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Development of a yellow cast in aging paint, most noticeable in the dried films of white paints or clear varnishes.
  • Alkyd/oil based paints, because of their curing mechanism, tend to yellow, particularly in areas that are not exposed to sunlight.
  • Oil-based varnishes start with an amber cast and will darken with age.
  • Heat from stoves, radiators, and heating ducts.
  • Lack of light, for example, behind pictures or appliances and inside closets.
  • Tobacco staining or other environmental contaminants.
  • Moisture.
If there are no other problems and the yellowing is not offensive, repainting is not necessary.
Repainting using a latex paint will reduce the amount of yellowing, but if the environmental conditions that caused the previous coating to yellow continue, any new coating will likely yellow as well.