No Oil Based Paint available in CA. Help

guysmomOctober 15, 2011

We have read with interest the posts regarding using exterior house paint sans pigment to refinish exterior doors. We do not have oil based paints available in Calif. We have tried using Benjamin Moore acrylic but it does not dry clear. Can you suggest a brand of acrylic exterior paint that does dry clear? Thanks for your help.


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I'm in CA and I use a number of "oil-based" products. Most of the restrictions are determined by counties. You just may have to drive to an area where the restrictions aren't as stringent. For instance, I used to be in Sonoma County and certain products were not sold there. If I drove to Healdsburg, I could buy just about anything I needed. Where are you located? I may be able to direct you.

    Bookmark   October 15, 2011 at 8:34PM
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Hi Richard, I live in Salinas. I checked with a local paint store and that was the story I was given. I also checked with Lowe's in Gilroy(Santa Clara County) and they told me the same thing. I am closest to San Benito County and Santa Cruz County. Salinas is in Monterey County. Any help would be appreciated.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2011 at 11:32AM
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Hi Tina,

Two things:

First - start looking in professional paint stores. These are stores where painters, finishers and contractors buy their paint and finishes. They're also retail, but they do cater to the pros.

Second - Check Monterey County for pro stores, they still may not have what you're looking for, but they'll likely be able to tell you where you CAN get it. I think San Benito is more likely to have easier regulations than Santa Cruz, but I may be wrong.


P.S. I obviously found it.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2011 at 12:11PM
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With increased phosphate bans near me I just have to drive further to find TSP.

    Bookmark   October 17, 2011 at 3:13PM
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It is not the entire state of CA. It varies by region. Different regional regulatory agencies (with different boundaries) for air, water, and toxic substances all set laws limiting various chemicals in paint. So much regulation gets confusing (and hard to enforce) but most of the big guys err on the side of caution and just tell people it is banned in the state.

Contractor pro stores are the only ones who take the time to actually figure it out.

    Bookmark   October 17, 2011 at 4:17PM
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