Can you still paint road markings in the winter?

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Posted by jask Media on 21 April 2022

Are you wondering “Can you still paint road markings in the winter?” If so, you’re not alone. Many people are asking this question right now, concerned they’ve left it too late in the year to apply line markings. Fortunately, we can often still apply them during the winter months, as long as the roads remain dry. Read on to find out more.

Can road markings be applied in the winter?

Whilst we can apply line markings in the winter months, this is only usually the case if the roads are dry. Winter can be a difficult time of year for applying road markings. The rain, snow, and ice, can make painting them extremely challenging, and in most cases, impossible. If you need to apply road markings in winter, discuss your requirements with a local white lining contractor. At Road Marking Services, we can still apply road markings in Sheffield and Leeds at this time of year, as long as surface conditions are dry. 

The trouble with applying road markings in winter

The problem with applying line markings in winter is the level of moisture in the air and on the roads. At this time of year, the ambient temperature drops and the air becomes much more humid. This can affect the quality of the lines applied to the roads. What’s even more damaging than the damp, cold air is the rain, which can often become heavy during the winter months. 

Road markings should never be applied when it’s been raining, sleeting or snowing. The materials won’t bond with the surface when it’s wet, defeating the purpose of applying them at all. Adding markings to a wet surface will essentially mean they become diluted. The moisture present on the road and also in the air will affect the finished quality of the markings, impacting their appearance and longevity. 

The road needs to be dry before attempting to add the markings. In some cases, forced drying can be carried out using a gas torch or thermal lance. Forced drying involves speeding up the drying of the surface using a moderate heat of up to 150°F. 

Using a damp meter to check surface moisture

Since the ground should be dry to apply road markings, it’s a good idea to use a damp meter (also known as a moisture meter) to check the moisture content of the surface. A damp meter can measure the percentage of water in the substrate, helping you to establish if it’s too wet to apply line markings.

A damp meter works by providing readings based on how easily a small electric current passes between the two electrode pins when pushed into the subject material (the road surface in this case). The easier the current flows through them, the wetter the material is. Even if it’s not raining at the time you want to apply the road markings, the surface may still be too wet for the work to be carried out. 

Can line removal take place in winter?

Whilst we sometimes can’t apply line markings in winter due to the bad weather conditions, line removal is a different story. Line removal can take place in all weathers, even when it’s raining outside. Winter is a great time to remove any road markings that you don’t want or need anymore. At Road Marking Services, we use specialist techniques and equipment to remove a wide range of line markings. We use a process known as ‘hydroblasting’, which uses high-pressure water jets to eliminate line markings with total precision. Line removal may be required if traffic layouts have changed or if general wear and tear of the markings means that relining is necessary.  

Should I wait until Spring to apply road markings? 

Now you know the answer to “Can you still paint road markings in the winter?”, you may be wondering if you should delay your project. Since the weather can have such a major impact on road markings, some people do choose to wait until Spring to hire a white lining contractor. Although, this may not be necessary depending on the weather conditions. If precipitation levels are low, there’s a good chance that we can apply your roading markings.

To find out if your road marking project can go ahead, talk to our team. We’ll be able to provide the expert advice that you need. In some cases, we may be able to work around the weather to apply road markings in winter, making sure they are finished to an impeccable standard despite the extra moisture in the air at this time of year.   

Road markings in Sheffield and Leeds

If you need road markings in Sheffield or Leeds, look no further than Road Marking Services. We’ve been applying line markings throughout Yorkshire and across the UK for many years, establishing ourselves as a leader in our field. We can apply markings on major or minor roads as well as to create parking spaces in car parks. There’s no job too big or small for our experienced team to handle. You can rest assured that we’ll apply line markings to the highest possible standards. We regularly work with both local councils and private companies throughout the region. 

Contact us 

If you’re still wondering “Can you still paint road markings in the winter?”, why not get in touch? Call us on 0800 086 2509 and we’ll be happy to provide you with further information about our services. You can also send us a message via the website and we’ll contact you as soon as we can. We can apply road markings in Sheffield and Leeds all year round depending on the weather conditions.


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All of our work is fully guaranteed and we as a company always make sure that you are happy with the completed work before we leave. We undertake all types of marking work from small one-off car parks to contracts that require regular work.

Available 7 days a week 0800 086 2509