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I have two five gallon buckets of Sherwin Williams PVA Drywall Primer & Sealer which is about a year and a half old. One is a partial bucket and the other is sealed and has never been opened.

I just opened them and they both have two small colored areas separated and floating near the top. One is orange and the other is green:

photo of primer with colored areas

I assumed that it was mold when I opened the partial bucket, but when the unused bucket had it too, I started to wonder if this was normal.

Is this primer bad or can it be used like it is?

  • diy.stackexchange.com/q/18133/46271. It will probably be fine just stir really well before using. See the link for related info. – Kris May 19 at 3:03
  • @kris Thanks, but what about the colored stuff in it? If it wasn't for that, I wouldn't have even questioned it.... – lnafziger May 19 at 4:16
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Primer-unbdercoat often has a higher pigment content than topcoat paint, this helps it cover marked surfaces better. usually the pigments are a combionation of carbon black and titanium oxide white.

When left to stand the different pigments will separate at different rates giving a mottled result like you show above. just give it a really good stir. Not ten laps with a popsicle stick, a it'll take a really good stir to mix the settled pigment back into the resin. I use a bent wire in an electric drill.

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    I've taken older paint back to the store where I bought it and they put it on the shaker machine for me. – Steve Wellens May 19 at 4:40
  • I have a helix paint stir that fits a 1/2” drill it works well and I fully agree with a good stir.+ – Ed Beal May 19 at 23:07
  • I have a small one from a coat-hanger bent into a sort of 'J' shape for small cans, and large one from re-bar for large pots. I don't paint often enough to purchase one of those helix ones – Jasen May 20 at 0:22

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