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Can You Use Oil Based Paint Over Water Based Primer?

Only painting is not enough, you have to make sure the paint lasts long on the surface. One needs to choose the correct paint in order to satisfy their desire. To make the paint stable and last long, adding primer and sealer is a must. 

There will always be an impression of primer and sealer on the paint.

Following the below tips regarding oil based paint using over water based primer would help you to progress in your work. 

Can you use oil-based paint over water-based primer?

One can use oil-based paint over the water-based primer. Well, you should rather follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Still, while applying oil based paint over water based primer, make sure the primer is all dried. Give it enough time to cure. Otherwise, the paint will not be set properly.

Oil-based paints are reliable and give a shiny and glossy finish on the surface. Moreover, oil based paint also protects the surface from water damage. It becomes like a barrier to damage. Before painting, it is necessary to prime the surface. 

Otherwise, the paint will not stick properly to the surface. 

For priming, you can either choose water based primer or an oil based primer for the surface. It is possible to use a water-based primer before applying oil based paint. It gives some benefits as given below.

Easy to clean:

Water-based primers are easier to clean. You can even spot uneven surfaces easily. As a result, detecting the imperfections sooner can help you to make that correct. Apart from that, the water based primer dries easily. It does not take longer than an oil based primer. 

Thus, it saves your time and energy.

Proper adhesion:

Water-based primers make the surface ready for painting. It provides greater adhesion of the paint to the surface. Mostly, it protects the paint and attaches it perfectly to the surface. 

Moreover, you can use the painted things indoors without worrying about getting the things damaged. 

A matte finish:

The water based primer gives a matte finish on the surface of the cabinet or anything. It dries quickly making the uneven tone visible so that you can correct them. You can correct the bumps as well. Moreover, it releases less harmful materials than an oil based primer.

A water based primer does not seal the surface as strong as an oil based primer. Yet, it is good for the things used indoors. The primer also gives protection from marks and water damage. Though it has base water, it can attach to the oil paint and give a smooth finish at the end. 

Will oil-based paint stick to water-based primer?

Yes, oil based paint sticks to water based primer. Water-based primer is suitable for oil based paint. Water-based primer creates enough adhesion between the surface and the paint.

As a result, the paint can stick to the surface properly. Well, the primer should be completely dried before applying the paint to it. You can also use several coats of water based primer. 

What’s the difference between oil and water based paint?

Oil and water based paint are totally different from each other. They both have different purposes to serve. You can choose the paint according to the finish you want. Or considering other benefits. Some difference between the oil and water based paint is given below.


An oil based paint has a base of oil and a water based paint has a base of water. It gives an idea that an oil based paint would be a thicker one than the water based. As a result, it would also be a bit tough to apply the oil based paint. 


An oil-based paint gives a shiny and glossy finish on the surface. Meanwhile, water based paint gives a matte or semi-matte finish. 


Oil-based paint is more durable in comparison to water based paint. An oil based paint can prevent water damage and also vanish marks and stretches. Oil-based paint can last long on the surface without getting a mark.


Oil-based paint is mostly used in indoor stuff as it is not suitable for exposure to the sun for a longer time. While water-based paint can give protection from UV rays yet in different weather conditions it does not do well. 


A water based paint is easier to clean than an oil based paint. Well, you would require to apply perfect coats of oil paint to make the surface even and smooth. 

What’s the difference between oil and water based primer?

Oil and water based primers are used on different paints. For some paints both of them are suitable. While for some paints you need to go with only one of the primers. Some of the remarkable differences between the oil and water based primer are given below. 


Oil-based primers are good for sealing the surface. You can use it on bare wood or woodstuffs. Meanwhile, water based primers are good for cabinets, and walls. Well, water based primers are not good for sealing the bare woods. 

They do not provide that much protection on the surface.


Cleaning the water based primer is easier than cleaning up the mess created by oil based primer. Well, you can put several coats of primers while making them even on the surface. 

Drying time:

Even though oil based primer is helpful to protect the paint from damage yet it takes a huge time to dry. If you are applying for several coats, you need to wait for a long time. On the other hand, water-based primer takes only a few hours to dry, making the work finish in a short time. 

When should I use a water-based primer? 

Water-based primers are widely used as it goes with any paint. You can either paint over it with oil based paint or water based paint. Anything will stick to the paint. Water-based primer creates a smooth coat between the paint and surface to protect the surface. 

You should use a water based primer for the below conditions. 

Saving time:

As a water based primer dries in a short time, it saves your time from waiting for too long. You can also apply several coats within a few hours.

On particular things:

For the stuff which is going to be used on the outside of the house, you should use a water based primer. Well, for ceilings and walls, you can also use water based paint. Well, it would not last long yet provide a beautiful environment. 

Cleaning up:

Cleaning up water based primer is comparatively easy. You can wash it with only water. The mess would be less. 

When should I use an oil-based primer? 

Oil-based primer is most suitable as it provides better protection on the surface. Well, it adheres to the surface strongly providing the surface a rough layer of coat. Though it requires a high drying time, the end finish is usually smooth. 

You can use oil based primer to serve the below purposes.


Oil-based primers work like a sealer to the surface. It seals the surface with its strong and tough coat. As a result, the surface becomes smooth and harmless.

On particular things:

Oil-based primer is best for woods and indoor used stuff. Bare woods usually require a coat to seal the surface and make it even. When you apply oil based paint over oil based primer, it would seal the paint to the surface. 


Oil-based primer is known to provide better protection from water and damages like marks and scratches. Well, the thick coat of oil-based primer also hides off previous marks and imperfections. It also provides protection in any weather. 

Well, in bad conditions it can also crack. 

Which is better, oil-based or water-based primer?

Usually, an oil based primer is better than a water based primer. Though water based primer dries quickly, it can not protect the surface as strongly as the oil based primer. 

Oil-based primer is more useful to protect the surface from water damage. Moreover, it seals the surface and gets rid of marks, and stretches.  

Final thoughts:

Overall, one can use oil based paint over water based primer. An oil based paint easily adheres to the water based primer. Even it provides better protection to the surface from water damage. Though water based primer is not a wise choice for durability, it is easy to clean up after applying.