What Causes Interior Paint to Peel?


Available in a number of colors and types, interior paint helps coordinate walls with the color of furniture and accessories in a specific room or area. Paint also lets you hide imperfections on walls and make a space look larger. But the substance fades over time due to natural and artificial light. Paint also cracks and peels. Peeling paint is not only unattractive, but also frustrating to fix.


  • One cause of interior paint peeling is moisture collecting beneath and on top of the paint. Moisture comes from a variety of sources including humidity entering a room or area; water droplets on windows; moisture entering through poorly caulked windows and doors; a leaky roof; from a sink, shower, bathtub or other water source; from inside air conditioning ducts; and through the foundation of a home or business.

Not Preparing Wallboards

  • If the wallboard underneath the paint didn't undergo a preparation process, the new layer of paint will start peeling. Failure to clean dirt, grease and debris from the wallboard; filling in cracks; and sanding the walls as well as applying primer leads to the top layer of paint peeling.


  • As interior paint ages, it starts to become hard and brittle and loses its adhesion ability. Eventually the paint begins to peel. The strips of peeling paint vary in size and may not happen on all walls.

Multiple Layers of Paint

  • Applying multiple layers of paint on top of older layers also causes interior paint to peel. As cracks start to form underneath the layers of paint, the cracks loosen the top layer of paint and cause it to peel.

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  • Photo Credit peeling paint image by Ruta Saulyte from Fotolia.com
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