Resene Paints - home page

Timber movement - primer appearing under new paint

From the Resene paint and decorating problems solver

Timber is a natural building material that has an affinity with water. When it is first cut, it is absolutely saturated and must be dried out to be useful. Normally it is dried to about 17% moisture content. As the moisture dries out the timber also shrinks. If the timber dries out further it will shrink more and if it absorbs water it will swell.

In some ways it is similar to a sponge cloth that also shrinks when it is dry and visibly swells when it is wetted.

If a weatherboard is made and fixed during the cooler months of the year it is liable to contain water at the top end of the range. If that weatherboard has been painted with a paint, the colour of which absorbs heat; as the warmer months come, some drying out of the board can occur with the inevitable further shrinkage. That is when a tell-tale line of primer can become visible at the bottom of each weatherboard.

This problem is more likely to occur with dark colours and on exposed northern aspects. And the remedy? The only remedy is touching up with the original paint to give a uniform finish.


Resene Paint and Decorating Problems Solver
Learn more about typical painting problems and situations you may find when decorating. Also, understanding paint hazards and essential precautions - putting your safety first!

Problem solver topics   Safety topics   Ask an Expert

Resene Paints Ltd

Resene Paints Ltd   –

We would love to hear from you if you wish to use Resene's images, information and ideas for social medial, blogs, newsletters and other media use. Please email and let us know what you need, what it is for and how Resene will be acknowledged as the source of the content. We are happy to assist with most requests.

Our vision is to be respected as a trusted, ethical and sustainable company and acknowledged as the leading provider of innovative paint and colour technology. View Resene’s profile, Quality Policy, Environmental Policy and Health & Safety Policy.

Any personal data, such as name, address, phone, email details, supplied to Resene for the purposes of receiving newsletters, orders etc will be retained by Resene Paints Ltd and used only by Resene Paints Ltd and its trusted agencies for the purposes of communication/promotion/providing service to you. We do not sell, trade or otherwise transfer your personal data to outside third parties. If you wish to opt out of communication from Resene please complete our contact us form. View our full Privacy Policy.

Colours shown on this website are a representation only. Please refer to the actual paint or product sample. Resene colour charts, testpots and samples are available for ordering online.   See measurements/conversions for more details on how electronic colour values are achieved.

View Videos