– Where to Find Parking Lot / Traffic Striping Paint
Once you have your machine assembled and ready to use you are going to need some paint. For striping parking lots, warehouses or roads we recommend using traffic paint. There are several types of traffic paint. We recommend either waterborne acrylic or solvent/oil based traffic paint. Both have their advantages and disadvantages.
Water based paints clean up very easily with water. They are easy to find and easy to thin and mix. Under normal conditions they dry very quickly. Normally in around 10 – 15 minutes. At night or on a cloudy day the dry time will increase. They are recommended over solvent based paints when spraying over sealcoat or fresh asphalt as the chemicals generally will not bleed through the paint. The only disadvantage is the dry time. It can be a little long at night or in moist conditions. Adding alcohol to the paint will shorten this time.
Oil or Solvent based traffic paint generally dries very quickly. It must be thinned either with a solvent or mineral spirits. The machine would also need to be cleaned with a solvent or mineral spirits. Getting rid of the solvent or mineral spirits after cleaning may present a problem. Unlike water, it is unlawful to just pour it onto the ground. Also, since solvent or oil based paints dry so quickly you have to constantly clean the machines spray tip so the paint does not dry on it. These types of paint are not recommended to be used on sealcoat or fresh asphalt as bleed through often occurs. In other words your white or yellow lines can turn brown.
Overall I highly recommend waterborne or water based acrylic traffic paint.
You can find traffic paint at Sherwin Williams or a Home Improvement store. However, you will pay a premium price. To get a good deal on paint go to an independent paint store and look for traffic paint. When you find it look on the bucket for the manufacturer. They are normally fairly close and will almost always sell to you directly or point you to a distributor. You can save from $5 to $10 dollars per gallon getting paint this way.
Author – Steven Cole (Economics, MBA – University of West Florida, Graduate Certificate – Stanford University)
30 years of experience in the Parking Lot Striping Business. Software developer for pricing striping jobs. Hands on experience with the Trusco Trueline Paint Striper.