The following are representative of the questions we answer on a daily
basis, from both homeowners and contractors. We would be pleased to assist
you with any additional questions you might have.
I understand that your flat acrylic wall paint is not only beautiful
but scrubbable. Realistically, how long could I expect a Eurolux job to
last in an active residential kitchen?
A properly applied matte Eurolux finish could easily yield 12 to 15 years
service in a busy kitchen environment. Because Eurolux contains no inexpensive
chalky fillers and extenders, it is a beautiful, "tight" finish,
which repels stains and does not burnish.
How much do PANTONE Paints cost?
Most of our finishes are in the $80 - $90 per Eurogallon price range.
A Eurogallon is approximately 2.5 liters in size and will normally
provide the same coverage as a U.S. gallon of similar gloss.
Why are your paints so expensive?
More to the point, why are domestic paints so inexpensive? The United
States represents an aberration in the world market for architectural
coatings. This is a consequence of the absence of performance standards
for paint in our country, as well as the unusually short average residency
period (four years for the typical family!). Under these circumstances,
domestic manufacturers have focused on producing impermanent formulations,
which are typically heavily laden with chalk and other inexpensive fillers.
Quality has been compromised in favor of low price for more than 40 years
in this country. In 2003, the average gallon of architectural coating
sold for less than $15. In view of wholesale and retail margins, packaging
and transportation costs, a $15 can of paint will seldom contain more
than $2 or $3 in raw materials.
We note that, in contrast, American automobiles and boats are painted
with formulations, which are engineered to perform extremely well under
adverse conditions, and show a beautiful depth of color and touch. Automotive
and marine coatings sell for $100-$300 per gallon.
PANTONE Paints by Fine Paints of Europe paints are expensive because
they are produced to be the best they possibly can be, rather than to
sell at a specific price point. Our coatings contain no inexpensive fillers
or extenders, and are composed of only the finest pigments, oils and resins,
which are conditioned and combined to yield a beautiful and extremely
In this world, you get what you pay forand with PANTONE Paints
by Fine Paints of Europe, you pay for and get the best.
My contractor gave me a bid of $4,000 to paint several rooms in my home.
This bid included labor and material (a top domestic brand of paint).
Can you estimate what he might charge to do the same work with PANTONE
Paints by Fine Paints of Europe?
The cost of this job using our high quality coatings should be approximately
15% more, or $4,600 (labor and material). For this marginally higher price,
you can expect to receive finishes that will look and feel dramatically
different from the best conventional domestic paints, and probably last
two to three times as long. It will be a long time before you need a painter
I am painting doors with a Hollandlac Satin finish. In the Fine Paints
of Europe Specifier's Manual you recommend using one coat of Brilliant,
followed by one coat of Satin. Why can't I apply two coats of Satin?
You can indeed apply two coats of Satin and still achieve a very good
finish. We have found, however, that the application of Brilliant before
Satin offers several advantages. Not only is the Brilliant easier to apply,
it provides a more uniform and chip-resistant foundation for the Satin
than does the Satin Enamel itself. The same principle is used by quality
floor finishers who apply two or three coats of a high-gloss urethane
varnish on new floors before 'finishing' the floors with a satin urethane
varnish. The integrity and durability of the system are provided by the
gloss finish, whereas the aesthetic is provided by the final Satin coat.
Do you recommend that doors be painted vertically (on hinges) or horizontally
In a perfect world, doors should be painted horizontally and dried vertically.
A freshly-painted door which is allowed to dry in a horizontal position
will frequently serve as a magnet to airborne dust. This dust, as well
as other imperfections, can be eliminated by lightly sanding between coats.
After application of the final coat, doors that have been painted in a
horizontal position should immediately be moved into a vertical position
against a wall, with the wet side at a slight downward angle.
On simple door re-coat projects involving one coat, it is normally best
to paint doors in place, on their hinges.
How long will Hollandlac or Eco application last?
A Hollandlac or Eco application, consisting of a full FPE primer coat and
two finish coats, applied to a sound substrate according to instructions,
can normally be expected to look freshly-painted for four to five years.
This finish will typically remain presentable and serviceable for at least
an additional five years before requiring renewal with a single maintenance
coat of Hollandlac or Eco.
How do I achieve a brilliant, mirror-like finish on my exterior woodwork?
Front doors can be painted by the same method used to achieve dramatic
high-gloss finishes on the doors of London and the facades of Paris. The
door should be rough-sanded (100 grit) to break up the existing finish,
and then primed with Hollandlac Oil Primer. After drying, the door should
be skim-coated with Swedish Putty and sanded smooth with fine grit paper
(220 or finer) until the desired degree of perfection is achieved. Without
re-priming, the door should then be painted with two or more coats of
Hollandlac Brilliant Enamel, polishing between coats with a paper of 220
or finer grit. Do not sand after the final coat. In theory and practice,
it is possible to make a 200-year old door look like the fender on a Mercedes,
although in most cases it is prudent to leave a few flaws for the sake
of authenticity. The same treatment will make an old set of kitchen cabinets
look better than new. For interior use and in milder climates, a similar
effect can be achieved with one or multiple coats of Brushing Putty, applied
in much the same manner.
*For more information on Brushing Putty, please call 866-MYCOLOR
I am painting my house with Eurolux House Paint. Can I use this paint
on my house trim?
Yes. Eurolux House Paint is suitable for all wood exterior surfaces. Many
clients, however, prefer to use Hollandlac or Eco Brilliant Enamel on doors
I power-washed my house after all the prep work was done. How long do
I need to wait before I begin painting?
We have seen a great deal of damage done over the years by power-washers,
and we do not recommend their use except in the hands of professional
house washers, operating from ladders or boom trucks. Frequently, power-washers
are improperly operated, from a standing position on the ground, which
results in large volumes of water being forced behind clapboards and shingles.
Under the worst circumstances, it can take months for this water to escape
through the slow process of evaporation. If paint is applied before the
moisture has dissipated, it will likely fail within 12 months. We would
strongly suggest that you purchase an inexpensive moisture meter, and
not initiate application of finishes until the moisture level is below
What is the best time of year to paint the exterior wooden homes in
northern half of the US?
Moisture levels of exterior wood are normally lowest in September and
October. Temperature and humidity are typically ideal for proper drying
during the autumn months when most house painters paint their own homes
(this rule does not apply to the Pacific Northwest where it sometimes
never stops raining).
How do I paint a wooden floor?
The floor should be sanded to abrade any remaining finish, and then thoroughly
washed with a powdered cleaner such as Spic-n-Span. Use water as sparingly
as possible, and allow the floor to dry thoroughly. Once you are certain
that the floor is dry, apply one coat of Hollandlac Oil Primer and allow
to dry for at least 24 hours. The floor should then be lightly sanded
with a 150-grit paper to the desired level of smoothness, vacuumed and
tacked dust-free. The floor should then be painted with either a FPE Floor
& Deck System or a Hollandlac Brilliant System.
Alkyd paints dry in a matter of hours, but require a full 21 days to
cure to their maximum hardness. Painted floors should be protected from
heavy use during this curing period. The instructions are much the same
for decks and porches, although in this instance it is extremely helpful
if you can prime the bottom with Hollandlac or Eco Primer. Paint failure
on porches frequently results from moisture infiltration from below, which
can be blocked off by a FPE alkyd coating.
What are the advantages of oil paint vs. acrylic paint for interior
In the satin and gloss finishes which are commonly used on woodwork, oil
enamels traditionally exhibited a richness, touch and leveling ability
which was unmatched by waterborne paints. However, with the introduction
of Eco, many professional painters and designers believe they have discovered
an odorless, waterborne alkyd, which can be used interchangeably with
traditional Hollandlac oil enamels. Upon visual and tactile examination,
an Eco finish is indistinguishable from a traditional Hollandlac enamel
I am accustomed to using satin enamel on walls, in order to achieve
durability and washability. Must I do the same with your coatings?
No. If you are seeking a beautiful, durable finish, which is easily maintained,
Eurolux Matte Acrylic will more than exceed your hopes and expectations.
Eurolux Matte is as durable, scrubbable and chip-resistant as our Hollandlac
and Eco Brilliant paints! We experimented by smearing ketchup, mustard
and chocolate syrup on the walls of our Woodstock showroom, which are
painted with Eurolux Matte. After allowing these condiments to dry, we
were able to remove them with nothing more than a sponge and warm water.
No residue or blemishes remained after cleaning! Our clients can be assured
of scrubbability and chip-resistance in a non-burnishing wall coating,
whether they select Eurolux Matte, Satin or Gloss. These remarkable scrubbable
acrylic paints can be expected to yield ten to 15 years of beauty and
service in an active home.
How do I prepare my existing stained and varnished kitchen cabinets
Great care should be taken before painting previous 'furniture' finishes,
due to the high likelihood that silicone waxes and cleaners have been
used on these surfaces. The presence of silicone can be expected to interfere
with the ability of a wooden substrate to properly accept a paint finish.
Silicone is present in most of the popular household waxes sold in the
Wood surfaces should be well abraded with a 150-grit paper to break up
any existing finish, and then tacked clean. All surfaces should then be
wiped down with Wil-Bond, which will seal the silicone and promote bonding.
Surfaces should then receive at least one coat of Hollandlac or Eco Primer/Undercoat
or *Brushing Putty, which should be allowed to dry and then sanded to
the desired degree of smoothness with 220-grit or finer paper. At this
point, you can apply the desired Hollandlac or Eco finish.
*For more information on Brushing Putty, please call 866-MYCOLOR
Can Formica be painted?
Yes, although painted Formica will no longer serve as an appropriate surface
for chopping and other rough use. Formica should be thoroughly washed
with powdered detergent, and then primed with XIM - UMA Primer (according
to instructions on container). XIM Primer is available through most good
independent paint merchants, or can be ordered from Phillips. After allowing
the UMA primer to dry for 3 or 4 hours it should be sanded glass-smooth
with a very fine paper - 220 or higher. After tacking to remove all dust,
apply one coat of Hollandlac or Eco according to instructions. Concentrate
on putting on a thin, even coat. After allowing Hollandlac or Eco to dry
overnight, re-sand your countertop with 220 paper and tack clean again.
Apply second coat and allow to dry overnight before use. Please apply
all coatings in a dust-free environment. Remember, the above solution
will not be as durable as your original countertops, but it can extend
their life in a "light duty" setting.
I have oak kitchen cabinets with a heavy open grain pattern. The cabinets
are very well made, but I strongly dislike the oak grain pattern. Any
*FPE Brushing Putty is a high-build sanding primer that can be used effectively
to reface and conceal grain patterns in oak, luan and other grainy woods.
This primer is applied with an inexpensive brush, and then sanded to a
glass-smooth finish. In some cases, two coats of Brushing Putty may be
required, but your effort will produce a smooth, uniform surface in which
the grain pattern has been completely concealed.
A Swedish Putty treatment is an alternative to the use of Brushing Putty
for concealing grain patterns. However, in most cases Swedish Putty is
more appropriate for surfaces that are gouged or heavily dented. Swedish
Putty is especially effective in highlighting a high-gloss finish, although
the application of Swedish Putty is quite labor-intensive.
*For more information on Brushing Putty, please call 866-MYCOLOR
White enamels always yellow in my kitchen. Why does this happen and
how can I prevent it in the future?
White alkyd paints, even great alkyd paints such as Hollandlac and Eco,
will yellow in the absence of abundant ultraviolet light. Dark rooms create
an environment in which yellowing occurs quite rapidly. This is especially
troublesome in rooms such as kitchens and bathrooms, in which a yellowed
painted finish presents an unacceptable contrast to white enamel appliances.
The only alternative is to utilize Eurolux Acrylic, which is non-yellowing
under all circumstances. Eurolux White will provide an ideal solution
to your yellowing problem.
Why is it so difficult to find a good painter?
The shortage of good painters in this country results from the unwillingness
of American homeowners to adequately compensate qualified professional
painters. Most homeowners do not shop for medical, legal or other professional
assistance on the basis of price, but this is the primary criteria used
in the selection of painters.
In Europe, a qualified painter is on the same socio-economic level as
an accountant or dentist in the United States. Dutch painters serve a
six-year apprenticeship, belong to a guild, and attend regular refresher
courses on product and technique. These craftsmen are well compensated
and take great pride in their work.
High-quality professional painters are also available in the United States,
and they can normally be located through a reputable, independent paint
Negotiate a fair price for a first-class job, and you will be well rewarded
for your investment with many years of beauty and satisfaction. On an
annualized basis, it is much less expensive to use a first-class paint
and contractor than to try to save by cutting corners. In painting, as
in other aspects of life, you tend to get what you pay for.