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Cheap vs. High-Quality Exterior Paint: Does Quality Matter?

March 14th, 2023 | 8 min. read

Cheap vs. High-Quality Exterior Paint: Does Quality Matter?

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The exterior of your home is the first protective layer for your interior. This means your siding and exterior paint are the first defense against wind, water, and weather.

You may think, “Painting my home’s exterior isn’t that serious.”

Or maybe, “Why spend thousands of dollars for an exterior paint job when I can choose the cheaper option? Isn’t all paint the same?”

The truth is not all exterior paint is created equal. Just like any product, cost and quality have a direct relationship. If you want a high-quality exterior paint that will last, it will cost more. 

Southwest Exteriors has offered professional exterior painting services in San Antonio since 1989. Because of our harsh climate, we only offer the best exterior paint that can withstand all types of South Texas weather. 

We understand the difference between cheap exterior paint and high-quality paint. We want you to understand that difference, too. 


What Makes High-Quality Exterior Paint Different From Cheap Exterior Paint?

Before choosing a contractor for your exterior paint project that offers the right products, you must be educated on all your options. 

You can work with a high-quality exterior paint contractor and achieve high-quality results. Or, you can choose a neighborhood handyman to paint your home with something from the local hardware store. 

If you’re reading this article, chances are you are wondering why some exterior painting options are so much more expensive than other options. And you want answers. 

Let’s look at the biggest differences between cheap and high-quality paint. 


1. Cost 

One of the biggest differences between high-quality and low-quality paint is the cost

It will always cost more if you want a higher quality product that will protect your home and last. 


  • If you want to paint your home yourself, hire a local handyman, or work with a less expensive contractor, it can cost anywhere from $300 to $2,000 as a starting cost for supplies and labor. 
  • A professional exterior painting project costs around $4,000 to $11,000, including materials and labor. 

As you can tell, the cost of low and high-quality exterior paint varies greatly. The cheaper the paint, the lower the quality. 


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2. Quality

After pointing out the difference in cost between cheap and high-quality exterior paint, the next thing to look at is quality. 

The quality of a product consists of how well it lasts, looks on your home, and how durable it is. 

  • Because cheap exterior paint is made to be lower-quality, it will not last very long or protect your home’s exterior. 
  • A high-quality exterior paint with a professional application may be more expensive, but it will perform at a higher quality, protect your home, and last. 

Remember that the cost and quality of paint and how it is applied have a direct relationship. The higher the quality of the paint, the more it will cost. 

This is one of the biggest reasons why outlining your goals for your project is so important so you can create the right budget and have realistic expectations for the outcome. 


3. Durability

At this point in this article, you understand that the biggest difference between low-quality and high-quality exterior paint is its cost and quality. The quality includes durability, color retention, and longevity. 

Durability, simply put, refers to how well a product holds up. For exterior paint, you want it to be durable against weathering, such as rain, sunlight, and freezing temperatures. You also want it to not blister, bubble, or peel over time. 

  • Low-quality paint is more susceptible to chipping, peeling, and blistering, making the paint not last on your exterior. 
  • High-quality paint is resistant to all weathering and is typically made not to blister, peel, or chip. 

Of course, the durability of your paint depends on how well it is made. While some paints may be more expensive, that does not automatically mean they are the most durable. 

To find the best exterior paint for your home, consider how long you want it to last and perform. Do you care if you have to repaint your home in less than a decade, or do you want to paint it once and not worry about it again? 

Knowing how durable you need your paint to be will help you find the right paint for your home. 


4. Color Retention

Another large factor that differentiates cheap paint from high-quality paint is color retention. This refers to how well a paint holds its true color over time. 

The color retention of paint depends on how well it is made (the quality). The lower the quality of the paint, the higher the likelihood of it fading and losing its color faster. 

  • If you choose the cheapest exterior paint on the market, it will fade and lose its color fairly quickly, especially in areas with maximum sun exposure. This will cause your exterior to look patchy and most likely also blister and peel, causing you to have to repaint in a few short years. 
  • High-quality paint is made to be fade-resistant even under extreme and constant sunlight. However, the paint must also be applied properly for the true color to come through. 

It is important to note that darker color paints are more expensive and susceptible to fading in areas with intense sunlight. Even high-quality dark paints will fade faster than lighter-colored paints when exposed to the same amount of light. 

Because of this, dark colors are not recommended for homes in areas with intense heat and sunlight or if your home does not have any shade coverage. 

If you want your new paint to last on your home and retain its color, you’ll want a high-quality product applied by a professional company that will provide you with successful results. 


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5. Longevity 

The final difference between low-quality and high-quality exterior paint is their longevity or lifetime on your home, which is the final quality of a paint’s durability. 

The higher the paint quality, the longer it will last on your home. 

  • A lower-quality paint may be the right option if you aren’t looking for a lifelong solution or only need a quick and easy fix. 
  • A high-quality exterior paint will not only protect your home and be more durable but will last. 

You must consider how long you want your new paint to last so you can choose the right paint that will meet your needs. 


Cheap vs. High-Quality Exterior Paint: Which Is Better For You? 

Now that you know the biggest differences between low-quality and high-quality exterior paint, you can better understand which is the right option for you. 

When choosing a paint for you, it’s important to know what you want regarding cost, performance, and longevity. 

  • If you are looking for the least expensive option and aren’t concerned about longevity, a cheaper paint may be the best option. 
  • If you are a long-term homeowner looking for a quality exterior paint that you want to last, then high-quality paint with a professional application will be the better option for you. 

Finding the right products and services for your project all depends on your goals for your project. 

What are you looking to pay? Will you DIY it or hire a professional company? How long do you want it to last? 

Once you outline your wants, goals, and needs for your exterior painting project, you can make the right decisions for you and your home. 

Are you still hesitant to start your exterior painting project? Check out this article that outlines three reasons why you shouldn’t wait any longer to start your next home remodeling project.


Looking For A High-Quality Exterior Painting Contractor? 

Southwest Exteriors offers high-quality siding replacements and exterior painting with the best products and professional application and services. 

Our expert preparation and attention to detail ensure your new paint won’t only look fabulous but will last on your San Antonio home. 

Ready to transform your home’s exterior? Schedule your commitment-free consultation today and get the look you love coming home to!


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