DRYLOK, a specialty line of paint products from United Gilsonite Laboratories, offers a means to block moisture from getting through brick, concrete block and similar materials. It's ideal for basements, foundations and areas occasionally prone to excessive moisture. While this coating comes in a handful of colors and does not require additional paints, you can paint over DRYLOK with latex or acrylic paints once the underlying coats have dried.
The DRYLOK Difference
Although several types of paint can be used on brick, masonry or cinder blocks, they usually require application of a primer to help the paint adhere. DRYLOK, on the other hand, serves as it own all-in-one paint and primer. It is specifically designed to be absorbed into the project surface and, once dry, prevent moisture from passing through the paint. It works for both interior and exterior surfaces.
The original DRYLOK formula blocks the hydrostatic pressure equivalent of a 22-foot wall of water, while DRYLOK Extreme withstands the pressure of a 33-foot-high wall of water. Both of these paints are specifically designed for moisture proofing, while many other paints are not. DRYLOCK also blocks moisture in a way that it does not become trapped within the painted material.
One other major difference between DRYLOK and other paints that adhere to brick is that DRYLOCK is only meant for concrete-like surfaces, including stucco, terra cotta, brick, masonry walls and cinder block. Do not use DRYLOCK on drywall, wood or metal, as it may not adhere properly or block moisture.
Applying Paint Over DRYLOK
DRYLOK readily accepts latex or acrylic paints once the DRYLOK itself is dry. It can be used as a base coat or primer for other paints, for instance, if you prefer a shade not available in any of the DRYLOK products.
Wait at least 24 hours before painting over fresh DRYLOK, as this allows for ample drying time. Any acrylic or latex paint works well atop DRYLOK. For a durable finish, select a paint that has at least a medium level of glossiness, as the more glossy the finish, the easier it is to wash without damaging the paint.
If painting over the original DRYLOK, keep in mind that it has a bit of a sandy texture that may still be felt through a coat of a different paint. An additional coat of your chosen paint will make the texture less obvious.
DRYLOK as the Only Paint
There is no need to paint over DRYLOK with another product. The original DRYLOK formula is available in blue, white, gray and beige, as well as a handful of additional tints. DRYLOK Extreme is offered in white, with additional tints such as mint green and a light pink. The extreme formulation has a smoother texture, so it's the better choice if you prefer a smooth wall finish.
Paint a minimum of two coats of DRYLOK on drywall or onto another project surface for the paint to function as intended. Allow several hours of drying time between coats if using DRYLOK and no additional types of paint on the surface.
Kathy Adams is an award-winning writer. She is an avid DIYer that is equally at home repurposing random objects into new, useful creations as she is at supporting community gardening efforts and writing about healthy alternatives to household chemicals. She's written numerous DIY articles for paint and decor companies, as well as for Black + Decker, Hunker, SFGate, Landlordology and others.