Before starting an outdoor painting project, take the weather into account. Preparing for an exterior paint job involves just a few simple steps—pressure washing, sanding, spackling and priming—but many people neglect to account for outdoor conditions before they begin the process. For example, taking on a large painting job during winter poses a lot of risks. Primarily, it takes longer for wood or paint to dry in cold temperatures. Also, when you pressure wash a house, you introduce moisture into the wood that needs to be completely dried out before a coat of primer can be applied. While it only takes 24 hours for wood to dry during the summer, it can take up to 72 hours in winter weather. For these and other reasons, painting the exterior of your home is best left for the spring, summer or early fall.
Many homeowners save the paint that’s left over from an exterior project in anticipation of future touch-up work. Proper storage is vital when it comes to saving paint, and the best procedure involves only two steps: Ensure the paint is sealed in an airtight container and store it in an area that’s impervious to extreme temperatures (a garage is usually OK). If paint is properly stored, it’s usually good for two or three years after it’s been used.
When it comes to determining the durability of a specific type of exterior paint, one of the biggest factors to look for is also the simplest: color. The durability of modern paints is a bit of an unknown because they haven’t been around long enough to provide any sort of guarantee, but generally, the lighter the color, the longer the paint will last.
Dealing with uneven sun exposure
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A common issue that homeowners experience is when one side of their home (or more) receives an excessive amount of sunlight exposure, which can cause the paint to fade at an accelerated rate. Rather than repainting your entire house, a more economical option in this instance is to have your painter apply a single “maintenance coat” to the affected areas. Doing this every two years will help the paint on your home maintain a consistent look and delay the need for more expensive repainting in high-exposure areas.