Exterior Painting: Tips for an Easy Transformation

So you’ve arrived to that dreaded point of your home’s life, where it’s time to give it that necessary fresh coat of paint. You may have spotted areas where wear and tear have really taken a toll on the surface, and you hate to consider that the problems may go deeper than that. We know that for most homeowners, painting the exterior of their home is not a favorite on the list of homeowner responsibilities. This is usually because of all the hassle that comes along with the task, but we’re here with some good news. Painting the exterior of your home actually can be simplified and might not be so bad with these valuable tips in your tool belt.

We understand that often homeowners will find painting businesses to take over the job, in which case these tips may still be worth the run through. In some cases, painting crews will give an estimate and then work hastily to get the job done as quickly as possible, which can leave room for error. This is not to discredit any painting services but in the case of your beautiful home, we as homeowners have a responsibility to care for this large investment and take the time to cover all the bases. If small things are skipped over it can cause larger problems to arise over time, and in turn cost the homeowner more than what may have originally spent if they had caught these issues from the get-go. This will all make more sense once we break down each point.

If you are the brave souls who are doing this all on your own time and dime and have no prior exterior painting experience, than these tips will come of great value to your new endeavor. Many of these steps are what the professionals stick to for a quality paint job.

1. Find the Right Time to Paint


Mother nature plays a huge role in when you should be painting your house. Paint needs time to dry and unfortunately, you have to rely on a pretty unpredictable factor to find the right weather window to allow enough drying time. Paint simply will not adhere properly to a wet surface, so check out the weather and look for a chunks of days where rain is not in the forecast and also for days with lower humidity. This will help ensure a smooth exterior painting venture. Also you do not want to apply paint if it has recently rained or if you have recently power washed your home. Trapping any sort of moisture underneath your layers of paint is the perfect recipe for wood rot, which can be costly down the road.

2. Choose the Right Color + Quality of Paint


This may be a trial and error process, but we can assure that it will be worth the time and efforts. Nobody wants to get stuck with the wrong color or put into a position where they have to repaint sooner than they should have to. We highly recommend getting samples of the colors you are considering because colors can look very different once they are covering your entire home. We have seen many cases where colors were not tested and turned out drastically different than the swatch. One scenario that always comes to mind is the beige swatch that turned into silly putty pink, and a redo just wasn’t in budget. So although it can be joked about now, it was quite a shock initially and a few years down the road for the next paint job felt like a lifetime. Moral of the story: always get a sample and test it out on the back of your home.

As for the quality of the paint, you should not skimp, even if the price tag is a little higher. Not only will your paint last longer, but it will have better coverage. Although the cheaper route may be tempting, over the course of time the higher quality paint will save you time and money. Another way to assure the durability of your paint is to get the right primer or find a quality brand that has primer mixed in already.

3. Prep All the Surfaces


Making sure your surfaces are well prepared is key to a successful exterior paint job. Paint simply does not adhere well to rough or dirty surfaces. A go-to method for most homes is a good power wash to get all the dirt and grime off of the surface. Now although this may be what many professionals turn to, it can be detrimental to the surface of your home if not done properly. There are many precautions to consider before you power wash or spray your home. Check out this resource for a detailed guide on washing the surface of your home. If your home is older, has cedar wood siding, or older brick, take caution that the washing process may be more tedious. High pressures can cause holes in older or softer materials and can cause much larger problems.

After you have cleansed the surface, you will then need to inspect for holes, wood rot, or rough patches that need repairs. Often for small holes or rough patches you can turn to a combination of wood hardener and wood filler to solve the problem. In other cases though this simply will not suffice and you will need to replace the siding or portion of material to avoid future issues. Again, these problems must be attended to to avoid trapped moisture and additional expenses down the road.

4. Mix it All Together

A trick of the trade for assuring their is no differentiation in color is to take all the cans of paint and put them together into a larger container. This will help ensure that the exterior painting is uniform because we all know that no one wants a ombre house, no matter how stylish it may be in the fashion world.

5. Roof to Ground Application


If you’ll be doing the painting, be sure to work from the top to bottom. By working with gravity you can avoid drips and streaks that would occur if you were to start from the ground up. Stick to this tip and you’ll be golden with a smooth and even application of paint.

6. Consider Other Surfaces


If along with the exterior of your home you have other painted surfaces, such as your porch floor, consider adding texture for safety. Smooth painted surfaces can become slippery and hazardous, especially if rain is added into the equation. You have some options to maintain the color and durability of the paint while eliminating the potential danger. An easy fix is to add fine sand into the mix, but you can also explore other textured materials that manufacturers have begun to provide. Either way, this is an important tip to consider.

Feel like you’re ready to dive into this “exciting” adventure? We sure hope so. By removing room for error with these valuable tips, we hope that you won’t have to refer back to this list for many years. Stay tuned for exterior paint color trends which are both in-style and classy so they’ll stand the test of time as you will have no need to repaint for quite some time.

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