(Reviewed 20 March 2018)

Although paint is commonly used on and in buildings, it is important to recognise why it is being used in a particular area so that its properties can be maximised. It is mainly used to protect and decorate porous or unstable or degradable surfaces – such as timber products, steel and paper-faced plasterboard – from the effects of the environment, cleaning agents, oils, etc. It is also commonly used to refurbish dirty or shabby surfaces, to hide defects in the surface and to alter the colour or gloss characteristics of the surface.