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Wednesday, 29 August 2012

How to Paint Your Home’s Exterior the Right Way

When preparing to paint the exterior of your house, there are 2 basic things to remember before you start your project.

1.            Make sure to prepare the walls so that the paint adheres properly
2.            Buy the best paint available that you can afford.

Tips To Help You

·          Do a quick check to see if all you need to do is clean the surface. You can do this by cleaning a small spot (1 foot by 1 foot should do) and then let it dry. The next day paint that area and let it dry. The next day, take a piece of sticky tape and put it on the painted area and then tear it off immediately. If the paint comes away with the tape, you will need to take your exterior down to the bare wall.
·         If the old paint is cracking or peeling, get the old paint off. Don't even try to paint over it.
·         Be sure to select the right type of paint for your house. If its wood siding, buy wood paint. If its metal siding, buy metal paint. Be sure the paint is an exterior paint.
·        Mask everything that is not being painted with tape and heavy plastic drop clothes. This saves you a lot of time trying to clean spots of paint off windows and trim.

If you DID NOT have to strip the Exterior Paint
If you have spots where the wood or paint is uneven, fix them now. Feather any small uneven spots. Wait until you add primer to fix any spots with filler.  Sand all the paint so there are no shiny areas. Dig out all that old caulk and make sure there are no edges left from the caulk. Wash the house with water and a wire brush (not a steel or iron brush as these can leave residue).

Put a good quality primer on the exterior of your house. This is what bonds the paint to the house so be sure you spend the money and get the best. The first coat of primer will show all the flaws you missed, so be sure that you inspect your work carefully. Fill with exterior filler, every crack, hole or any other flaw. Let it dry and then sand it smooth. Wipe everything down with a damp rag to get rid of any dust. Caulk everything. Add a second primer coat and let it dry. Always use the manufacturer's recommendations on drying times.
If you DID have to strip the Exterior Paint
You have got your work cut out for you. Start by vigorously scraping with a putty knife. Get as much as you can possibly get off this way. Scrape out old caulk. Patch any spots you see at this point. Let it dry and sand until its smooth. Two cups of bleach and two cups of trisodium phosphate in four gallons of water should clean any mold and mildew that has lodged itself on your house. There are also house cleaning solutions available. Be sure to read the directions. Spray the house and scrub with a wire brush, again not steel or iron. Let the solution set for 1/2 hour and then rinse with water. DO NOT USE A POWER WASHER, it will damage wood and will blow water in where ever you have taken the caulk out.

If you are working with wood, paint with good paintable water repellant. This keeps moisture out of the wood. Again, buy quality water repellant. Make sure that it contains a mold and mildew preventative/killer. Let this dry for a couple of warm and sunny days before you do anything else.

Now add a quality alkyd primer which will help to preserve wood or a metal exterior primer if you are working with metal. Let this dry and then caulk everything with a good silicone (paintable) acrylic latex caulk. Let everything dry according to the manufacturer's directions. Paint second coat of primer (for wood) with a acrylic latex primer. Let it dry. Now you are ready to paint.

Painting Your House
Use the correct type of brush. If you are using a water-based paint, use a nylon or polyester brush. If you are using an oil-base paint, use a natural bristle brush. Spraying the paint on your house may seem like the easy way to go, but 1/2 the paint goes into the air and your lungs. It is very hard to make a paint sprayer paint evenly and you usually wind up with runs in the paint.

Don't paint when the temperature is below 50° or above 90° and a nice sunny day. Make sure the temperature is going to be that way for 24 hours. Start painting from the top of your house and go down, smooth out drips along the way down. Start painting on the side of the house in the early morning that the sun is going to touch in the late morning. Follow the sun around the house, giving yourself time to get the side painted before the sun touches it. Quit painting for the day 2 hours before sundown, otherwise you may have moisture issues.
Apply 2 coats of paint no more than 2 weeks apart. If it is more than 2 weeks you will need to scrub the paint with the wire brush and water again.

Preparation and time spent up front will save you in the long run. As the experts in providing kithomes and granny flats, good finishes in our designs is paramount. 

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