Coats of Paint

One common question that homeowners ask painting contractors is the number of coats required for a paint job during any renovation. The rule of thumb is to apply at least two coats of paint for smoothness and color depth. 

However, there are a number of other factors that influence the number of coats of paint over any wall. Firstly, the type and brand of paint, the primer, the surface texture, and the color. Even though a double coat has higher labor costs, but the paint lasts at least three times longer than a single paint coat. 

There is an expensive, high-quality paint available at high-end brands that only require a single paint coat after primer application. But, this is also subjective. To help you understand this better, we have categorized the number of paint coats according to the different scenarios. Let’s get started. 

How many coats of paint are required on a basic wall? 

After construction, on a newly constructed wall, you must apply at least two coats of paint after the application of the primer. This is the standard protocol that contractors follow for all drywall in the house. 

However, if you are repainting an old wall that already has a layer of paint of the same color, a single paint coat would be sufficient given that you use a high-quality paint brand. 


When you apply the first coat of paint, you need to give it time to properly dry before applying the second coat. It is kind of like applying nail acrylics. 

So, during the waiting period, do not leave the painting tools and equipment uncovered. Properly cover them to avoid drying of paint otherwise, you will need to clean the tools before applying the second coat. 

How many coats of paint are required on the ceiling? 

Professionals advise homeowners to use the best quality paint on the ceiling. This will save you tons of hassle later on. While browsing for paint colors and types, do not compromise the quality of paint for the ceiling. 

But, here is the good news, on the ceiling you only require a single coat of paint. Applying a double coat is of no use. Simply prep the wall with a primer and apply the first paint coat and voila! You are done. 

Repainting the same color

Here is the rub with repainting the same color. If you are completely sure that the new color you are applying is exactly the same as the old one, then you only need one paint coat. 

But, many homeowners do go for a second paint coat if they feel that the first one would rust away soon. Or if the color itself is white or a lighter shade that has a chance of becoming yellow, pale, or stale over time, then going with two coats instead of one is a smart choice. 

Painting a dark color over a light one or vice-versa

Now, let’s talk about if you are applying a new color over the old one. This can either be you going from light to dark or vice versa. Here is how you can go about it

On any wall, take a corner and do a sample spot test. Test with one coat, and then apply the second coat. If you are covering a light wall with a darker color, you will need two coats. On the sample spot, go as much as three coats if need be until you are satisfied with the shade you get. 

Moreover, keep in mind that there are special circumstances where you need multiple paint coats especially if you feel that the old color would hinder the new coat, then there is no option but to go for multiple coats of the new color.

0 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *