore the direct sunlight to dry the object. It will hamper the paint, causing peels because of quick drying.

The temperature is the main factor when drying the spray paint object outside. Between 65-85 F,  the spray paint will dry within 30 minutes. Again, if you want to recoat in that temperature, it will take 4-5 minutes to dry between two coats. 

How To Make Spray Paint Dry Faster?

Several factors influence the time of spray paint drying. So, it is easy to find out the tips for spray paint drying fast. How is it? Just take a look in the below-

1. Apply a thinner coat

A rule of thumb on painting is ” The thinner the coat, the quickest it dries”.

The basic formula of making spray paint faster is to apply the coat as much thinner as possible. As a result, it will take a few minutes to dry completely than a thicker layer.

Although, it’s tough to apply a thin coat while using spray paint because spray paint requires a few coats for better results. 

2. Lower the humidity

The humidity levels between 50-70% are the optimum range for better spray paint drying. While using spray paint, high humidity can damage your paint.  

For lower humidity or to get rid of extra moisture, you’ve to follow some tricks. Such as-

  • Use a dehumidifier
  • Use a modern air cooler where A/C units help you get out the extra moisture in the air.
  • Using
  • Using a heater will lower the humidity.

3. Use an oven to cure

There is no other easiest way to dry faster the spray paint using an oven for a cure.

Usually, toaster ovens are used for this formula because a regular oven can be hampered by the toxic chemical of spray paint, which can affect the food. 

When the spray paint is already in touch dry, then bake it at 250F in the toaster oven. It’ll cure the paint as quickly as possible

4. Heat gun

heat gun to fasten spray paint drying

Using a heat gun can reduce the timing of spray paint drying. But safety precautions should be followed! 

First, use the heat gun at a low setting. A high setting will remove the paint. Then, maintain a 1″ distance from the surface while using a heat gun.

5. Hairdryer

Instead of a heat gun, you can use a hairdryer. Just ensure the distance between the hairdryer and surface should be 2-4″! The hairdryer is the fastest method to dry the paint on any surface quickly.

6. Proper ventilation 

The ease of airflow will make the spray paint dry faster. For proper ventilation,  opening the door or windows will help you out. The sunlight can help most in the case of drying paint. If there is no chance of airflow, then use a table fan, ceiling fan, or box fan. 

Does Spray Paint Need to Dry Completely Before Adding Another Coat?

Spray paint doesn’t need to dry before adding another coat entirely. There’s a stage of touch dry which will indicate you can step ahead for applying the next coat. It takes 5-10 minutes to dry the spray paint to recoat. 

If you can’t apply the coat in this time range, then no worries! Wait 48 hours to apply another coat. Don’t be in a hurry to apply another coat. It will be the cause of peels, wrinkles, or incomplete 

 Final words

As a versatile product, spray paint is available in various types with different drying times. Including brands or paint time, many factors have influenced the timing of spray paint dryness, such as humidity, temperature, ventilation, layer time, and so on.

To get the fastest spray paint dryness, first, the best brand of spray paint can. Again, try our tips and tricks for fastening your spray paint object.