Do you need primer with Zinsser AllCoat?

Here at The Bloke Cave, we are in love with Zinsser AllCoat, this is a really high-quality paint with tons of different applications. But when using AllCoat do you need to use a primer? Well, let’s find out.

Do you need primer with Zinsser AllCoat?

No. Zinsser AllCoat is a self-priming paint so you don’t need to use a primer. You can see this proven by our testing where we paint a whole range of surfaces without using a primer and it works perfectly.

Testing Concrete Without Primer

Painting Zinsser Allcoat on Concrete
Painting Zinsser Allcoat on Concrete

So let’s test some concrete. Can you paint it with AllCoat without primer? Again this is another yes! The AllCoat painted onto the concrete really well.

The coverage was also excellent and achieved the result in the image above with just a single coat of paint.

Allcoat After Adhesion Test
Allcoat After Adhesion Test

Next up I let the paint fully dry before testing how well it had stuck or adhered to the concrete. This is one area in that priming can make a difference with some paints.

I ran a rough cut piece of timber across the AllCoat with quite a lot of force, if there was any loose paint here this would be sure to find it.

The image above was taken after the test, so as you can clearly see it has definitely adhered very well.

Testing Plastic Without Primer

For this test, I had a little bit of uPVC facia board lying around. I thought this would make for a good test of painting plastic without primer and is a material that there is a good chance you might be using AllCoat on.


AllCoat On uPVC Facia Board
AllCoat On uPVC Fascia Board

in the image above you can see some Zinsser AllCoat painted onto plastic without primer. The AllCoat is the white paint in the above image.

It applied really easily and covered well, so a very positive start.

Testing Plastic Adhesion
Testing Plastic Adhesion

Next, I am going to see how well the paint has adhered (stuck) to the plastic. To do this I simply run a piece of tough cut timber across it with force.

If any of the paint has not properly stuck to the surface of the plastic then this is one sure-fire way to find it.

results of the adhesion to plastic test
results of the adhesion to plastic test

As you can see there is zero flaking, peeling or scuffing. So we can be sure that the paint has indeed stuck very well to the plastic without the need of a primer.

Testing Wood Without Primer

How are we so confident in our proclamation that you don’t need a primer with Zinsser AllCoat? Well, the simple answer is we tested it.

The first of these tests was on wood. We simply painted a few different types of wood without AllCoat without using primer.

The paint applied well to the wood without using a primer. A couple of coats were required to achieve full coverage so a primer may help you save some paint here but it is not essential.

More About AllCoat

Wanting to learn more about Zinsser AllCoat? Read our other articles below.

Is Zinsser AllCoat water based?

Can You Use Zinsser AllCoat on Concrete?

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Sam Wood

Wood by name, wood by nature. I am a fully qualified, time-served, award-winning joiner with an NVQ Level 3 in Carpentry and Joinery as well as an HNC in Construction. Beyond my joinery qualifications, I have also earned a degree in building surveying. I believe these qualifications make me perfectly positioned to provide expert advice on many different areas of DIY as well as share all of the tips I have picked up in over a decade working on building sites!

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