What is the difference between Luminous and Fluorescent Paints?

22nd October 2013

What is the difference between Luminous and Fluorescent Paints?

Both these paints are used as visual aids but they are used in different ways for different purposes. Make sure you get the right one – read on.

Luminous Paint
This is a special paint that comes in a light green colour. Once on the surface with the special undercoat, the paint ‘charges up’ when light is available. When lights fail, for example, in a power cut, the surface will glow in the dark for a limited time which could help people find their out of the building. It is therefore ideal for use in enclosed areas to identify exits in case of emergency.

Fluorescent Paint
This paint is the ideal way to identify hazards. It is a high visibility paint that comes in 5 colours. It works by converting UV light into visible light and is also reflective. For example, it will shine bright when car headlights shine onto the paint on a skip. Fluorescent paint will always appear brighter than adjacent non fluorescent colours, highlighting hazards, fire fighting equipment, emergency exits, etc. Please note that this will not show any benefit in darkness without light shining on it. If you need this, use Luminous Paint.

Note – both of these paints work best as a two or three paint system along with a foundation base and a clear protective coat for high wear or exterior environments.

The clear coat is an absolute necessity for exterior applications, both products will have a tendency to fade outside and the clear will slow down this fading process. The maintenance schedule for the Fluorescent paint externally is likely to be a 6-12 month re-painting cycle.

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