Painting Rules to Follow for an Easier Job

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Exterior painting is the fastest, most cost-effective, and most protective home repair option available. It also revitalizes, beautifies, and protects a house. 

A fresh coat of paint can significantly change your home’s appearance. Even though painting a house can be a major task, it can be finished in a week or two.

According to HomeAdvisor, hiring a professional painter will cost approximately $3,073 for a 1,500-square-foot home. And it might be up to $13,000 for a larger home.

Making it a DIY project allows you to cut costs on labor, which often makes up over half of the total cost. But be aware that painting your house will require a lot of work.

You’ll want this project completed well, so you don’t have to repeat it in a few years, whether you work with a contractor or do it yourself. Here are ten exterior home painting guidelines you should go by in light of this, according to USN:

  • Don’t scrimp on the supplies.
  • Make the required preparations.
  • Watch out for lead paint.
  • Put on several coats of paint.
  • Use the appropriate tools.
  • Be sensible.
  • Wait until it’s mild outside.
  • Cover all other bases.
  • Paint with tried-and-true methods.
  • Get quotes and references before hiring a professional.

Don’t scrimp on the supplies.

Spend money on premium paint, primer, and caulking material. Superior paint flows, covers, and lasts longer than inferior paint. Purchase paint that comes with a lifetime warranty against finish flaws.

You get what you pay for when it comes to most home paint, and the best materials cost more. Costs for premium exterior paint range from $35 to $40 per gallon and may even cost up to $80 per gallon. Make sure to select acrylic paint alone.

Prominent exterior paint products include Behr Premium Plus or Ultra exterior paint, Clark + Kensington exterior paint, and Benjamin Moore Aura exterior paint, all of which cost above $75 per gallon and range in price from $40 to $60 per gallon, respectively.

Flat treatments, which are chosen for siding, are effective at concealing flaws and imperfections. For trim, satin and semi-gloss enamels are more enduring and simpler to clean.

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Make the required preparations.

Applying paint to a clean, dry surface and not flaking or peeling will ensure that it adheres effectively. This frequently necessitates significant sanding and scraping before painting, depending on the state of the existing siding and trim.

Clean the surfaces first. A pressure washer or hose with water and detergent can also be used. When using a pressure washer, take care not to damage the surface of the wood with the high-pressure water spray or push water deeply into the siding joints.

You’ll need a scraper to get rid of flaking, loose paint. A 5-inch disc power sander or a random-orbit sander will work well to remove more challenging paint and smooth the surface. Sandpaper in the 60-grit and 100-grit grades should be used in that order.

The goal is to simply remove any loose paint and smooth the surface—not to altogether remove the paint. Next, fill holes and cracks using wood filler and a putty knife. Sand these areas once more after letting the filler dry. 

Before applying primer, sweep off all of the dust, caulk the joints, and let the caulk dry.

Watch out for lead paint.

Although lead is not present in modern home paints, lead was probably present in paint that was applied before 1978. 

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency advises that any lead paint-related home remodeling project has the potential to produce lead dust or chips that are dangerous to both children’s and adults’ health.

The EPA advises contacting a nearby lead-safe certified remodeling contractor, which may be contacted through the EPA’s website, for lead testing and removal.

Put on several coats of paint.

If you’re painting over raw wood or metal, start with a high-quality alkyd primer for your base coat. This will assist in preventing bleeding and will be mentioned on the paint package.

To reduce the need for two finish coats of paint, some painters prefer to tint the primer toward the final paint color. In addition, some people like to add a contrasting color to the primer to highlight any areas that the final coats didn’t entirely cover.

Apply the first finish coat following the primer. Then, apply a second top coat after it becomes tacky.

Use the appropriate tools.

Utilize top-notch brushes, rollers, and, for some homes, airless sprayers, all of which may be hired at the majority of home improvement stores or tool rental shops. 

The simplest method for applying primer and paint to textured surfaces is to use an airless sprayer to spray it on, followed by a hand-rolled back-roll to guarantee adhesion.

If this is your first time using an airless sprayer, pay close attention to the instructions and gain some practice by painting a side of the home that won’t draw notice. Utilize a paint strainer to prevent paint from clogging the sprayer while you work from a 5-gallon paint bucket.

Be sensible.

If you don’t have the necessary time, resources, expertise, and energy, don’t attempt to paint your house yourself. Getting ready and painting a house on your own can be a tedious, challenging task depending on the size, height, and state of the current siding.

Wait until it’s mild outside.

Avoid painting on hot days, in the rain, or when it’s windy. 50 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit are the ideal range for painting.

The paint dries too quickly in hot weather and in direct sunlight. Wait for the shade if at all feasible. Lower than 50 degrees may prevent the paint from properly bonding to the surface. Surfaces can bubble due to moisture or dew.

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Cover all other bases.

Use drop cloths or plastic sheeting to cover sidewalks, patios, gardens, bushes, and patios to prevent paint splatters and spills. 

You’ll avoid significant cleanup issues later on by doing this. Masking and covering are essential if you use an airless paint sprayer because overspray can even coat your neighbors’ cars.

Paint with tried-and-true methods.

Do your research if you’re new to painting. Online resources offer a wealth of free information, including expert-produced films that break down procedures into simple steps.

To prevent fresh paint from dripping onto freshly painted surfaces, start at the top with overhangs. After the siding has dried, tape off the areas around the windows and doors, then paint the trim. 

Painter’s tape or masking tape should be removed as soon as you are through painting the trim to prevent leftovers. Touch up any areas where paint hasn’t completely coated the surface after it has dried.

Get bids and references before hiring a professional.

Ask at least three painters for thorough quotes and ask for the names and contact information of happy clients. Make contact with two or three of those clients or, if you can, go to their residences to check the quality of the work. 

You may identify local experts and read reviews from prior clients using networks like Angi, HomeAdvisor, Fixr, Google, and Yelp.