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Review: Kilz General Purpose Primer & Sealer

Purpose: The job required a primer to seal the drywall compound in a business we were  painting. The drywall damage was extensive as the job required over a full 13.5L pail of Synko Dust Control Drywall Compound.  From my experience, if you don’t seal the drywall compound after sanding it will “flash” through the finish coats.

The cost of Drywall Primers has been rising  so I decided to search for a more affordable alternative. I think I’ve discovered a good option called  Kilz General Purpose Primer & Sealer…It is a water-based primer/sealer with a relatively low VOC content. The odor is minimal which can be an important factor when occupants have sensitivities to such products.

Kilz has been an industry leader in Oil based blocking primers for decades. In recent years they have upped their game and formulated excellent water-based primers too. Their Kilz Max line is as good as any water-based primer on the market. That is their high end, premium line. This review is about their more affordable option called Kilz General Purpose Primer & Sealer. There are times when you require the best primers for wood substrates and other occasions when you just need a good all purpose sealer for drywall.

Synko DUST CONTROL Drywall Compound, Ready Mixed, 13.5 L Pail

12L Dust Control Compound

Application: We applied the Kilz primer with a 15 mm lint free roller sleeve. It rolled beautifully and didn’t splatter.  The primer was tinted to the color of the finish coat and it covered very well.

Conclusion: Kilz General Purpose Primer is a definite thumbs up! It performed as well as some of  the more expensive primer/sealers I’ve used and at a much lower cost per gallon.

The only downside in my view is that I prefer an architectural coating with Zero or Ultra Low VOC's.  Kilz  General Purpose has 95 g/l which is still well within acceptable limits. The market today doesn't have many zero VOC options for drywall primer/sealers.  I'm sure that will change in the near future. In fact, their Kilz Max line has only 75g/l

Architectural coatings in Canada cannot exceed 150g/l of  Voc content

The Kilz primer was purchased at Home Depot but other stores like Rona, for instance,  carries it as well.


Coverage:  300 sq feet per gallon

Voc’s: 95g/l

Price: $16.97 per Gallon ($76.37 for a 5 Gallon pail)

This review of Kilz General Purpose Primer & Sealer was written by Ted Rinshed of Eco Star Painting. Eco Star Painting is based in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.

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