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What Paint to Consider When Striping

Line Striping is an integral part of parking lot maintenance. It provides effective communication for the flow of traffic to keep drivers and pedestrians safe.

When discussing line striping with your local contractor, make sure you consider the types of paint being used for parking, ADA Compliance, crosswalks and roadways. There are different types of paint designed specifically for roadways and parking lots. A few common paint materials are hot extruded thermoplastic, latex (water) based and solvent (oil) based.

Hot extruded thermoplastic material is ordinarily used for major highways and roadways because it lasts for 3-5 years and is more durable for heavily trafficked areas. It is made up of plastic and glass beads that make the paint reflective. While this material is great for highly trafficked areas, it has the tendency to be slippery when wet and is not advised to use for crosswalks or parking lines.

Prior to 1990, many companies used solvent (oil) based paint for major highways and roadways. Solvent based paint is also known as oil paint (petroleum and vegetable are two common oils used). This type of paint is more difficult to clean up because the oil repels water. Due to the fumes in the solvent based paint, it is unsafe to use in enclosed areas like parking garages. Solvent based paint is a great alternative to latex paint during the cooler months, as it can be applied in lower temperatures.

While thermoplastic and solvent based paints are excellent choices for heavily trafficked areas, the most common type of paint used for line striping parking lots is latex; also known as waterborne paint. This type of paint is easy to use, fast drying and environmentally friendly. The lifespan for this paint is usually 1-2 years. Latex paint is more cost effective than both thermoplastic and solvent based.

When choosing which type of material is best for you, consider the location where the paint will be applied. Make sure that you consult a contractor, like American Asphalt Company, that understands budget and can help you make the best decision for the paint that will be applied to your parking lot and roadways when striping.