Heat Vs. Acrylic Paint: What Happens When Temperatures Rise?

Hey! Are you worried about your Acrylic painting? Are you wondering at what temperature can acrylic paint withstand? If yes, let’s find out together which would be the most suitable temperature for your acrylic painting.

What Temperature Can Acrylic Paint Withstand?

The temperature range exists between 60 F -75 F (16C – 26C). This is the stable room temperature for storing paintings with acrylic paints.

Also, according to my experience, there is a range of temperatures between which your acrylic paintings never get damaged by the temperature changes in the surrounding environment.

Well, another question that might cross your mind might be ‘Are all acrylic paints or paintings stable at room temperature or not?’

 No, all the paintings do not remain stable on room temperature as it might be low for some kinds of paintings.

Let’s compare oil-based painting and water-based painting as acrylic paint is water-based so it needs a constant temperature to keep itself stable on the paint film. But the oil painting can be painted or used when the temperature is at 45C & 7C. If the temperature rises or falls from here on, it might not be an appropriate environment to do or put your oil painting there.

Can You Use Acrylic Paint In The Scorching Sunlight?

what temperature can acrylic paint withstand

If you have painted in scorching sunlight in the past, then you would know that sunlight did affect your painting; as the very hot environment may cause the painting to dry very quickly before you completely and perfectly finish your painting. Acrylic paints are water-based, and it has a very fast drying capacity. So, when water-based acrylic painting is used under the exposure of sunlight, then the water in the paint quickly evaporates, and the painting quickly dries out.

But in the case of oil-based painting, in hot surroundings or in the sunlight, oil painting colors can converse, and the changes can happen both in the intrinsic structure and in your visual color and texture. So, it’s bad to store oil-based paintings in the sunlight or hot temperatures.

Is it true that acrylic painting can be damaged in the sunlight temperature of 16-26C or not?

Are you confused about whether your paintings will start to melt down if exposed to the sunlight directly? Don’t worry your acrylic painting cannot get melted until the temperature range reaches (320 F) or (160 C). It can become soft or soft at high temperatures but does not melt.

Melting can occur when the temperature rises from 320 F. Acrylic paints are somehow heat resistant; but one of the types of acrylic paint; acrylic latex is more resilient to heat or high temperatures.

On high temperatures, the layers behind and on the surface may quickly dry out and which may result in a rough paint finish; brush marks may remain on the paint film. The paint film that results, in the end, may not be balanced and attractive; looks like a rough painting.

If you put or hang your painting in the car and the outside temperature is hot, then your acrylic paint might get softer; so, then it may damage your painting; so you need to keep your painting at constant room temperature for good results of paint film after drying.

Do Acrylic Paintings Really Start To Melt Up In The Sun?

Acrylic painting is water-based, but it does not mean that it gets damaged when the temperature range is in between (16-26 C) or (60 – 80 F); it quickly dries out but serious damage does not occur because mostly when the canvas is exposed to direct sunlight then UV rays come in contact with its fabric and can damage it but mostly colors withstand the temperature.

No doubt, some colors are not capable of enduring that temperature range; but they can be protected if you coat the acrylic painting with the UV light-enduring varnishes.

Can Temperature Below The Low Range Or Does The Freezing Point Affect The Acrylic Paint?

So, let’s clear this ambiguity; whether the cold temperature affects your acrylic paint or not. Well! Everything has its temperature enduring limits. So, if you move beyond or above the limits; the damage or other effects might occur.

On freezing temperatures, the water-based acrylic paint cannot be dried as quickly as it should be. Because the water vapors will not evaporate quickly, and it will delay the time of dryness of every layer of your paint film. You must have to be patient when there is cold weather in your surroundings.

According to some research, cold weather may result in the formation of microscopic Ice crystals in the paint film of acrylic paints and can cause brittle paint film. Low- temperature can also cause the paint to become thicker; paint thickens, and it takes too much time to get it dry and it may not properly dry because of the thickness. Some researchers also recommend that it is too risky to store your acrylic painting below 40 F or 4C.

Can Humidity Have An Effect On Acrylic Painting?

Humidity and temperature extremes are like an enemy of your acrylic painting’s perfect finish. When there is high humidity in the environment, acrylic painting layers remain wet and cannot properly dry out.

I would like to recommend you some precautions as per my experience which would prove a bit beneficial for you at the end of the day (I hope!). 

  • Keep your acrylics in a constant temperature (16-26C) and at some a place with low humidity.
  • Always have a look at the forecast before painting acrylics.
  • Prevent your acrylic paintings from direct sunlight exposure and use UV protecting varnishes if possible.


So, the crux of this topic discussion is acrylic paint can withstand the temperature till 320 F and does not melt below this extreme. For what temperature can acrylic paint withstand, keep them in the 60 F to 75 F temperature range so your paintings may not be damaged. Always avoid storing acrylic painting in below or above the temperature range we have talked about and take care of humidity level.

Happy Painting! 🙂