Valspar from Lowes

girlndocsMarch 19, 2010

I wanted to talk about my experience with this paint because I notice most of the discussion is about higher end paints. There's no problem with that and I'm sure a lot of the higher end paints are better, but not everyone has that budget. In my case I rent, and while I'd scrimp and save to get excellent paint for my own house I'm not going to spend $60 per gallon so my landlord can have some someone come in and spray flat cream builder's special over all of it as soon as I move out.

Anyway, I'm really happy with how it performed. I used the interior satin and the interior/exterior high gloss. The satin was nearly odorless, the gloss a little more stinky but not suffocatingly so. A week after I painted my backsplash with the satin, my husband splattered some spaghetti sauce on it washing the dishes (well, that *is* why they call it a backsplash), and it wiped off beautifully with no stains or burnishing. It touched up really well in another part of the house where I had to spackle, too. Good coverage with white over avocado green (one coat of primer).

I did my cabinet doors in the gloss, and the balance between open time and cure time worked perfectly for me: it stays really, really wet for much longer than I expected but once it starts to dry it kind of locks down really fast and is hard to the touch very quickly. I have cats, which makes painting finish-sensitive projects a fraught venture: first some cat hair drifted onto a door 5 or 10 minutes after I painted it and settled down into the paint, but the paint was still so open that I was able to pick the hair out and smooth the spot over with my wet brush, and it self leveled again perfectly. I can't tell where the hair was. Then after the doors had been drying for about 10 hours my cat jumped onto one of them and left dirty footprints all over it and I freaked out. But I was able to use a slightly damp rag to wipe and buff away every bit of that dirt and the finish didn't change at all. If it's this durable in the kitchen, I'm going to be thrilled.

Every once in a while Lowes has a sale on Valspar that involves a $5 rebate. I got my paint with this rebate so I think it cost me $22 per gallon.

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glad you had a very favorable experience with the Valspar girlndocs.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2010 at 9:15AM
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I've also used Valspar along with Ace, Behr, and Benjamin Moore. I think they have improved the texture and I have no complaints. I prefer the texture of Behr and Benjamin Moore, but it is less convenient for me to get to the available stores. Lately, I've been using Ace, our local hardware store, and it has worked satisfactorily for me too. And they will match any color I want.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2010 at 4:14PM
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I too very much like Velspar paint. I've mostly used Benjamin Moore paint & painted my living room with BM last week. But yesterday I painted a bedroom with a flat Velspar paint (because Lowes is much more convenient than the BM store) & I am very happy with the Velspar. They had great color choices, the paint is very thick and non-drippy and it looks great on the wall. Plus, the price is terrific. I'll use Velspar again!


    Bookmark   March 25, 2010 at 2:34PM
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I'll probably be going with Ben Moore and Ace paints more than Valspar now because an Ace hardware opened down the street and I can usually depend more on the Ace people knowing what the heck they're talking about than I do the Lowes people.

But I like knowing that if I'm ever somewhere that Lowes is my most convenient option, Valspar is a decent paint at a reasonable price.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2010 at 4:55PM
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I've almost always purchased paint from Lowe's Home Depot or Walmart, Valspar, Ralph Lauren, Behr, Olympic, Kilz, Dutch Boy etc are the types I have purchased. Recently I went to BM and purchased a gallon of semi gloss paint it cost me $29 total. I know that the lesser sheens are even less.

So I guess all this time I've thinking that the "good" paint must cost more and that purchase disproves that myth. I inquired after the guy wrung up my paint, saying "this must be the low end paint you sell" He corrected me saying that this was their mid grade paint, only one other is above it in this particular store.

I"m happy with how it's been working so far!

The big test will be this weekend when I spray a bedroom set with it using a gun and compressor. I will add that the first gallon of paint (I posted on this) was very thick to me, like the consistancy of pudding. this new gallon I just picked up, same exact paint, I had them open up for me, it was NOT as thick!! so go figure.

moral of the story, for virtually the same price as a gallon of most of the brands I have used in the past, I got a better quality BM paint.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2010 at 6:43PM
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I don't care for Valspar because the dry shade is far, far different from what the sample shows. Used it twice in two different rooms, two different colors, will not use it again.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2010 at 2:39AM
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I've used all the above mentioned brands at one time or another, and I think that they're all decent(although I have had some problems with Dutch Boy). I do think that Ace paints are under-rated, though. Some of my best painting over the years was done with Ace brand.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2010 at 3:56PM
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I have used Valspar paints with good results. But yesterday I noticed something. The "quart" of Valspar semigloss trim paint is actually 29 oz, not 32. It says it right there on the label. Probably not a huge difference if you're painting a room, but those three ounces could be the difference between a completed piece of furniture and another can of paint.

This irks me in the world of ice cream, and it irks me in the paint aisle. The container is the same size, it just has less in it. I guess they hope we won't notice. I believe next time I'll compare price per ounce.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2010 at 10:11PM
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Just a note of clarity on the "price per Oz." thinking, relative to paint...

There's many different "Fill-levels" for various tint-bases.
* The whiter bases start out fuller because less colorant goes in.
* Deep/Neutral bases aren't as full. This allows for much more colorant to be added for deep colors.
* The "stated" size of a "Quart" or "Gallon" has nothing to do with trickery. It's exactly like buying a 2x4! The actual dimension is 1.5" x 3.5"'s just CALLED a 2x4.
* I COULD get into why the dark tint-bases WEIGH so much less...and it's not just the fill-level! AND they often cost MORE!


    Bookmark   March 31, 2010 at 12:04AM
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I've used Valspar for exterior paint and I like it alot. In my experience, it covered well and had really nice color with a lot of depth. The only thing I didn't love about it is the 1st level of gloss (satin?)is a bit glossy for my taste. I ended up using flat and it came out quite nice.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2010 at 8:56AM
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I bought some Valspar Signature line paint last night - the gal told me that I don't need primer but I am reading on this forum about "flashing" happening w/ Valspar. Does anyone have experience w/ Valspar Signature - did you prime with it even though it is "paint + primer"?


    Bookmark   June 21, 2010 at 12:03AM
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Christopher Nelson Wallcovering and Painting

even though it is "paint + primer"?

Do not believe a word of it.There is no such thing, it is just a marketing scheme.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2010 at 4:38AM
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Thanks, christophern, I guess it's back to the paint store.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2010 at 9:21AM
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I've used the Valspar Signature line for most of my painting in this house over the last 7 years and it has been great paint, covered extremely well, worn well, and no flashing. I've used Ben Moore on a couple of recent paint jobs and been very pleased with that. I also like the Ace paint in their flat Matte finish. Right now, I'm repainting my living room in that since I was so happy with the kitchen and the entry in the Ace flat matte paint. (It was called Ace Sensations but they just changed the can this year!) The only issue I've had ever, with the Valspar Signature was the smell. It's stronger than many other lines, but that can be mitigated with a Tbl. of vanilla stirred into the gallon.
I don't know about the paint/primer combos. My own experience has been to prime when I think I need to, (for example, over red walls in my kitchen and entry) and not worry about it when I don't think there will be a coverage issue. I use 2 coats of high quality paint and have had excellent results.


    Bookmark   June 22, 2010 at 12:33PM
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The only issue I've had ever, with the Valspar Signature was the smell. It's stronger than many other lines, but that can be mitigated with a Tbl. of vanilla stirred into the gallon.

I collect perfume oils from a small company in California and someone on their forum reported good results mixing in a few drops of that with paint. I tried it with the paint I used for my hallway and now the hall smells faintly of ginger and incense whenever it's warm.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2010 at 3:55PM
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Just an update on my experience with Valspar signature - I am obviously a rookie at painting so maybe this will help someone else. I thought I'd save $ for the ceiling and asked Lowes to match BM Atrium White. Bad move to do this w/o asking for a custom sample. I didn't realize BM Atrium White is PINK (until 5 people came to my house and agreed it was pink and I searched this forum and saw that comment!!) - duh. So lesson learned - the Valspar Signature was fine in terms of coverage - but don't buy 4 gallons of ANY new paint color w/o asking for a sample!! I went back and the guy @ Lowes had no idea how to fix it. He added some white to it but said it looks the same to him and probably won't change it significantly.

    Bookmark   July 4, 2010 at 11:05AM
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Lori A. Sawaya

Very good advice diynewbie!

I was waiting at the Lowe's counter last week and and woman walked up and stood beside me. She had a piece of vinyl siding in one hand and a paint chip in the other. I had seen her over at the chip rack a few minutes prior.

A staff person approached her and I heard her order up 5 gallons of exterior paint as she handed him the color chip.

She walked into the store and 'matched' a paint chip to her vinyl siding sample --- IN THE STORE. She didn't even go outside to look at it.

It's always a struggle for me in those situations. Do I butt in and say something because I know I could help and maybe save someone from making a huge mistake, or do I keep my mouth shut and mind my own business?

Course, I had to say something and try to start some dialogue. So I casually mentioned that it was brave of her to just walk up and choose a color like that. She made an effort to not make eye contact (ya know what I mean) kinda shrugged and just said 'it looks like a match to me'.

    Bookmark   July 4, 2010 at 3:49PM
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funcolors, that us too funny...too bad you weren't at my Lowes last week! As a follow-up, I painted a corner of the ceiling with the "fixed" Atrium White Valspar (with extra white) and it is still pink, alas, and not white enough. I got a sample of Valspar Fresh Cotton (learned my lesson!) - but I may look for a more buttery color to match the pale green walls I have in mind. Dare I ask Lowes to color match to BM Linen White? LOL

    Bookmark   July 6, 2010 at 1:12AM
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I've painted every room in my house with Valspar over the last 6 years. I've tried quart sizes of other paints, the new Behr with primer, and BM, but I much prefer the Valspar. Last week I painted my basement and realized they must have made a change because the paint hardly smelled and it was a pleasant smell. Also, it covers in one coat, in my experience.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2010 at 11:33AM
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Christopher Nelson Wallcovering and Painting

Dare I ask Lowes to color match to BM Linen White? LOL

You are brave enough to be at Lower's at all, asking to match colors is like asking your 5 year old to sit down and read a book, not gonna happen.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2010 at 5:08AM
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In reference to their being only 29 oz. in a quart of Valspar: In '90s, I used to have to color match customers' exterior choices BY EYE, because my company was too cheap to invest in a computer. I got very good at it, and learned the ins-and -outs of color matching. You must have been using a dark color, which requires large amounts of pigment, and the base will have little or no white pigment to start with. If you started with a full container, where would the added pigment go? Different colors require different starting points, or "bases". These bases are usually named White, Tint base, Deep Tone Tint Base, and Ultra Deep Tone Tint Base (for the absolute darkest colors). You did not get cheated; the volume, more or less, was made up with colorant to tint to your desired shade...Be aware that sometimes a particular base can run out, and a formula can be "tweaked" to use the next-closest base; I wouldn't allow that, it is best to wait until the right product is in stock.

That being said, I completely agree that you should always get a sample container to test how your color choice will appear on the wall. I had various samples made up at Lowes for our bathroom (to complement new tub surround tile) and had them mix up 2 gallons of the chosen color. I did not pay attention after I received them, and proceeded to use all 2 gallons up. Turns out I needed a third gallon for the final coat (I like to prime and follow with 2 coats). It was then that I compared the formula on the sample lid to the first two gallons, and discovered that the color I had already applied was not the same as my original sample. Because I had primed over the test swatches, I never noticed, trusting Lowes' expertise. I was not happy when I had to order that 3rd gallon in the wrong color because of how far into the project I was. While a manager gave me a discount, I should have also been refunded what I had spent on the samples, since that was a waste of time. How hard would it have been for Lowes to store customer formulas to prevent this kind of mistake? A dedicated hard drive could easily store thousands of formulas easily. I am not complaining about the performance of the Valspar, however; it is a very good coating at a good price when Lowes has a sale and/or rebate on.

Next, the complaint that the color dry differed from the color wet; who cares? You chose a color using a dry sample, so what does the wet color have to do with anything? There is always a color shift in wet versus dry wall paint; only crayons and artist's paints should stay true to the as-applied color. Now, if the dry color does not match the swatch you chose, that's a different problem; you were given the wrong color...

Finally, don't be afraid to allow one quality paint to be computer-matched to another manufacturer's dry color sample. As long as you test it first, it should be okay, although one man's semi-gloss can be another man's satin finish. For touch-ups, ALWAYS stay with the same manufacturer/base/sheen. To avoid mix-ups, tape 2 index cards with the brand, base, type of sheen (satin, egg-shell, semi-gloss, etc.), name of color and name of color chart, formula (it's on the narrow label stuck on the lid; write it down, because these labels can fade or be damaged) and an actual two-coated index card sample (called a 'brush-out') inside a cabinet or drawer, or filed in a filing cabinet, to use for later repainting and/or reformulating.

    Bookmark   May 23, 2011 at 6:23PM
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This is the worst paint that I have ever, ever used. It does not cover in one coat, one room took 5 coats. Another room took 2 coats and it is still not good and this painting over white walls. When I complained to Lowes, they said that I did not know how to paint. They also said that they have never heard of any complaints about this paint with primer that it worked great: all you had to do was paint the wall, wait for 7 days until it was truly dry and then paint it again. 7 Days - are they crazy. How many people want to wait for 7 days in-between painting their walls. As for no complaints, there are hundreds of complaints about this paint.

    Bookmark   August 15, 2011 at 4:40PM
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I've had somewhat mixed experiences with Valspar (always satin finish.) I painted the white walls in my hallway with Valspar's "Sag Harbor," which is a relatively dark grey/green shade. I got perfect coverage in 2 coats, with no primer. (In response to the post above mine... I painted my second coat within a few hours and it was fine. And, I certainly wouldn't expect to use anything less than 2 coats when painting over un-primed white walls, unless I was painting with an extremely light color. White walls don't necessarily mean fewer coats than dark walls. But, technique does play a role in all this - how you apply the paint matters when it comes to good coverage.) The Sag Harbor shade in the hall did chip once, but only because I banged the sharp corner of a piece of furniture against it when I was moving furniture from one room to another. Someone spilled a drink in the hallway, and it splashed on the walls, and I was able to wash the walls without any damage to the paint.

I used the "Ocean Dream" shade over white walls (again, with no primer) the first time I painted one of my bathrooms. This shade is a light blue with a bit of a grey tone. It is lighter than Sag Harbor. I got about the same coverage with 2 coats of this shade, but I have found it to be MUCH LESS durable than the Sag Harbor shade. It's not at all the right paint for a bathroom... merely cleaning some "toothpaste overspray" from the wall left permanently lighter areas.

I don't know if the difference has to do with the specific pigments used in the different colors, or what. I will say that I, too, am a "cheap paint" person, just because for the most part I've gotten good results with less-expensive paints. I used a Glidden satin in my kitchen (including on the backsplash) and it is highly-washable and doesn't fade, although the kitchen gets a lot of direct sun. I've also just posted my review of Behr Premium Plus Ultra.

    Bookmark   August 17, 2011 at 11:07AM
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I'm glad I came across this post. Will be painting house. Replacing some areas with cement board siding.But got paint before. Even though spraying old paint off to bare wood-70 year old farm house.making sure wood was dry. Painting at right temps. and this 60+ year old lady up on tall ladder.Paint I can pull it off. Now I was told paint must have been frooze. I used good primer . But my local true-valu says will Match Price of Menards or Lowes. And will not have to travel 60 miles Round trip. And besides they KNOW me when I come in the door.And if I had problem with their paint I would TELL them about it.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2011 at 8:23AM
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We used a Valspar paint in Summer Gray in DS's condo garage. Please note that I do not recall which line of Valspar it was. We used it because DS received a gift certificate for Lowe's. We also used the primer recommended by the paint counter customer service person. The walls were finished about six months before, I believe. Pretty much builder grade everything. The Valspar paint we used was horrible. Spattered, required three coats and still wasn't great coverage-wise. It was thin, messy, smelly, and saggy. I'm nothing like a pro painter, but I get uniformly great results with Farrow and Ball, and I have done fine with certain SW lines, although I dislike the odor. (Oh, and a pro painter who was my GC's sub and used SW exclusively put the wrong color labeled with the right name in a guest house and no one made good on it--so paint mix goofs do happen, even in the expensive stuff). I have used Frazee happily in the past, too. Perhaps because we told the paint guy it was for a condo garage, he recommended the junkiest paint. I don't know. To spend so much time and effort for such poor results . . . I won't go near Valspar again.

    Bookmark   August 27, 2011 at 11:52AM
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Ditto! Took FOUR coats for a cream color to cover white. It chips easily and doesn't wash well.

    Bookmark   September 22, 2011 at 3:48AM
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Lynne Reno

Painting a very light green over a very light beige with Valspar took 3 coats and still didn't look right. Never again.

    Bookmark   January 7, 2013 at 11:57AM
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Funny, I just called Lowes today to complain on Valspar signature eggshell paint I bought 3 days ago. Very frustrated. Three coats and still needs more! I used the same paint a year and a half ago and it went on great...same color. It is very runny and gets tacky real quick. I was happy previously but after this experience, never again. Lowes was going to have the rep call me today, but its 11:00pm. Don't think its going to happen! Hoping to get a refund tomorrow with pictures for proof of shoddy paint

    Bookmark   January 8, 2013 at 12:27AM
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Christopher Nelson Wallcovering and Painting

good luck with that

    Bookmark   January 8, 2013 at 4:47AM
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Woo hoo! Complained nicely and got a refund on the gallon of paint and a new free gallon to try! The pictures for proof helped. The valspar guy said he had never heard of that before. Apparently he hasn't read the reviews on Lowes website! Ha! Oh well, back to painting, we will see.

    Bookmark   January 8, 2013 at 6:42PM
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killinsnakes - I just had a huge problem with Lowes/Valspar - In July 2010 I purchased paint for my dr and lr - Rock Candy - went back with can/lid from July 2010 and had 3 gallons mixed - paid a painter to paint 2 story foyer and two hallways. When I got home - it's not the same color!! I asked the paint guy at Lowe's when I had it mixed if it was going to make a difference that now the paint is PRIMER AND PAINT he told me no - the formula is the formula - well he was wrong! Now I have a yellow foyer. Rocky Candy is hard to describe and now I am having a heck of a time trying to find something close to it since Lowe's cannot match it (and yes, Valspar and Lowe's refunded me for all including the painter!).

    Bookmark   January 12, 2013 at 10:39PM
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