Paint mixed in store vs direct

25 Oct 2014
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United Kingdom
Ok apologies in advance as this may be a stupid question but is there any difference getting paint mixed from a local shop rather than buying it direct from the manufacturer such as Little Greene or Benjamin Moore? In the shop for example does the machine type, age or maintenance & cleaning of it have any bearing on the colour shade it produces? Or is there not a possibility the shade produced is slightly off due to contamination from the previous colour it was mixing?

Also, is it usually a single machine that does all paint brands e.g. F&B, LG, Ben Moore?
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My local decorators' merchant has three different mixing machines. One for Leyland paints, one for Dulux, one for F&B (or is it little greene?)

Each of the pigment dispensers has its own nozzle, so cross contamination can be ruled out.

Although, I am a decorator, I don't recall purchasing paint directly from a manufacturer.
The Machines can mix to a different hue, from the same machine or shops. if you read the instructions it says mix two or more tins together so that all tins will be the same colour.
So yes there is a difference.
All tins from manufacturer will be the same.
If there is concern about minor colour variations on paint, so long as you paint a wall from the same tin, it should be fine. The wall in this case would be a single continuous flat surface. If an adjacent wall, such as one on the other side of a corner, is painted with a different tin, even if the colour varies slightly, it will still work out fine. If the colour varies on the same flat surface, that won't work.
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The calibration of machines can be different in each store. So mixed colours can be different by a tiny amount

Different bases like Matt or durable matt can look a bit different even though it's same colour. Sheen effects colour.

Testers can look different to to the mixed colours because of the small amount mixed.

It's a minefield and caused me problems over the years. I try avoid getting involved.

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