What Are Hot Pink Primers For?

Just a quick question for paint savvy Dopers—in which applications are hot pink primers used as opposed to the more usual white primers? What are they, and why are they pink?

Also, an related question—what is SOP for painting aluminum house siding? Would it be an oil based primer with an acrylic latex topcoat?

I’m not sure I’ve heard of a hot pink primer, but I know there are some ceiling paints that are distinctly pink (or orange) until they dry. The reason is that it makes it easier to tell what you’ve already painted and what is left to do.

One other use of colored dye is so that inspectors can make sure that everything has been done up to code – e.g. the primer for PVC pipe is purple so that a plumbing inspector can see immediately whether the plumbing was assembled correctly (and, I assume, so a plumber can see that they missed a joint).

When we painted our livingroom a lovely shade of red we first needed to apply a primer., They added red to the primer base so it would take less coats to get a good solid red color as the finished product.

I am assuming the pink primer is just a pre-tinted variety for the same purpose.

You can also have primer made to match the old paint, so that you can do your spackling and then touch up the spackle. The surface will look pretty uniform now, even though it is mostly old and not the color you want. You can cover a uniform wall much more easily than you can one that has patches of very different color all over.

At least, I have found this to be true. People in paint stores tell me this is absolutely wrong, that any touchup you do on the old wall must be in the new color. I don’t know why the discrepancy.

The darker the paint color, the more difficult it is to cover with a single coat. For some reason this is especially true for red paints. The general recommendation then is to tint your primer to give you a head start on the coverage. Since most primers start out being white there is only so much you can do to bring the primer color up to the finish color - you can only add just so much colorant to paint before it starts to perform poorly. Thus pink - or other pastel - primers.

I recently painted a bathroom a dark maroon, and even though I started out with tinted (pink) primer it took over five coats before I had complete coverage. I really didn’t notice any difference between painting over areas with the tinted primer vs. the non-tinted, but they insist that it matters, so what do I know.

**Napier **- It’s probably not the *color *of the patched areas but the *glossiness *of the paint that is showing through. My guess is that spackling will have the gloss equivalent to very flat paint, so if the rest of the wall is painted in satin or semi-gloss, you might see the patched areas jump out.

Hot pink primers are to teach little Barbies how to read, silly!

(Yes, I waited until knowledgeable people posted real answers first)

Ask your paint supplier about DTM paints. (Direct To Metal) Using other paints on metal can have either good or bad results. By bad, I mean the entire coat of paint coming off like it was a wet decal. By good I mean a nice normal looking job. With DTM, you know you’re going to have a decent job. Also, the surface has to be nice and clean. Several different products available, my fave is TSP.

Some people color their primers for different reasons. As mentioned, you can get close to the finish color so the final coat doesn’t look weak. Some people off-color the primer to make sure they cover everything with the finish. Personally, I like to tint the primer to something near the finish color. ymmv