Proper use of your “Rattle Can” aka Aerosol Spray Paints

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Growing up in Texas everyone knew aerosol spray paints by the nickname of “Rattle Cans.”   That’s because the directions told you to shake the can up to mix the ingredients (pigments, solids, solvents) before spraying.  Inside each can is a plastic ball the helps to mix the ingredients together before spraying that makes a noise when it bounces off the inside of the can like a baby rattle, or toy.

Below are two “Tips” for extending the life of your spray paint can.

First, if you don’t shake the can well enough, the paint may come out in a stream instead of the normal aerosol spray, making it difficult or impossible to spray on your target or object.  This is especially true in cold weather.  Many roofers in the winter months keep their paint inside the truck, or put it on a warm truck hood to bring the temperature up to a normal spray range of around 70 degrees.

Here is the second “Tip” to extend the life of your spray paint can: after you’ve finished your job and still have paint in your can, turn the can upside down and spray the paint out until the spray runs clear.  This is the solvent that cleans the line and tip from paint and prevents the tip or line from clogging with dried paint.

I’ve had paint that I put on the shelf in the garage that is still reusable after 6 or 7 years.

by: Chris Cook Independent Rep for W.R. Cook & Associates, Southwest

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