Why Is My Paint Bubbling and What Can I Do About It?

If you’ve recently noticed blisters or paint bubbling on the wall, you’re not alone. Unfortunately, it is a common problem that many homeowners face. In most cases, the bubbling paint is simply an aesthetic issue and doesn’t pose any real danger to your home. However, addressing the problem as soon as possible is essential to prevent further damage. Paint Blistering

In this article, we will discuss the causes of paint bubbling and offer some solutions for how to fix it!

What Causes paint to bubble?

  1. Trapped Moisture Underneath the Paint 

One of the most common issues with painted surfaces is the formation of bubbles or blisters on the paint. It is often caused by trapped moisture underneath the paint layer. 

Moisture can become trapped during the painting process if there is high humidity, improper surface preparation, or the substrate is not allowed to dry before the paint is applied adequately. 

Once trapped, this moisture will try to escape and push against the paint layer, causing it to bubble or blister. In extreme cases, the paint may even peel off entirely. 

  1. Poor Quality Paint

Poor-quality paint often contains fillers and low-grade resins, resulting in a lack of adhesion to the painted surface. It can lead to bubbling, as the paint cannot adhere properly and form a solid layer. 

These fillers may also cause an uneven distribution of solids within the paint, leading to bubbling as the solids rise to the surface. 

  1. Excessive Heat 

Excessive heat can cause bubble paint because it causes the molecules in the paint to expand, creating tiny pockets of air. It is especially likely to happen if you have not mixed the paint properly before applying it in thick layers. 

Using a roller or brush to apply the paint can also introduce air bubbles. 

  1. Using Paint on Incompatible Surfaces 

Using paint on incompatible surfaces can cause bubbles because the surface may not allow proper adhesion. Common incompatible surfaces include:

  • New construction drywall that has not been dusted off
  • Surfaces that have not been cleaned thoroughly
  • Walls that have had a bed with no headboard
  • Door jambs that have not been cleaned

This can also occur when a water-based latex paint is applied over an alkyd type paint without priming. When this happens, the paint film will not bond properly with the surface and instead form bumps or blisters. These bubbles can range in size and can even lead to peeling or flaking of the paint. 

It is always best to prime an alkyd surface with an alkyd primer prior to applying a latex paint.

  1. Improper Thinning or Dilution of Paint 

When painting a surface, it is essential to use the appropriate thickness or dilution of paint. Using too thin or diluted a mixture can result in bubble paints. The added liquid weakens the binding agents in the paint, causing air bubbles to form and become trapped under the paint’s surface as it dries. 

Using too thin or diluted paint can also result in poor coverage and an uneven finish. Therefore, it is essential to follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for dilution and always properly mix your paint before use. 

How to get rid of air bubbles on painted walls

Paint bubbling on walls is frustrating to see on freshly painted walls. Fortunately, you can fix this problem. Here are a few steps that you can follow:

  • Remove the damaged paint

Using a sharp putty knife, carefully scrape away the bubbled paint to create a smooth surface.

  • Prepare the Surface

After removing the damaged paint, you will need to lightly sand the area and clean it with a damp cloth.

  • Prime the Surface

Apply a high-quality primer to ensure the paint adheres properly to the surface. Any tme you can apply the primer with a brush or roller, it will adhere to the surface better than if the primer was sprayed.

  • Repaint the affected area

Once the primer has dried, carefully apply a thin layer of paint and allow it to dry completely before adding any additional coats. 

Prevent Paint Bubbles

  • Properly prepare the Surface

One of the most common causes of paint bubbles is moisture trapped beneath the paint layer. To prevent this, properly prepare the surface before painting by cleaning it thoroughly and making necessary repairs. It includes filling in cracks and holes and applying a primer or sealant to seal any porous areas.

Additionally, be mindful of the weather during the painting process. Avoid painting in extreme temperatures or humidity, and ensure the surface has sufficient time to dry before adding additional coats of paint.

  • Use the right tools and materials

The right tools and materials contribute to the paint job’s smooth finish and prevent bubbling. Avoid using low-quality or cheap paint, as this can result in bubbling. Instead, high-quality paint and a roller with a thick nap will help ensure an even application of the paint. 

  • Use multiple thin coats

Applying a thick coat of paint can trap air underneath the paint, causing bubbling. However, using multiple thin coats allows the previous layer to dry and any trapped air to escape before adding the next layer. This technique can also help to even out the appearance of the paint’s finish.  

First, use multiple thin coats to ensure your surface is properly prepared and primed. Then, apply a thin layer of paint using long, even strokes and allow it to dry completely before adding additional coats. 

It may take more time to complete your project using multiple thin coats, but it can result in a smoother finish and prevent unsightly bubbling.

  • Allow proper drying time

When it comes to painting projects, proper drying time is crucial in preventing paint from bubbling on the wall because bubbles form when there are still traces of moisture trapped underneath the top layer of paint. 

If the previous layer is not fully dry before adding another coat, the added moisture can cause air pockets to form and create a bubbled effect on the surface. Additionally, using too much paint at once can also trap moisture and lead to bubbling. 

So, it is essential to follow the recommended drying time for each layer of paint as indicated on the product label. Additionally, be sure to apply thin layers of paint rather than trying to cover it in one thick coat.

For all painting projects, a smooth finish is always the primary goal. That is why you need to know enough painting knowledge to ensure you get the desired outcome and prevent paint from bubbling on the wall. If you do not feel confident with painting your walls, contact El Gato Painting Services.

So, if you want a well-painted room, turn to the El Gato Painting Services experts for all your painting needs. With years of experience in the industry, we can transform any space with precision and attention to detail. Our team is dedicated to providing excellent customer service and high-quality results. 

Don’t wait any longer – contact us today to bring new life to your space.

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