How Long To Wait Between Coats of Spray Paint?

Randy Charles
Professional Painter

Randy Charles is the owner of, a website dedicated to providing information, tips, tricks, and news about all things paint. With over 10 years...Read more

Generally, you should allow the first coat to dry completely before applying a second coat. It probably takes about 20 minutes. If you are applying more than two coats, wait an hour before applying a third coat or any additional coats.

The time it takes between coats of spray paint varies depending on the weather, humidity, and the type of paint you use. Also, most paint manufacturers recommend waiting at least 15 minutes between coats. For the best results, wait for the first coat to dry completely.

When your spray paint is completely dry, it will not feel sticky or tacky. You can check this by lightly pressing your finger on the area you coated with spray paint and then lifting your finger to see if any paint sticks to your finger. If the paint doesnt stick, its ready for another coat.

How Long To Wait Between Coats Of Spray Paint?

The answer depends on many things. The first thing to remember is how you apply your spray paint. Using long even strokes and holding the can about a foot from your project will reduce the time you need between coats.

You also need to consider what kind of spray paint you use. Different brands and types will have different drying times, so check the directions before you start painting. You could also check out their websites for tips and tricks on getting the best results with the products factor in humidity.

The higher the exposure to humid conditions, the longer it will take for your paint to dry. Low humidity generally reduces drying time, while high humidity increases it. But again, this varies depending on what specific brand and type of paint youre using.

You may want to use a dehumidifier if you paint in a humid environment (like a bathroom) to avoid any issues with slow-drying paint that could damage your project or the surrounding area.

Some other factors that can affect the time you need between coats include:

The Type Of Paint You Are Using

If you are using acrylic paints or latex paints, they will dry faster than oil-based paints. Also, if the weather is hot/humid, it will affect how fast the paint dries.

How Much Paint Is On The Surface

If you have too much paint on the surface, it will take longer to dry up than if there were only a little bit of it. For example, if there were one coat on a wall with five coats underneath, it would take longer than if there were two coats on top and three coats underneath.

If two coats were on top and four coats underneath it, it would still take longer because each coat takes time to dry completely before another can be added.

Dry Time

Depending on the type of paint, drying time can vary. The best way to know how long to wait between coats is to read the manufacturers instructions on the spray paint can. Youll likely need to wait anywhere from 45 minutes to 6 hours before applying the next coat.


Proper ventilation is important for spray painting. The purpose of ventilation is to remove flammable vapors from an area, which applies when youre spray painting.

Spray painting in an open and ventilated area will help minimize fumes, so your paint should also dry faster. If you are spray painting inside, make sure you have a window open and a fan blowing towards it to carry fumes outside rather than throughout your home or garage.


Temperature is another factor that affects the life of your paint job. Temperature affects paint in two major ways: the temperature at which its applied and the temperature at which it hardens.

For example, applying paint in hot weather causes it to dry too quickly, resulting in a rough finish with reduced color retention.

It can also cause premature paint film cracking due to rapid moisture loss from the surface. Cold weather also causes problems, as it takes longer for the paint to dry and cure properly.


Humidity is another factor that can drastically slow how long coats of spray paint dry. In high humidity conditions, water molecules in the air prevent paint from drying quickly. If you paint outside, try to find a shady area with low humidity for the best results.

Avoid nights with any chance of dew or frost forming when applying spray paint outdoors. You can also speed up your paint jobs by spray paint designed to dry quickly and adhere to multiple surfaces.

What Happens If You Paint Second Coat Too Soon?

If you paint the second coat too soon, the paint will stick to itself and create a mess when it dries. It can cause unsightly marks and stains and may also prevent primer or other coats from being applied in the future. The easiest way to get rid of this is to wait at least two hours between coats (though there are exceptions).

Why Should You Wait Between Coats of Paint?

While every product differs, most manufacturers recommend waiting at least two hours before painting a second coat. As with any recommendation, though, there is always an exception. But why do you have to wait at least two hours?

Coats Of Paint

When painting a surface, the layer of paint needs time to dry before applying another one on top. If the surface hasnt dried completely, the layer of wet paint will stick to itself and fold over when you try to apply the second layer. Therefore, you should always wait for the first coat to dry before applying the second one.

Tips For Painting A Second Coat

Here are a few tips for painting the second coat of paint

  1. Paint two coats over the first coat instead of one. It ensures that you have an even layer of paint on the wall and dont have to smooth the surface with sandpaper.
  2. Start by painting a small section so that you can get an idea of how much paint will be needed to cover the entire wall.
  3. Always paint over drywall with a roller, not with a brush. Drywall is much harder than plaster and tends to absorb paint more than plaster. If you try to paint plaster with a brush or roller, youll waste too much paint, and your results will look uneven and messy.
  4. Make sure the first coat is completely dry before applying a second one. The best way to ensure that the first coat is completely dry is to wait 24 hours before applying the second coat.
  5. You will also want to make sure that the surface is dust-free. You can run a damp cloth over it. Also, you can use a vacuum cleaner with a brush attachment to remove any dust or particles that might have settled there.
  6. If you work in a high-humid environment, you might consider using a dehumidifier.
  7. Finally, ensure that you have enough of the same paint for re-coating. Double-check that the paint was mixed properly before applying another coat if your first layer has dried into a different color than what you started with.


If you want to know How Long Between Coats Of Spray Paint is? Then you are just in the right place. We have the information you need to paint your room correctly to get the desired result.

Unfortunately, most painters make the mistake of not getting the time between coats of paint, which affects the productivity of their work. So, the information here will help you do the right thing.

Randy CharlesProfessional Painter

Randy Charles is the owner of, a website dedicated to providing information, tips, tricks, and news about all things paint. With over 10 years of experience in the painting industry, Randy has become an expert in the field and is passionate about helping others learn more about painting. He has written numerous articles on the subject and is committed to providing accurate and up-to-date information to his readers.

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