Go back

How to store leftover paint

By Flow Wall
October 9, 2014

Contrary to popular belief, the best place to store your leftover paint isn't your garage; it's your laundry room. Relocating your paint cans will not only greatly assist your garage organization, but it will also make touch-ups a breeze the next time you need to pull out your paintbrush.

Move your paint inside

In order to stay rust and clump free, paint needs to be left in a temperature-controlled area, ultimately making a laundry or utility room your best bet. Excessively high or low temperatures will make paint dry out or separate, and any areas that are occasionally subject to humidity can cause the cans to rust, blemishing your pristine eggshell white. Utility rooms keep paint out of direct sunlight, just as garages do, and you can use wall storage systems to provide a separate storage area if you want to keep laundry independent from the rest of the room.

Storage starts with the first use

After setting aside laundry room storage for all of your leftover paint, it's important to properly prep the cans. What renders extra paint useless is exposure to air; the more you do to keep cans airtight, the longer paint will last. The protecting process begins immediately with the can's first usage. Be extra careful not to wipe your brush on the lip of the can while painting, and remove any excess out of the sealing rim before closing the can. Placing a piece of plastic wrap underneath the lid and storing the can upside down will help you create an airtight seal that discourages a gross film from forming while the paint is in storage.

Make the next time hassle-free

Write down the color name and room the paint was used in on the lid can to make your paint storage system work even harder for you. You can even add a dab of paint and the original formula to the lid for good measure, just in case you should need to purchase more in the future. Consolidating this paint into mason or canning jars and applying the same labeling principles will not only cut down on how much space your paint takes up in your laundry room, but it will also assist you in your quest to keep air and rust out of your paint.

While your garage is a fantastic place to store a great many things, it might be worth your while to move your painting supplies indoors. Your walls will thank you.