Paints & Coatings Resource Center

Ask the Expert Question-and-Answer Archive

by Ron Joseph

August, 2008

Does dry film thickness determine the duration of paint's life?

Q: Sherwin Williams exterior paint called Duration shows a DFT of 2.8 mil while a California Paints 2010 paint scrubs shows a DFT of 2 mil.

Would one choose Sherwin williams duration over california paint based on this information? What other factors should I consider when choosing the best exterior paint for a home?

A: I suggest you go online and purchase a copy of the latest Consumer's Reports on interior/exterior house paint. The report clearly identifies the most durable paints for your purposes.

The dry film thickness statement on the label of the paint can is simply a guideline for the painter. While a thicker film is often more durable than a thinner film, there are many other chemical factors that need to be considered. However, the ingredients in each manufacturer's paint are proprietary and the public never gets to see them. Consumer Reports actually tests the paints and in my opinion provides the public with the most reliable information.


Ron Joseph

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