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Background: a large steel door at our office was recently painted with an oil-based paint, and we spent the day suffering through the fumes that permeated practically every space in the building.

What are the advantages of using oil-based paint over a zero-VOC latex enamel? Does it key better to steel (the door was primed; I'm not sure with what)? Is it more durable? What other advantages does it have over other options?

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They should have removed the door, and painted it in an unoccupied area. –  Tester101 Nov 9 '11 at 18:28
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Is this a question or just a rant? –  The Evil Greebo Nov 9 '11 at 18:44
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Well, it's kind of both. I honestly didn't know why latex wouldn't be acceptable, but the tone of the post was definitely influenced by the headache induced by the solvent fumes. Anyway, I have my answer; latex won't stick to metal properly, AND the oil enamel will be more durable. Wish I could give them both the check. –  KeithS Nov 9 '11 at 19:49
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@KeithS I removed the rant portion of the question to try to save it (it's got a few close votes right now). If you disagree, feel free to roll back my change. –  BMitch Nov 10 '11 at 14:29
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2 Answers

up vote 17 down vote accepted

Enamel paints are MUCH harder than latex and will stand up to a lot more abuse. You can also use harsher cleaning methods on them.

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Latex paints won't bond properly to metal, it will flake, peel, and bubble off.

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Understand that I only didn't give you the check because you already have 11k rep; gotta support the newer guys who also know stuff. :) –  KeithS Nov 9 '11 at 19:50
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Now ain't that the wrong reason :/ –  Konerak Dec 2 '11 at 18:28
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Social justice has made its way to stackexchange... –  RQDQ Feb 9 '12 at 21:07
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