We know you have questions about our primers. For your convenience, we’ve answered the most frequently asked questions on this page. Search for answers below and feel free to contact us for more information on our primers.

Do you really have a money-back guarantee?

Yes! We walk our talk. We stand behind, and in front, of our products (click here to see).

How do I prepare a substrate (surface) for priming with Mad Dog Paint products?

Prepare as you normally would, following normal painting and safety guidelines.

  • Wash and clean areas
  • Remove dirt and grease
  • Remove and replace damaged and rotten wood as necessary
  • Knock down excess rust as necessary.
  • Scrape and sand to your desired smoothness.
  • Caulk as necessary
  • Sand glossy areas and finishes
  • Allow surfaces to dry

Then apply Mad Dog Paint Products by brushing, rolling or spraying.

Click here to see a short video tutorial on how to apply Mad Dog Paint Products to a substrate.

What is WeatherSmart Adhesive Technology?

WeatherSmart Adhesive Technology is our proprietary blend of acrylic co-polymer emulsions that allow Mad Dog Paint Products to adjust to the changing weather conditions in your area. WeatherSmart Adhesive Technology enables our primers to remain permanently flexible (up to 300%) so that as the substrate expands and contracts with changing weather, the primer (and the paint on top) will expand and contract also, leading to a much longer paint life than traditional primers allow. 

Traditional primers become brittle over time and won’t flex with changes caused by exposure to sun, rain, snow, high and low humidity. The rigidity of the traditional primer in contrast to the constant expansion and contraction of the substrate will lead to cracking and then peeling.

WeatherSmart Technology also grips and bonds to substrates like glue (up to 300 PSI adhesion), locking down and encapsulating any peeling or damaged surface and prevents paint from peeling.

Where can I use Mad Dog Paint Products?

The short answer is any surface that will be top-coated with 100% latex paints or stain. 

  • Wood, metal, concrete, stucco, masonry and brick.
  • Rusty railings and nail heads
  • Cracking plaster and drywall (i.e. shower ceilings) – Crack Fix only
  • Window sills
  • Door frames
  • Cracking stucco areas
  • Galvanized ducts, pipes, and railings
  • Deck railings and decks

How do Mad Dog Dura-Prime and Mad Dog Deck Fix stop rust from leaching to the surface of the paint?

Both Mad Dog Dura-Prime and Mad Dog Deck Fix have flash rust blocking inhibitors. This stops metal from rusting while the water-based coating is drying. After two coats of primer is applied (and allowed to dry overnight), the rust can not bleed through from coating pinholes. Because our primer is permanently  flexible, this keeps oxygen from getting at the metal surface. No Oxygen, No Rust.

Traditional primers will crack and then the oxygen and moisture will attack the metal and the rust cycle begins again.

Check out this quick video tutorial on using Mad Dog Dura-Prime to prevent rust from nail heads spoiling your paint project.

How do Mad Dog Dura-Prime and Mad Dog Deck Fix stop tannin bleed?

Both Mad Dog Dura-Prime and Mad Dog Deck Fix have tannin blockers in them and will reduce or stop light to medium tannin bleed problems. Apply two coats of Mad Dog Paint products and allow them to dry overnight before applying the top coat of paint or solid color stain. Always test a small area on your project for effectiveness before continuing with the entire project.

How should Mad Dog Paint products be applied?

Mad Dog Paint products can be applied by brush, roller or spray application. We recommend back-brushing for all of our products. Back-brushing is a paint contractor term to mean that after spraying or rolling Mad Dog onto a substrate, the painter brushes over the freshly applied primer to fully work it into the substrate so it can penetrate in (and around peeling, flaking, cracking and rusting areas) and adhere better.

How thickly should Mad Dog Paint products be applied?

We recommend applying a thin coat of Mad Dog in most cases. Our Mad Dog Dura-Build product is a high-build primer to help even out and smooth over rough and uneven surfaces. 

How many coats do you need to apply?

One coat should be adequate. However, use common sense. If some areas of your project have a history of being continually unstable, apply another coat just to that problem area to make sure it is stabilized for the long term. And if the substrate suffers from rust or tannin bleed, then we recommend using two coats of Mad Dog Dura-Prime or Mad Dog Deck Fix to ensure that the rust inhibitors and tannin blockers solve the problem.

How long does it take to dry?

Our rule of thumb for all Mad Dog Paint products is that it takes 1 to 1 and a 1/5 hours to dry; and you can re-coat in 2 hours. Weather conditions might dictate longer dry and recoat times. 

Why are Mad Dog Paint products tacky after they dry?

All Mad Dog Paint products, with the exception of Mad Dog Dura-Build are tacky (slightly sticky) to the touch after drying. This tackiness is a product of the extraordinary adhesive qualities of Mad Dog, locking down and encapsulating problem areas, firmly gripping the top-coat and preventing paint from peeling.

What top-coats can I apply over Mad Dog Paint products?

Apply a superior grade of 100% (non alkyd modified) latex paints or solid color stains as a top coat. Do not recommend use oil-based, solvent-based or two part “hot” products. These do not have enough flexibility and will crack. Check all coatings for compatibility with Mad Dog Paint products before proceeding with entire project.

Can Mad Dog Paint products be tinted?

Yes and no. Dura-Prime can be tinted up to 4 ounces per gallon. Dura-Last and Dura-Build can be tinted with up to 2 oz per gallon. Deck Fix, Crack Fix and Dura-Seal 24 should not be tinted at all. Tinting will slow down dry times just a bit.

Can you use gloss or high sheen paint over Mad Dog Paint products?

You can top-coat with glossy latex paints over Mad Dog primers.

Glossy latex paints tend to be less flexible, and depending on the manufacturer, can sometimes can crackle over the permanently flexible Mad Dog Paint primers. We recommend applying a coat of satin or semi-gloss latex paint as the first coat, then, follow up with a finish coat of high gloss paint. This will give you a very nice deep glossy look and it is will last for years.

What are the benefits of using Mad Dog Paint products over using traditional products?

Great value for your money invested! Longevity and durability. Using Mad Dog primers on your project will double or triple the life of most paint jobs. Doubling or tripling the life of the paint project means less frequent painting or re-painting and that means you save loads of money. 

Traditional oil and latex primers become brittle and will peel within a few years. Because Mad Dog Paint products use our proprietary WeatherSmart Technology, the primer remains flexible and  expands and contracts with the substrate. 

Can oil/alkyd paint be applied over Mad Dog Paint products?

No! Only top quality 100% acrylic, latex paints can be used over Mad Dog primers.

If properly prepared, you can prime and stabilize almost any type of surface with our primers. 

What type of prep work is needed for painting vinyl siding and/or vinyl shutters with Mad Dog Paint products?

Proper prep would be washing off with soap and water, light sanding, and a brush or roll coat of Mad Dog primers. If the product is new, wipe down the surfaces with denatured alcohol to clean off any of the factory oils common of fresh plastics. This system also works for fiberglass columns, Azek trim, etc.

How long do you have to wait to apply paint to Mad Dog Primer if it has rained after applying the initial Mad Dog Primer?

Like all primers it is best to prime today and paint tomorrow. If it rains after you prime, allow the surfaces to dry for a few days and/or the moisture content is below 15% (use a moisture meter). Check the surfaces to see if any areas were damaged and need to be re-primed. Then paint. Most primers must be painted with 30 days or less, however, Mad Dog primers have tacky surfaces so it needs to be painted sooner to avoid contamination from dirt and debris. We recommend top-coating within five days of priming.

Are Mad Dog Paint products environmentally safe?

Yes! Mad Dog Paint products are green. All Mad Dog Paint products are water-borne, which means they are made with latex and acrylic resins. All of our products wash up with soap and water. No petroleum based-solvents are used in the making of Mad Dog Paint products. And you will not need to use any solvents when using Mad Dog on your project. All of our products are low-VOC (less than 48 g/l). VOC stands for Volatile Organic Compounds.

What is the best way to store a gallon of Mad Dog that is half used?

Store in a cool dry place. Make sure that the rim and lid/cap are fully clean so they achieve an airtight fit and can not leak. Flip the can over and store upside down so no air and get into spoil the paint. Grandma’s tip. Another tip for latex products: Put a drop or two of bleach into 2-3 tablespoons of water (enough to completely cover the surface of the paint in the can). Then flip over. this will make it airtight and the bleach will make it difficult for any mold to grow inside the can. Wrapping it in plastic ,etc, on top of our suggestions won’t hurt either.