If a paint job is in your future, this weekend is a good time to buy the paint. Many manufacturers put paint on sale during holiday weekends in the spring and summer. Sherwin-Williams stores have discounted their paint 30 percent through Monday. Home Depot has one-gallon cans of Behr paint $5 off or $20 off 5-gallon pails (with mail-in rebates). I single out Behr because its Premium Plus Enamel interior paint is top-rated by Consumer Reports and it’s comparatively cheap ($22 to $25 per gallon before the rebate).
A good paint can add another three to six years between jobs, according to Consumer Reports. Its top-rated exterior paints cost $20 to $40 per gallon. In the June 2009 issue, the top picks after nine years of testing are M.A.B. Seashore Satin ($40/gal.), Kilz Casual Colors (Wal-Mart, $20 to $23), Valspar Ultra Premium Duramax Satin (Lowe’s, $33), California 2010 flat ($38). The top exterior picks after six years of testing are California Fresh Coat Velvet Flat ($34), Behr Premium Plus Flat or Semigloss and Behr ($20 to $35) and Ace Hardware Royal Shield ($22 to $25).
For interior paints, Consumer Reports liked the following flats in its March 2009 issue:
Behr Premium Plus Enamel (Home Depot, $22), Valspar Signature Colors (Lowe’s, $27) and Olympic Premium (Lowe’s, $17).
Eggshell/satin: Behr Premium Plus Satin (Home Depot, $24), Benjamin Moore Regal ($45) and Kilz
Casual Colors Satin (Wal-Mart, $23). Semigloss: Benjamin Moore Regal ($45), Sears Best Easy Living Ultra ($25)Behr Premium Plus Enamel (Home
Depot, $25) and Kilz Casual Colors (Wal-Mart).
Expensive paint might be overkill in the garage, basement or doghouse. If you’re on a budget, you may have relegated yourself to the shelves of mistints and recycled paints.
Paint Liquidators (3869 Minnehaha Av. S., Minneapolis, 612-310-1302) sells Behr, Sherwin-Williams, Glidden,
Ralph Lauren, Benjamin Moore, DeVine and others for $4 to $8 per gallon and $1.50 to $2 per quart. A small selection of low or no-V.O.C. paint
is for sale, too. Five-gallon buckets of paint are available for $20 to $30. Ten colors of recycled paint from Fridley-based Amazon Environmental paint are always
in stock for $40 to $45 per 5-gallon bucket. For most colors, only a gallon or two are available. If you need more, a paint store that sells the same brand of paint can match the color for the needed amount.
The store has hundreds of mis-tints and recycled paints, but it’s not for someone with very specific color preferences. Primers, sealers, faux finishes and floor paint are also usually available. Paints come from a major hardware store chain and other sources.
Other budget options include Abbott Paint (gallons $10 at 1808 Grand Av., St. Paul, 651-698-5518), ReUse Center (gallons $3 to $4 and quarts $2 to $3 at 2801 21st Av. S., Minneapolis, 612-724-2608), Hirshfield’s locations (gallons and quarts $5 or less) and Sherwin Williams locations (gallons $2 to $3 and quarts 50 cents to $1).
For free paint, try your county environmental recycling center. Check the blue pages in the phone book under a county’s “environmental services.”