Best Water-Based Undercoat Paint

Updated May 16, 2024 | Posted Dec 30, 2023 | Professional insight, Product Advice | 0 comments

Water-based undercoat paint products and adhesion primers are being used more regularly in decorating. Some people use water-based undercoat before applying an oil-based topcoat. Other people use what they think is the best water-based undercoat for any water- or oil-based topcoat, no matter the finish or brand.

Rightly so too! Water-based paint technology has come a long way in recent years. Now you can get a water-based product that has superior opacity and adhesion to any oil-based paint. Plus, it’s quick drying, easier to use, and is better for the environment.

You do need to choose one of the modern undercoats though, otherwise you may experience issues. As a professional Decorator, I have tried and tested just about every undercoat on the market. The products that were launched over the past year or so (at the time of writing this blog), far outperform the older ones.

I thought I’d take a little bit of time to sit down and list three of the very best water-based undercoat paints on the market. I hope this helps.


Zinsser BIN Aqua

Zinsser BIN Aqua is a new water-based primer and undercoat, designed to be capable of almost anything. It adheres well to old oil-based coatings and other difficult surfaces. It also blocks stains such as tannins and even stop knot bleed.

You’ll find Zinsser BIN Aqua more than capable as an undercoat for pretty much any topcoat. It’s easy to use and has great opacity. It can be used inside and out too.

You should apply two coats when painting bare timber to block the sap bleed and tannins, but one coat over previously painted surfaces is ample.

Tin of Zinsser BIN Aqua, which is a water-based primer / undercoat

Bedec All Prime

Bedec All Prime is the cheaper alternative, but it is just as capable. Like Zinsser BIN Aqua, this undercoat and primer can be used inside or out, and over old oil-based paint coatings with ease. It’s a little bit thinner, so it’s slightly more difficult to strike a straight line with a brush. However, this is the only downside.

Bedec All Prime also contains rust inhibitors, meaning it’s a good water-based undercoat for metal, or exterior wood with nails in it.

Bedec All Prime Water-Based Primer and Undercoat

HB42 PS2

HB42 PS2 is another modern water-based primer and undercoat that can be used inside or out. It’s gone under the radar a little bit, but it’s a product I use a lot and really rate. The opacity is amazingl! You can just about achieve a full colour change in one coat, which is unreal!

This is the only water-based undercoat on this list that only comes in white. But, as far as performance goes, it’s easily one of the best on the market.

You’ll find it quick and easy to use, seems to go for miles, and makes the perfect base for any topcoat.

HB42 PS2 Primer, Sealer Stain Block

Updated May 16, 2024 | Posted Dec 30, 2023 | 0 comments

About the Author

About the Author

Mike Cupit has been in the decorating industry since 2002 and has mostly worked as a Trade Decorator in the domestic sector (peoples’ homes). Self-proclaimed “product geek”, Mike has a passion for paint and decorating tools. Mike now spends most of his time testing paint products and tools, comparing them to similar products on the market, and blogging about the industry in general.


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