August 29, 2023

How to Store Paint (New & Opened)

How to Store Paint (New & Opened)

Key FAQ Points:

  • Protect paint from extremes of temperature – both hot and cold
  • Avoid direct sunlight and damp conditions
  • Uninsulated places like the garage or shed are unsuitable
  • Make sure opened tins are properly resealed


Whether you’re storing a brand-new tin of paint or one that you’ve opened and used, the guidelines for good storage conditions are pretty much the same. However, opened tins require extra considerations as well.

Good conditions for paint storage

Always protect your tins from extremes of temperature and frost. Both cold and high heat can render water-based paint unusable. Store out of direct sunlight to avoid paint tins heating up and avoid damp conditions, which can cause problems by damaging tins.

It’s quite commonplace to store paint in uninsulated places like the garage or shed. Unfortunately, this isn’t a good idea when the weather conditions are going to be adverse. Imagine you had to sit in those places during the cold nights of winter or hot, stuffy summer days.

Take extra care with opened tins

Once tins of paint are open, you’ll need to take extra care to prevent evaporation. Properly resealing tins after use will avoid moisture-loss from water-based paint. The key to this is keeping the rim of your tin in a good condition. Here are some top tips to achieve this:

Open with care

If you damage the lid or rim of the tin when opening it, the chances are it will not seal well afterwards. Loosen lids in several places around the rim before levering off – ensuring you are not impacting the rim as you lever. A custom-made tin opener is a great option.

Top tip – For lids that seem very stuck, twist the tin opener (like a key action) rather than levering.

Be careful with dried paint

Don’t allow dried paint to build up around the tin edge (or lid) as this can prevent the lid from fitting tightly. To help avoid this, resist the temptation to use the rim of the tin to wipe off excess paint when dipping your brush. If you allow paint to dry around the rim, it’s tricky to remove without lots of bits falling into the paint.

Here are some ways you can protect the rim of your paint tin:

  • Use a Tin Topper – designed to clip onto Frenchic 750ml tins
  • Wrap the rim in tin foil while painting, then remove when resealing
  • Put a strong elastic band across the open tin and use this to manage the paint on your brush

Alternatively, you can pour out the paint you are going to need into a clean container or tray. Clean the rim and reseal straight away.

What if the tin is damaged?

If you’re not getting a good seal because your tin rim or lid is damaged, consider adding extra protection with a plastic bag or cling film, tightly anchored with an elastic band. This will add an additional layer of protection to minimise moisture loss.

What if there’s not much paint left?

If you don’t have a lot of paint left in the tin, you may find it keeps better if you store it in a smaller clean, airtight container rather than in its original tin. If you use a screw-top container, try your best not to get paint in the thread as it can make it tough to get the lid back off.

Above all else, don’t forget to label the new container!


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