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Interior vs. Exterior Paint: Everything You Need to Know

While the paint is sold for different uses, it is commonly manufactured for only one purpose. Paint for outdoor use is formulated to handle mildew and resist fading. On the other hand, paint for indoor use is designed to withstand cleaning and resist staining. 

Understanding the differences between these two types of paint, may help to gain a basic knowledge of chemistry.

Basic Paint Ingredients

Paint that is designed for exterior use contains additives that help it fade- and mildew-resistant. In most cases, these additives cannot stand up to the cleaning products and high heat that comes with indoor usage.

Interior paint is formulated to be easier to clean, and often contains dyes that make it less susceptible to staining. Because interior paint does not have to last for nearly as long as exterior paint does, it often uses less-expensive ingredients.

Although both types of paint may create the same final appearance, the additional ingredients in exterior paint make the paint more durable.

Interior vs. Exterior Paint

If you are in the market for painting your house, you might be wondering if the types of paint available are the same for the inside of your home as for the outside.

First of all, it’s important to understand the differences between interior and exterior paint. Both types of paint are similar in that they both resist weathering and protect your home from the elements.

If you are painting the inside of your home, you should ensure that your paint is specifically made for interior use. Certain chemicals, such as mold inhibitors, are added to exterior paint to make it last longer, but they can damage the paint in your home.

Paint that is meant to be used indoors can be used outside as long as the interior paint is of the same type. Using exterior paint on the inside of your home may cause it to fade more quickly than usual, and could cause damage to the paint that may be permanent.

Characteristics of Interior Paint

Interior paint is made with less expensive ingredients than exterior paint. It is formulated to withstand cleaning but is not as durable as exterior paint.

Interior Paint Uses

Interior paint is used in homes and offices. It is often used in kitchens, bathrooms, and other areas where it will be susceptible to high heat or humidity.

Interior Paint Benefits

Interior paint is often easier to clean than exterior paint. It may be more resistant to staining and is used in areas where it is hard to clean other surfaces.

Characteristics of Exterior Paint

Exterior paint is designed to resist fading and mildew. It is often more expensive than interior paint but will last longer.

Exterior Paint Uses

Exterior paint is used on homes, siding, and other structures that are exposed to the elements. It is commonly applied to the outside of buildings and automobiles.

Exterior Paint Benefits

Exterior paint is more durable than the paint used indoors. It protects the structure from rust, mildew, and other outdoor elements.


Exterior vs. interior paint is formulated differently because of the different environments in which they are used. If you are painting the outside of your home, there is no need to use interior paint because it will not be exposed to the same environment.

If you are looking for a house painter in Davis, CA to help you decorate your home, Alan’s House Painting can help you out. Whether for interior or exterior painting, we have it for you. Get in touch with us today to learn more.

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