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Community and Q&A

Can you paint over XPS to protect it from sun?

RamblinRose | Posted in General Questions on

I put on a house addition with XPS on the exterior. I won’t be able to side it until next year, leaving the foam exposed to sun and elements.

Is it advisable to coat it with a latex paint or housewrap?

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  1. GBA Editor
    Martin Holladay | | #1

    Here is some information on leaving Dow Styrofoam exposed to sunlight: "It should not be stored outside under sunshine for a prolonged period of time (over a month) to avoid excessive exposure to sunlight (UV). A sheet of polyethylene film may be used on top of the STYROFOAM Brand XPS Foam Insulation to prevent excessive exposure to sunlight (UV)."

    The information is found on this website:

    If you do choose to install polyethylene on top of the XPS to reduce UV exposure, be sure to remove and discard the poly when the siding is installed.

  2. kevin_in_denver | | #2

    Latex paint works well to protect it from sun exposure. I've done it. I wouldn't try to push it much past one year, though. It does nothing to prevent damage from rodents and birds, which could be a consideration.

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