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Paint Matching

I hope this is an easy question, but we bought a gallon of paint from Home Depot last week, and well ran out. Unfortunately it was with leaving a couple walls not complete, needing touch ups. My fiance' swears we cannot get matching paint without having to re-do all that has been done. It has been my understanding with today's computer controlled exact mixing machines, this is not an issue. Since I am the one who used the last of the paint, I could be in serious trouble here, help!



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Posted 2012-02-20T03:14:29+0000  by paininpaint paininpaint




Given that you still have the label from the top of the paint can, your Home Depot should be able to get you a very close match - but there is no guarantee. Smart painters always "box" different gallons of the same color to avoid any problems with paint variations between gallons. It is certainly worth a try before re-doing the entire job.


A note on proper paint technique: you should never start a wall unless you are positive that you can finish that wall. When painting a wall, an entire section of wall , including "cutting in" and general rolling should be finished as you work your way down the wall. "Cutting in" the entire room first, or last, is a no-no. The goal in painting is to always maintain a wet edge on the paint. It is never correct to roll or brush back over paint that has already set or dried. Had you followed these "rules", you would not now be in need of touch-up paint with no logical cut-off point, such as in an interior or exterior corner.


Even if you had had enough paint, going back and doing the cut-in at a later time risks a sheen difference or even a color difference where it got two coated along the edges.


I watch HGTV or This Old House episodes and see this poor technique being used all the time by people who should know better . IT DRIVES ME CRAZY!

Posted 2012-02-20T04:46:00+0000  by ordjen

Hey paininpaint!


Let me be the first to welcome you to the home depot community!


Ordjen is right if you still have the sticker that is on the top of the can of paint you purchased we will be able to look up the color you got. Or if you got the color you liked from a paint chip even if it isnt from a brand we carry we can still look up the tints that go into it. This way you get an exact match to the color of your painted wall. If it was a custom color match if you lost the sticker you can bring in the item that you color matched before. Unfortunatly this might match a little diffrently causing your color to look diffrent then the one on the painted wall.


I hope this helps!



Posted 2012-02-20T14:01:52+0000  by BostonianChick

Hey paininpaint!


You should be in no trouble at all ... at least when it comes to matching your paint.


Bring the can and lid to The Paint Pit and your Paint Associate will either scan the label to remake another gallon, or color match using what is left in the can. Either way, you should get a very good re-creation of your color.


The main thing to remember is that paints typically look lighter when wet and darken to the full color as they dry ... so apply the new paint and then give it four-hours to dry. If your Paint Associate does their job well, you'll never see the difference.


Personal Note: Most couples that come to The Paint Pit share ideas and go away with smiles on their faces. But every once in a while, I see all-out conflict over color selection, application techniques, etc. Although I love your screen name, if I were in your situation (engaged), I might consider changing my screen name just to prevent my fiance from getting the impression I was referring to them. You know, you might try something like HoneyDIYer, JustPainted, or WorshipThePaintGoddess.


It's just a thought?!?


When all else fails, a little humor, a little time, and a skilled Paint Associate will usually make most things better.


Good Luck!

Posted 2012-02-21T16:00:10+0000  by Pat_HD_ATL

The other comments were correct; however, I was told by an associate today that even with the label, they could "only get close," because Home Depot had recently changed their tint vendor.  So the tints and chemicals they are using to mix paint in the stores use different formulas, etc.  They did a "conversion" for me, based on my label, but I have not tried the new paint yet.  I only need to touch up a few small bruises, I hope I don't have to repaint an entire wall because of this.  Interestingly, my wife is a hair colorist, and her salon recently changed color lines - she is really having a hard time because none of her formulas are working without a LOT of correction and testing.  She is thorough enough to not let a client leave without being happy and satisfied, but it has been a long route so far.  Why not leave good enough alone?  I paid $32.00 for a gallon of paint, certainly they don't have to nickel and dime on the tints they use?

Posted 2012-05-28T21:44:48+0000  by parkerti




The recent alterations to the Home Depot tints were not as effort to "nickel and dime". Indeed, the conversion was a very costly operation. It would have been far cheaper to leave well enough alone. However, leaving well enough alone has never been the watch word at Behr Paint nor Home Depot.


The conversion of tints accomplished a couple things: 


 The old tints were loaded with VOC's. VOC's are basically petroleum distillates that evaporate into the air and harm the environment. The new tints are far lower in VOC's. Along with the recently reformulated Premium Plus paints which are now VOC free, tinted Behr paints are now extremely low or VOC free. Behr's end goal is to be totally VOC free. The old colorant system was the Archilles Heel.


A side benefit, is that the newly formulated paints are much faster drying, especially the deep colors which may have as much as 12 or 13 ounces of colorant. The old colorants severely slowed drying and curing.


Finally, new colorants were added which allow for more accurate tinting. Under the old system, certain colors could not be obtained. This was particularly a problem when trying to computer match other manufacturer's colors.


Only two of the colorants changed to where the old formulas would not work:  The new blue and green tints are much stronger and require far less tint to obtain the same color. The new blue and green also allow for much better coverabilty. Dark bright blues and greens now cover much better, similar to the high hide red which was added a couple years ago. These formerly could take several coats before complete coverage was obtained.


Hope this clarifies what has transpired in the Home Depot paint department. Rest assured, it was part of the on going effort to improve Behr products.

Posted 2012-05-29T04:25:41+0000  by ordjen

Hello Parkerti!


Sorry to learn about the confusion over your paint color.


Ordjen did an outstanding job explaining the technical differences between the old and new tints.


I just want to assure you that if the formula "conversion" does not work, your paint color can be accurately re-created by color matching.


What you need for an accurate match is a sample of continuous color about the size of a quarter.


Harvest a sample by cutting a one-inch square off the surface of the sheetrock. I usually recommend going behind a door or a piece of furniture ... an area that isn't easily seen. When you spackle nail holes, patch this spot as well.


The other option is to bring the original can used to paint the walls. Have it shaken to ensure the paint is well blended and then make a sample of the color using at least two coats of paint on the end of a stir stick.


Personally I prefer taking a sample off the wall. This accounts for sun fade which may have occurred since the walls were originally painted.


NOTE: The key to good color matching is the quality of the sample. If there is ever any doubt about converting the color, I prefer to make a sample-size container, verify the color, and then make the gallon(s). This prevents sending customers home with a color, about which they are uncertain. Sending you home with confidence in your color is one of the most essential aspects of customer service that a paint associates can share with their customers.

Posted 2012-05-29T14:19:25+0000  by Pat_HD_ATL

I need help


I have tHis old formula.


Home depot old formula


Premium plus int flat wall



ULTRA PURE WHITE (1050/2-1050)


COLORANT               OZ  48  96      

B      LAMP BLACK     0     6     1

C      YELLOW OXID  0    20    1

V      MAGENTA           0    4     1



They tried to do the same color and it did not work

Posted 2013-06-26T14:58:16+0000  by Andrew2009

Welcome to our community Andrew2009,


I'm sorry you are having so much trouble. :smileysad: By looking at the formula that you have posted here I can come to a few conclusions.


1- This is not a Home Depot color. When this paint was made originally, the associate had to go into our electronic "Competitor Formula" book and look up the color. If the company who makes this color releases the formula to us, we are able to look up the formula. I don't know which paint company this is (I can tell it’s from a company with the acronym MOP, but I don't know what that stands for). I can tell it's a color called "Summertime". At the store, the associate can look up this color and pick the correct color out of our electronic formula book.


2- This is an old formula (from February 2007). Last year, we switched over our tints to low VOC tints. When this happened, all of our formulas changed. So, if the associate manually enters this exact formula into our system, the color will be wrong.


Can you tell me what the paint associate at your store did when they gave you the wrong color? Did the associate look up the color in the electronic formula book? Did the associate do a color match? Did they do a manual formula?  If you don't know, you can look on the lid of the new can of paint. It will say "Color Match" on the label if it was a color match. If they looked it up in the formula book, it should say "CF Summertime" on the label. If they did a manual formula, it will say “Man” right above the box with the formula. Please let me know which one of these the associate did. Once I know the answer to this I can help you resolve your issue. :smileyhappy:


I look forward to hearing from you!


Christine :smileyhappy:

Posted 2013-06-26T16:30:09+0000  by Christine_HD_ATL

I don't have the name but i know the store



they did the Matching because they didn't find the old formula


please see what I have now

CLRNT     CL    LL   VUL

OZ              0       0     0

384 TH       29    71    2


Color is too light




Posted 2013-06-26T16:51:58+0000  by Andrew2009

Thank you for writing back so quickly!


Since the color is too light, I would highly recommend taking it back to the store and having the paint associate work on it for you. It may take them some time, but they should be able to get it closer for you. Color matching is not an exact science, and sometimes the color needs to be adjusted manually. When you go back to the store, make sure you bring in the original color as well, that way the associate knows what the outcome should be.


- Christine

Posted 2013-06-26T17:00:50+0000  by Christine_HD_ATL
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