How long does primer take to dry on wood?

How long does primer take to dry on wood

If you ask me how long do I usually wait after applying a coat of primer to let it be cured. I would say, there is no one-sentence answer to this question. Anyways, here is the article in which I explained how do I apply primer on a block of wood.

Because drying time depends heavily on external factors. Which include temperature, humidity, wood properties, number of layers, and primer type, etc.

This article outlines the time it takes for the primers to dry, outlines the different times for each base, and goes into a little more detail with the steps that accompany it.

If you want to know everything about primers, here is a good article that I would recommend.

This is how long a primer takes to dry when applied to wood.

Usually, a coat of primer should be given 24 hours to dry. Rest depends on what type of primer was used, its thickness, and the weather conditions where it was applied.

Primer drying time on wood can be affected by many factors. If the primer is too thin, it may not have adequate time to dry. 

If a primer is applied in a cold environment, it will take longer to dry. Temperature and humidity both affect the drying time of primer on wood because they slow down evaporation. The amount of primer applied also affects the drying time, as more primer will take longer to dry than less.

However, you should know that various primers have different drying times. For example, water-based paints tend to take more time than latex-based primers. You can read here the difference between latex and oil-based primers.

Factors that affect primer drying time.

Below are some factors that can alter the drying time process for primer. We’ll explore each of the factors in more detail in this blog post.

  • Types of primers:
  • Temperature affects:
  • Humidity:
  • The wood properties:
  • The number of coats:
  • Ventilation

Types of primers and their drying times.

Below are some popular types of primers, I’ve used them several times in my wood painting projects. Based on what I’ve experienced with regards to their drying time, let’s get into that. 

In case of a detailed debate about the types of primers. The following article is worth reading.

Oil Based Primers

Oil-based primers are the best suited to wood surfaces and are often known as wood primers. 

It is mostly used as a primer for wood projects.

At standard temperatures and conditions, this primer takes a maximum of 24 hours to cure. What affects the most there is the thickness of the coat, with that said, the thinner the coat is, the less time it will take to be dried. 

There are now oil-based primers that offer a fast-drying time.  

Kilz Original dries in only an hour, making it one of the fastest-drying primers available.

When using Benjamin Moore, a popular oil-based primer, it would take around 24 hours for it to cure. 

For more information, you can read their description.

Bonding Primers

The typical drying time for bonding primers is one to 24 hours, just like the other types of primers. The prevailing conditions, including temperature and humidity, can alter the time.

Such as, in cold weather it takes a longer time to be cured and in hot conditions, it becomes lower.

These primers are well-suited for surfaces that easily get stripped of paint. Like a hard PVC plastic or something made out of concrete where the top coat of paint does not make a good bond. Primers like these perform exceptionally well on such surfaces.

Drywall Primers

Usually, drywall primers take around 3-4 hours to completely be cured. However, there are nowadays drywall primers available that offer faster drying time, taking only 30 hours to dry. If the other factors do not interfere in the process.

Water or latex-based primers

Latex primers are a type of primer that is usually used as the first step of applying paint.

This type of primer is usually composed of a resin and about 25% water, as well as other ingredients, depending on the producer. In comparison to other types of primers, latex primers dry much faster– just 2 hours minutes on average.

Temperature effects on drying time.

Temperature affects the most drying time while painting as well as priming. In hot weather, it takes less time to dry a primer, and in cold weather, it takes longer.

In that regard, if you prime on a block of wood in cold weather, in Celcius 0-10 degrees. The primers will likely take double-or-triple the time than it would take normally.

To speed up the job done, you should primer in hot weather, something in between 20-30 degrees, which is ideal for all types of primers to get dry on time they are supposed to.

What are some factors that can alter the drying time for a primer?

Humidity effects on drying time of primer.

Humidity is the term used to define how moist an environment is. Usually, it specifies the amount of water in the air.

In rainy environments and in cold weather as well. The number of water increases in air, which is why primers take a longer time in drying. Because the water in the environment keeps the piece of wood wet, which causes an increment in the drying process.

Drying time can have effects related to the wood properties:

The type of wood can also alter the drying time. For example, if you are priming on a softwood like a pinewood, for example, the primer’s coat will get soaked up readily because of the open pores on the surface and are less dense. 

On the other hand, when it comes to priming on hardwoods such as oak, walnut, maple, or acacia, the primer’s coat may not get aboard into the grains as early as softwoods. Because of no open pores on the surface and denser properties.

The number of coats applied can also affect the drying time process.

It’s no mind to think that the more coats mean the longer time it will take a primer to get dry. As well, the thickness of the applied coats can also have effects. Such that, if you apply thin coats then it is likely it will get dry soon, while thicker coats will take more drying time.

Ventilation is also important in the drying process.

Ventilation is the primary thing to consider when getting into a priming job. It can also take part in the drying process, such that if you are working in an enclosed area where the air is not well ventilated across the area. You can expect your primer to take more time. 

Always work outside, after ensuring the weather is not rainy and there is not too much humidity. Then, this is a good option to prime and place the place in the sunlight for some time to get dry.

How Can You Make Primer Dry Faster?

There are some ways to note if you want your priming job to get done in a short time. 

These are the methods you can go after to shorten the amount of time of your priming task.

  • When you have finished painting, use a dehumidifier to eliminate the moisture in the room. Low humidity speeds up the curing process.

  • Allow air to flow freely and sufficiently into the room or painting area by opening the windows. Or better work somewhere outside if you think there is not enough ventilation in your workplace.

  • Rather than painting a thick coat, use a thin one. Consider using a paint sprayer in order to achieve this thin coat.

  • If you’re priming in cold weather, heat up your place first using heaters to increase the temperature a bit so the applied coats can get sufficient warmth. 

What happens if you paint over primer too soon?

When you apply a second coat of primer or paint just after the applied coat of primer. Then there is a possibility the topcoat will not adhere to the surface as it should, it would not make a strong bond and will likely peel off of the surface. 

Therefore, to get the best results, you should wait for the recommended time for the product you’re using. And make sure before applying either a second coat, sanding, or a topcoat that the painted primer is dried to the touch.

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