We recently repainted our window sills from bare wood using one layer of wood primer, then five consecutive layers of an enamel based paint. We waited one day to allow the paint coats to setup.

The paint is still not hard enough, and putting heavy items leaves marks.

What has gone wrong? Do I just need to keep on waiting for a full hardening?

  • 3
    define "furniture paint"? that's not a thing. Well whatever it is it sounds like your product has gone off. There's usually a date stamp on the can somewhere , although they can be a bit cryptic to decipher. Take a picture of the can, date stamp if any, and the "wood primer" for good measure and post them with your question if you would please.
    – user23534
    Aug 16, 2014 at 2:17
  • If this is an oil base paint, it hardens by oxidation of the long hydrocarbon chains causing cross-link polymerization. Too many layers at once. Jun 25, 2015 at 3:22

2 Answers 2


How old was the paint you used? Sometimes finishes do go bad over time...


first of all when painting bare wood. I would hope you sanded it down a bit first. This will ensure adhesion.

I'm a bit confused. You mention that you allowed a day to dry between coats, but now it's still wet?

I would say there was either a) too much moisture in the room where the furniture was setting so environment variables may have caused a delay in drying time b) the paint is bad. c) The original coats weren't dry and your continuous layers of paint gobbed it up. d) a + c

There are too many unknown variables to correctly decipher what happened. All we know is this shouldn't happen and going forward you may want to ensure proper drying conditions to get the desired results.

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