What Is Elastomeric Paint And Why It’s Bad For Arizona Homes

Don’t Let Anyone Paint Your Prescott Arizona Home With Elastomeric Paint
Elastomeric paint can look like this after a while in Arizona

Elastomeric paint barely stands a chance in our Arizona sun. It’ll blister, peel, and crack much more quickly than any homeowner would like. 

Find out more (including the best paint for Arizona stucco exteriors) in the post below-

What Happened Here?!

“How is our exterior paint already looking this bad?”

Stephanie frowns at the peeling, cracking, and bubbling paint on her home. David walks around to join her. “Oh, man that’s bad! It shouldn’t look like this for another few years.”

Elastomeric paint can bubble up like this

Stephanie crosses her arms. “We need to find out why this happened. Also, we’re going to need to hire someone else to fix this problem. Who knows how much exterior painting will cost this time?

David pulls out his phone to search for answers. After a while he finds something. “So, a lot of people in Prescott with stucco homes have the same issue. Apparently it’s because painters are using elastomeric paint, and not properly for our climate.”

He hands Stephanie the phone so she can read it too-

What Is Elastomeric Paint?

Elastomeric paint is basically liquid rubber. Elastomeric was designed to be flexible for about five years, under very good climate conditions. These conditions involve high humidity and gray skies.

“And Arizona isn’t the place for that,” Stephanie points out.

Why Elastomeric Is Bad For Arizona Homes

Ultraviolet (UV) rays destroy elastomeric coating because it’s basically liquid rubber. Liquid rubber oxidizes under UV rays which makes it brittle. The rubber loses its flexibility and the paint becomes flat. When the paint becomes flat the water penetrates the surface and builds up little balloons.

Over time, the water balloons get bigger and cause bubbling and cracking. Once they burst, it causes the paint to shatter from the inside out. If left alone it can cause enough water damage to demand a complete re-stucco.

“If this happens, then why do, or did, painters use it at all? Seems like they should’ve used the best paint for home exteriors,” David asks.

There was a period of time where builders specified elastomeric coating on homes here in Arizona. Specifically, Santa Fe style homes. 

Proper painting with this involves a full coat of primer and two coats of elastomeric paint. This should extend the life of the stucco. Unfortunately, no primer and only 2 thin coats of paint were used on almost every job.

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“Well, now we know to ask what kind of paint our next painting contractor will be using! If it’s elastomeric it’s a no-go,” Stephanie says. “Maybe we should do some more research while we’re here,” David suggests.