Primer Vs Dehydrator

When it comes to prepping surfaces for painting, primer and dehydrator are two popular choices. Both are designed to help paint adhere and last longer, but they work in different ways. In this article, we’ll explore the differences between primer and dehydrator, and help you decide which one is right for your next paint project.


Primer is a type of paint that’s designed to go on before the topcoat. It’s a thick, opaque substance that’s applied in a thin layer to prepare the surface for painting. Primer is typically used to cover up imperfections, seal porous surfaces, and create a uniform base for the topcoat.

There are many different types of primer, each designed for specific surfaces and paint types. For example, there are primers for metal, wood, concrete, and drywall. You can also find primers that are specifically designed for use with oil-based or water-based paints.

Using primer has several benefits. First, it provides a uniform surface that makes it easier to apply the topcoat. Second, it can help hide imperfections, such as cracks or stains. And third, it can improve the adhesion and longevity of the topcoat, helping it last longer and avoid chipping or peeling.


Dehydrator, also known as a surface prep solvent, is a liquid that’s applied to surfaces before painting. Unlike primer, which is a thick substance that covers imperfections and creates a uniform surface, dehydrator is designed to clean and prep the surface for painting.

Dehydrator works by removing any oils, dirt, or contaminants from the surface. It’s especially useful for painting surfaces that are prone to contamination, such as plastic or metal. By removing these contaminants, dehydrator can improve the adhesion of the paint, making it last longer and avoid chipping or peeling.

Dehydrator is typically used in combination with a primer or topcoat, rather than on its own. By cleaning and prepping the surface, dehydrator helps the primer or topcoat adhere better and last longer.

Primer vs. Dehydrator: Which is Better?

So, which is better: primer or dehydrator? As with so many things in life, the answer depends on the specific situation. Here are some factors to consider:

Surface Type – Some surfaces, such as metal, may require a primer to help the paint adhere and last longer. Other surfaces, such as plastic, may benefit more from a dehydrator to remove any contaminants that could affect paint adhesion.

Paint Type – Different types of paint may require different types of primer or surface prep. For example, oil-based paints may require an oil-based primer, while water-based paints may require a water-based primer.

Time – Priming is typically more time-consuming than using a dehydrator. Depending on the size of the surface and the type of primer used, it may take several hours or even a full day for the primer to dry and fully cure. Dehydrator, on the other hand, is typically applied and allowed to dry for a few minutes before painting.

Quality – Both primer and dehydrator can improve the adhesion and longevity of paint, but a good primer is often considered the gold standard for long-lasting, high-quality paint jobs. If you’re looking for the best possible results, investing in a high-quality primer may be the way to go.

In conclusion, both primer and dehydrator have their place in the world of painting. It’s up to the painter to decide which product is best for their specific project. By considering the surface type, paint type, time, and desired quality, you can choose the product that will help you achieve the best possible results. And remember, always follow the manufacturer’s instructions and safety guidelines when using primers and dehydrators.