I'm painting my fence (with water based paint) and have more to do tomorrow.

How long can I leave the paint brush in water until it's likely to be damaged? I think it's a synthetic bristled one.

How long until the roller sleeve is likely to be damaged? It has polyester fibre on it.

What about other types of bristle/fibre?

3 Answers 3


The way I've done this is not using water, instead take the roller or brush and put in a big ziplock bag and stick in the fridge. yes it may look gross in there but it won't be a problem to return to continue painting. It won't be able to dry as much. Certainily it won't dry out. Seems like my wife left one in there for a couple days to return AND multiple times too.

  • My girlfriend and I painted our entire house using this method. We kept each color separate and in their bags when we were finished for the day. It worked out great. Jan 23, 2012 at 20:05

I think they would be fine overnight since you said you will be using it tomorrow. Just make sure to get excess water off of them before you dip in the paint again. Otherwise, you could dilute the paint.

I usually clean the brushes between each use, since they clean quickly, and then spin them dry. For rollers, I always use 5 gallon buckets for the paint, and then just submerge the roller (roll and roller) in the paint. Put the lid on the bucket, and come back tomorrow.


If only one day and night , leave in the paint tray , and cover with plastic bag and push plastic onto paint to seal . Just careful not to use bag when paint has dried on it . As the paint can flake off into your paint .

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