Diamond Certified Companies are Rated Highest in Quality and Helpful Expertise.

  • Why this rating is the most accurate.
  • Our editors gather deep company info.
  • Performance is Guaranteed.

Diamond certified companies are top rated and guaranteed

Why Trust Diamond Certified Painting Contractors Rated Highest in Quality and Helpful Expertise®?

A painting contractor gives a home a fresh coat of paint.

You are the customer. If your goal is to choose a painting contractor that will deliver high customer satisfaction and quality, you’ll feel confident in choosing a Diamond Certified painting company. Each has been rated Highest in Quality and Helpful Expertise® in the most accurate ratings process anywhere. And you’re always backed by the Diamond Certified Performance Guarantee. Here’s why the Diamond Certified ratings and certification process will help you find a top rated painting contractor and is unparalleled in its accuracy, rigor, and usefulness:

1) Accuracy: All research is performed by live telephone interviews that verify only real customers are surveyed, so you’ll never be fooled by fake reviews.

2) Statistical Reliability: A large, random sample of past customers is surveyed on an ongoing basis so the research results you see truly reflect a Diamond Certified company’s top rated status.

3) Full Disclosure: By clicking the name of a company above, you’ll see the exact rating results in charts and read verbatim survey responses as well as researched articles on each qualified company.

4) Guaranteed: Your purchase is backed up with mediation and the Diamond Certified Performance Guarantee, so you can choose with confidence.

Click on the name of a Diamond Certified company above to read ratings results, researched articles and verbatim customer survey responses to help you make an informed decision.

More than 200,000 customers of local companies have been interviewed in live telephone calls, and only companies that score Highest in Quality and Helpful Expertise®–a 90+ on a 100 scale–and pass all of the credential-based ratings earn Diamond Certified. By requiring such a high score to qualify, the Diamond Certified Resource eliminates mediocre and poorly performing companies. Read detailed information about the ratings and certification process.

Read moreRead less


Yefim Skomorovsky is a 36-year veteran of the painting industry and owner of Classic Shades Painting Co., a Diamond Certified company since 2013. He can be reached at (415) 529-6958 or by email.

Yefim Skomorovsky

diamond certified contributor profile and expert article

Yefim Skomorovsky: A Broader Perspective

By James Florence, Diamond Certified Resource Reporter

SAN FRANCISCO — Born and raised in Ukraine, Yefim Skomorovsky moved to the United States shortly after reaching adulthood. Nearly 30 years later, he says living in two different parts of the world has given him a broader perspective not only in life, but in his career as well. “I enrolled in a painting apprenticeship when I was 14 years old, and after it was over I began working full-time in the industry,” he remembers. “When I was 18, I moved with my family to the U.S., where I got into another painting apprenticeship. I think being formally trained in both European and American painting methods has given me an advantage in terms of knowledge and perspective.”

Today, as owner of Classic Shades Painting Co., Yefim says his favorite part of his job is making customers happy. “I make sure my clients get what they pay for and are truly satisfied with the results. I always give 110 percent, and that effort pays off in the form of high customer satisfaction.”

As a resident of San Francisco (where he lives with his wife, Natasha, and their children, Brianna and Michael), Yefim spends much of his free time enjoying the diverse environments that comprise his local setting. “My family and I love living in the city and exploring different neighborhoods,” he affirms. “However, we also enjoy outdoor activities like camping and fishing. Being in the Bay Area, we’re lucky enough to have both.”

In regard to his professional career, Yefim espouses the importance of customer service. “I was fortunate to recognize many years ago that customer service is the key to a successful business,” he says. “A lot of people can paint, but being able to deliver both a quality job and a positive experience for the customer…that’s an art form. I’m at a point in my career where that’s my main focus.”

When asked the first thing he’d do if he were to retire tomorrow, Yefim says he’d take his family on an extended road trip. “I’ve already done a fair amount of traveling abroad, so I’d like to see more of the United States. It’s a beautiful country, and there are many places I haven’t been yet.”

Ask Me Anything!

Q: What kinds of books do you like to read?
A: Much of what I read is business-related. I’m interested in learning new things that I can apply to my business. For example, I just read a book about search engine optimization.

Q: If you could time travel, would you go to the past or the future?
A: The future, just to see what things are like and if we actually start colonizing other planets.

Q: What’s your favorite thing to do on a rainy day?
A: Hang out at home with my family.

Q: What’s your favorite local restaurant?
A: Ella’s in San Francisco.

Q: How do you like your eggs?
A: I get tired of the standard stuff, so I like it when they’re prepared in a unique way because it’s a different experience.

Read more

How to Create a Color Scheme for Your Home


SAN FRANCISCO — One of the most challenging aspects of a home painting project is choosing the right colors. Since the color scheme you select is something you’re going to live with for a long time, you should give it plenty… Read more

Expert Video Tip

Video: Creating a Color Scheme

Complete Video Transcription:

SAN FRANCISCO — Host, Sarah Rutan: One of the most important aspects of painting your home is choosing a color scheme you’ll enjoy looking at for… Read more

Daniel Morra is a 17-year veteran of the painting industry and president of Innovation Painting Plus, a Diamond Certified company. He can be reached at (415) 275-1070 or by email.

Daniel Morra

diamond certified contributor profile and expert article

Daniel Morra: Before and After

By James Florence, Diamond Certified Resource Reporter

SAN MATEO — Long before he was painting professionally, Daniel Morra had little interest in the trade—or any other, for that matter. “After high school, a couple of general contractors I knew offered to get me involved in the construction business, but it didn’t really appeal to me,” he remembers. However, after helping a friend with a painting project, Daniel caught a glimpse of what would later develop into a successful livelihood. “Everything changed for me in 1999, when I helped my friend paint his new house. I realized that house painting was something I could make a living at and actually enjoy doing as well. I decided to start painting houses on my own, and eventually I took on some employees and became a corporation.”

Today, as president of Innovation Painting Plus, Daniel says he still enjoys the before-and-after transformation that his everyday work entails. “Sometimes we’ll get to work on an old Victorian house that hasn’t been cared for in a long time, and after we’re finished, it makes a huge impact. Seeing the effects of my work keeps me excited and makes me feel good about what I do.”

Born in Argentina to native Italian parents, Daniel came to the United States as a teenager—a transition he describes as hard but manageable. “It wasn’t easy for me, but it was even tougher for my parents, who had difficulty adapting to the language.” Today, as a resident of San Mateo (where he lives with his wife, Angie), Daniel expresses his appreciation for the people of the Bay Area. “I love the people, the way they think and the fact that they come from all different parts of the world. The sheer diversity is pretty extraordinary, especially in San Francisco. It’s not something you see in most other places.”

In keeping with his love of diversity, Daniel devotes as much time as possible outside of work to travel. “Traveling is a big part of my life,” he affirms. “I love seeing different places and meeting different people, both in the U.S. and abroad.” Daniel also enjoys personal hobbies like collecting vintage toys, watching soccer and rugby, and playing with his mini rat terrier, Pine. “From a distance, she looks like a Chihuahua, but she has a different personality than most dogs her size. For instance, she’s a hunter.” In addition to hanging out with his canine cohort, Daniel takes time to keep up with his son, Frederico, who is currently attending college.

In his life and career, Daniel espouses the importance of showing respect for his clientele. “People can tell the difference between a painter who cares and one who doesn’t,” he says. “That’s why I train my employees to treat each house they work on as if it was their own. When you take care of the client’s house and treat it with respect, the client will notice.”

When asked the first thing he’d do if he were to retire tomorrow, Daniel says he’d allot more time to his favorite activity. “I would definitely do a lot more traveling. There are still plenty of places I’d like to see, including Tahiti and the Holy Land.”

Ask Me Anything!

Q: What’s your favorite restaurant?
A: My mom’s kitchen!

Q: If you could time travel, would you go to the past or the future?
A: The past—there are a lot of things I would change and people I would help.

Q: Are you an early bird or a night owl?
A: An early bird. I wake up around 5am and go to bed around 11pm.

Q: What’s your favorite thing to eat for dessert?
A: It’s a tie between ice cream and flan.

Q: What was your favorite toy as a child?
A: My “Masters of the Universe” He-Man action figure.

Read more

An Alternative for Cleaning Paint Brushes


SAN MATEO — After completing a painting project, the next thing to do is clean your brushes and other painting tools. This can be a frustrating process, not only because it’s messy, but also because you have to exercise care when handling… Read more

Expert Video Tip

Video: Cleaning Alternative for Paint Tools

Complete Video Transcription:

SAN MATEO — Host, Sarah Rutan: When it comes to cleaning your tools after a painting project, you might be surprised at how effective a common household… Read more




  • Benjamin Moore

  • Dunn-Edwards

  • Rust-Oleum

  • Cabot

  • Behr

  • Armstrong

  • Sherwin Williams

  • Farrow and Ball

  • Penofin

Sherwin-Williams Paint
PPG Paints
Devoe Paints
Fuller O’Brien Paint
Valspar Paints
Kelly-Moore Paints
Benjamin-Moore Paints
Glidden Paints
ICI Professional Paints
Ralph Lauren Paints
Mythic Paint
Behr Paint
Krylon Paint
Kilz Paint
Dulux Paint
Milk Paint
Frazee Paints
Cabot Paints
Dutch Boy Paints
Pratt and Lambert Paints
Dunn-Edwards Paint

house paint
color consulting
wood preservation
spray painting
elastomeric finishes
custom paint
exterior paint
interior paint
painting restoration
paint color matching
green painting
low VOC paints / no VOC paints
faux painting
decorative painting
commercial painting
textured painting
new construction painting
custom refinishing

Barbary Coast
Bayview District
Bernal Heights
the Castro
Cole Valley
Cow Hollow
Diamond Heights
Duboce Triangle
Eureka Valley
Financial District
Fisherman’s Wharf
Fort Mason
Glen Park
Golden Gate Park
the Haight
Hayes Valley
Hunters Point
Inner Richmond
Inner Sunset
Jackson Square
Laurel Heights
Marina District
Mission District
Nob Hill
Noe Valley
North Beach
Outer Richmond
Outer Sunset
Pacific Heights
Potrero Flats
Potrero Hill
Rincon Hill
Russian Hill
San Francisco
Sea Cliff
South of Market Street (SOMA)
Sunset District
Telegraph Hill
the Tenderloin
the Presidio
Treasure Island
Twin Peaks
Union Square
West Portal
Western Addition


Contractors State Licensing Board (CSLB) (http://www.cslb.ca.gov/)
Finishing Contractors Association (FCA) (www.finishingcontractors.org)
National Alliance of Professional Painters (NAPP) (www.thenapp.com)
National Paint and Coatings Association (NPCA) (www.paint.org)
Master Painters and Decorators Association (MPDA) (www.mpda.net)
Master Painters Institute (MPI) (http://www.mpi.net/)
Painting and Decorating Contractors of America (PDCA) (http://www.pdca.org/)

Know What You Want
Questions to Ask Yourself Before Hiring a San Francisco Painting Contractor

Before talking with local painters, decide the details of your upcoming painting project. For starters, know which areas of your home you want painted, the color scheme you’re looking for, the timeline in which you want the work done and the answers to the following questions:

  • Do I want a Diamond Certified painting company that is rated best in quality and backed by the Diamond Certified Performance Guarantee?
  • Which areas of my home need to be painted (i.e. interior painting, Victorian home painting, kitchen repainting, bedroom repainting, new bedroom paint, new paint all throughout the house)?
  • Are there any changes or repairs I’d like to have made before the painting contractors start the job (repairing or replacing moulding and trim, removing nails or patching wall damage, removing old wallpaper, popcorn ceiling replacement, etc.)?
  • What is my budget for the house painting services?
  • Am I looking for decorative or faux painting?
  • Do I plan to live in this home long term? am going to to sell or rent out this property?
  • What personal and professional characteristics would I like my San Francisco painting contractor to have? (These may include superior communication skills, promptness, honesty, dependability and cleanliness.)
Read moreRead less
What To Ask In Person
Questions to Ask San Francisco Painting Contractors in Person

When you’ve found a painting contractor you want to interview in person, invite them to see your painting project. The following questions are some you may want to ask those contractors you meet with.

  • How much time will it take your painting company to repaint my home?
  • How many coats of paint will you apply?
  • How do you come up with your painting estimate? Is the cost based on time and materials or a flat rate?
  • Will you give me a detailed estimate?
  • Will you do a pre-work and post-work inspections. (This can make certain the painters see possible problems before starting the work and detect missed spots, paint drips or spatters after the work is through.)
  • Have you completed exterior painting jobs in my area of San Francisco?
  • How should I handle any further service issues? Will you come back and repair any paint damage or provide warrantees on your work and the paints you use?
  • What can I do to make the painting easier?
  • Will you give me the names of your most recent customers so I can call them as references?
Read moreRead less
  • What To Ask References
    Ask Previous Customers About Their Experiences With Local Painting Contractors in San Francisco

    It’s best to choose a Diamond Certified painting company because all certified companies have passed an in-depth ratings process that most other painters can’t pass. If you want quality from a painter in San Francisco and the Greater Bay Area, you will feel sure when choosing a Diamond Certified painting contractor. Diamond Certified reports are available for all certified companies. And you’ll never be fooled by fake reviews, because all research is performed via live telephone interviews of actual customers.

    If you can’t find a Diamond Certified painter within reach, you’ll have to do some research of your own. It’s wise to call references provided by your painting contractor. Keep in mind, though, that references given to you by painting companies are not equal in value to the large random sample of customers surveyed during the Diamond Certified ratings process. That’s because references are rarely randomly selected from all of a company’s customers.

    If you do call references, ask for a list of the company’s 10 most recent customers. This will help avoid them giving you the names of only customers they know were pleased with the work.

    • Were you satisfied with the service from _(painting company)_?
    • What type of painting did they do for you?
    • Did the painters finish the work in the timeframe promised?
    • Did the painting contractor keep you informed about the status of the project?
    • If you live in a smaller neighborhood like Diamond Heights, Eureka Valley, Hunters Point, the Haight, Sea Cliff, SOMA, West Portal or in an area further from their office location, did the painters charge extra to drive to your home?
    • Did they show up on time for work?
    • Did the painting company clean up after they completed the job?
    • When you need new painting in the future, will you consider hiring this painter again?
    • Would you recommend this painting company to your friends and family?


    Read moreRead less
  • Review Your Options
    Consider Your Options Before Hiring a San Francisco Painting Contractor

    The Diamond Certified symbol has been awarded to companies that scored Highest in Quality in an accurate ratings process.

    Once you’ve carefully assessed your choices in local painters, answer the following questions to help you in choose the right company.

    • Can a painting company in San Francisco that you interviewed meet your needs for painting job scheduling, paints, products, techniques, service and experience?
    • Are the painters familiar with the paint brands and techniques your job will require?
    • Will the painting contractors explain the specific needs of your job?
    • Is the San Francisco painting company sensitive to your budget? ( Many contractors will give you bids for good, better and best options including choices in paint selection, number of coats, brands and services.)
    • Do the SF painters you’ve talked with offer written warranties?
    Read moreRead less
  • How To Work With
    Sign an Agreement With Good Painting Contractors in San Francisco

    Now that you’ve found the local painting company that’s right for you, ask for a contract. This contract should include written details on the price, quality and paints to be used, the start date and completion date.

    Before you sign the contract, be sure you understand all terms and limitations. The contract you sign is binding, and should protect your property and your interests as well as those of your contractor. For this reason, never sign a blank or incomplete estimate.

    When signing the contract, write in any requests or verbal agreements you made with the painters. This will protect you and ensure you get the services you want. These add-ons may also include end dates and instructions that aren’t covered by the standard contract. For example, rutted lawns, damaged shrubs and crushed flowerbeds are often unexpected results of exterior painting jobs.

    But you can protect your property. Before the work begins, schedule a walk through to conduct a pre-work inspection of your property with the painting company representative. List or photograph your property and talk with the representative about practical expectations for shielding your home and yard from damage during the work. Both you and the painting contractor should sign and date the document when you’ve reached an agreement. When the work is done, go with the contractor on a final examination and verify that your expectations were met.

    Prepare Your San Francisco Home for the Interior and Exterior Painting
    Professional house painters throughout San Francisco should be able to handle all necessary preparations for the painting work. But there are a few things you can do before their arrival and during the work to help their job go more smoothly. You may even cut down on invoiced hours or damage to your home and possessions.

    Take away furniture. Before the painters arrive, remove all furniture, heirlooms, antiques, decorative items, curtains, rugs, and other objects from the rooms slated for painting. Anything that’s not removed should be moved to the center of the room and covered with drop cloths or plastic. Some painters will take the time to move and cover furniture, but there may be an additional charge for this service. Ask who should ready the room for painting, and, if the painters offer it, how much they charge. It may be worth it to you to have them do it, or you may be able to save a few hours’ worth of charges by doing it yourself.

    Provide enough clearance and parking space for work trucks. Some painting companies have large work trucks that require more clearance or parking space than standard vehicles. Contact the company before the start date and ask them how much parking space they’ll need and whether their work trucks are oversized. You may find it helpful to walk through the site with your contractor ahead of time so they can point out potential clearance issues or hazards you can move or reduce before the painting begins.

    Trim plants and trees before exterior painting. If you’re hiring a San Francisco painting company for exterior painting, trim trees, bushes and other plants that are close to your home’s exterior. Ask your contractor about the amount of space they require around the perimeter of the job.

    Keep out children and pets. Your contractors shouldn’t be asked to watch out for children and pets. Cordon off all rooms to be painted and keep pets and kids away until after the painting is done and the paint is completely dry. This will prevent accidents, injuries and the expense of touch-ups and repainting.

    Read moreRead less
  • Be a Good Customer
    Be a Good Painting Company Customer In San Francisco

    Good contractors will use the best quality paints and the best painting techniques for every job. But you play a big part in the success of the job, too. Here are a few easy steps you can take to be a good customer when hiring an San Francisco painting company.

    • Let the painting company representative know what you want, the final outcome you’re expecting and specific ways they can satisfy your expectations.
    • Remember, a friendly smile goes a long way!
    • Before you hire a painting contractor, restate your understanding of the contract. Most problems occur when there is a lack of communication. But by being clear about your expectations and theirs, you can avoid most conflicts.
    • Ask your contractor if he will call you with updates about your job.
    • Be sure your service representative has a phone number where they can reach you at all times. The work will move along more smoothly if the company can reach you for any necessary updates, questions or additional work authorization.
    • When your contractor contacts you, return calls promptly to keep the painting on schedule.
    • Pay your painting contractor on time for services rendered.

    Why would you want to be a good customer? Painters appreciate customers who are straightforward, open and easy to work with. Your good customer behavior sets the tone from your end and contributes to a good working relationship. The job may very well go smoother and any problems may be more easily resolved.

    Read moreRead less
Check The Work
Review the Invoice and the House Painting Work

When the new painting is completed, most good painters will give you a written invoice for the completed work.

This usually includes:

  • The painting contractor’s name, business address and license number.
  • A list of all painting services completed.
  • An itemized list of all paint and painting supplies purchased, including brands, quality and amount.
  • The total cost for painting services, including the amount charged for labor.
  • Any warrantees or product guarantees provided by the paint manufacturers and the painting company.

Verify the completed work against the official invoice. Ask your painting company representative to walk through the job site with you and show you the work. Check what was done against the invoice to verify that the company did everything that was promised in the way they promised to do it. During the walk-through, ask if there are any special instructions for maintaining your new paint. If you have questions, now is the time to ask.

Read moreRead less
Written Warranties
Get Warrantees in Writing from San Francisco Painters

Most good painting contractors warranty their work or the materials they’ve used. All warranty details should be provided to you in writing during the contract phase or at the completion of the job. This written warranty should include:

  • The painting company’s name and physical address.
  • A complete list of the products and services covered by the warranty, including whether the contractor will replace or repair your paint in the event of product failure.
  • Your responsibility when filing a warranty claim (i.e., if you have to pay for labor or replacement paints, or if you are required to pay a prorated amount).
  • Terms, restrictions and exclusions to the warranties.
  • Whether the warranty covers the new owner if you sell your home.
Read moreRead less
Top 10 Requests
Popular Painting Service Requests for San Francisco Painting Companies

The top requests for painting services in San Francisco including those in Mission District, Bernal Heights, The Tenderloin, Sunset District and Richmond District and the surrounding areas are listed below.

Exterior Painting Services
Exterior paint is applied to the exteriors of homes and buildings. Exterior paints must be more elastic and fade-resistant than interior paints so they will stand up to weather conditions and fading.

Interior Painting
Painting on the interior surfaces of a home is referred to as interior painting. Interior paint for walls and ceilings comes in many colors and finishes, including faux and decorative painting, colored wood stains, clear paint finishes, matte wall paint, glossy paint and texturized paint. Many modern interior paints are available in low-VOC and no-VOC formulations that are less toxic than exterior paints.

House Painting

House painting can include interior painting and exterior painting, and often takes into account the entire process from color selection, paint prepping, taping, priming, painting and sealing. Consider hiring a house painter that has experience in the types of paints and painting techniques you’re looking for.

Paint Color Selection

Paint color selection is a service many larger painting companies in San Francisco offer. Paint selection involves potential paint color choices, existing colors in the home and overall room and decoration scheme. Paint matching services may also be available in cases where homeowners want to match new paint to an existing color.

Decorative Painting and Faux Finishing

Also known as faux finishing and faux painting, decorative techniques including tromp l’oeil, rag rolling, venetian plaster, sponge painting, marbling, stripe technique / paint striping, color washing, pickling or liming, wood graining, verdigris finishes, and antiquing are fashionable methods that add a custom look to homes.

Faux Painting / Faux Finishing
Like decorative painting techniques, faux painting is a technique that adds a faux finish to the surface so that the wall or ceiling appears to be made of something else. Examples of popular faux painting are: Venetian plastering, faux suede, faux marble or marbleizing and wood grain faux effects, sponge painting and paint marbling.

Low VOC Paint

Low VOC paints have lower quantities of volatile organic compounds, or potentially harmful chemicals. Low-VOC paints are often used in homes and offices where people spend a large amount of time, and are preferred for painting children’s bedrooms, nursery painting and painting in rooms where children spend a lot of time. Low-VOC and no-VOC paints may help improve indoor air quality and avoid toxin-related illnesses.

Industrial Painting Companies
Industrial painting services in San Francisco paint large industrial and commercial buildings. Industrial painting is often done on metal building interior and exteriors, ceilings, walls, floors, metal siding, metal roofs, office buildings and large professional buildings, parking garages, factories, manufacturing plants and storage warehouses.

Commercial Painting
Painting for commercial buildings, stores, schools, office buildings, museums, public structures and hospitals is known as commercial painting. Some contractors do only commercial painting, while others provide a combination of services for commercial, industrial and residential painting.

Painting Services
The term painting services encompasses all products and painting specialties offered by local painting companies in San Francisco. Popular painting services include house painting, interior painting, exterior painting, residential house painting, commercial painting, preparation, spray painting, paint rolling and high-volume painting services.

Top 10 Brand Requests

  1. Olympic Paint
  2. Behr Paint
  3. Valspar Paint
  4. Sherwin-Williams Paint
  5. Dutch Boy Paint
  6. Benjamin Moore Paint
  7. Kelly-Moore Paint
  8. Glidden Paint
  9. Dulux Paint
  10. ICI Paint


Read moreRead less
Glossary Of Terms
Key Terms and Descriptions for San Francisco Painting Company Consumers

acrylic paint
These water-based synthetic paints are known for performance and lasting color. Acrylic paints are water-soluble when wet but become flexible, durable and water-resistant once they’re dry. Acrylic paints can be diluted with water and can be mixed together to create new paint colors.

Also known as: acrylic house paint, acrylic latex paint, acrylic enamel, acrylic interior paint, acrylic exterior
paint, acrylic painting, acrylics

antique finishes
A specialized finish usually applied to furniture and woodwork to give the appearance of age and antiquing. Antique finishes may appear worn, cracked, rough or hand-rubbed and are often used on furniture, accent walls and room trim to complement décor.

Also known as: antique finish, antiquing, antiqued wood painting, faux antique finish, antique oil finish, shabby chic painting, antique painting, distressed paint, distressing, aged-look painting, country-antique finish

Curing is the time it takes for paint to fully bond and become dry and stable. While the surface of paint may dry quickly, making the surface appear dry, most paints take up to two weeks to dry down to the base. Care should be taken not to scratch, dent or scar curing paint. Ask your painting contractor how long your new paint should be left to cure.

Also known as: paint curing, paint drying, drying paint, high-temperature paint curing

cutting in paint
This painting technique creates a neat line where two colors meet. When cutting in, painters usually use a trim brush with beveled or angled bristles to apply a finished-line edge.

Also known as: cutting, cutting in paint, cut-in, cut-in walls, cutting-in ceilings, cut-in paint

eggshell finish
Eggshell finish is a type of paint finish that has a slight sheen and appears mildly shiny. It often has the same appearance as an eggshell, hence its name.

Also known as: egg shell finish, eggshell paint finish, satin finish paint, eggshell paint, egg-shell paint

elastomeric paint finishes
Elastomeric finishes are thick, flexible and waterproof rubberized paints. Elastomerics create a waterproof barrier on almost any surface, including masonry and stucco. Elastomeric paints are generally used on home exteriors and are available in almost every brand and color.

Also known as: elastomeric exterior paint, elastomeric masonry, elastomeric stucco paint, elastomeric rubberized paint, rubber paint, elastomeric coatings, waterproof paint barrier

enamel finish
A type of household paint that dries to a hard finish. Enamel finishes may be flat paint, gloss paint or semi-gloss paint.

Also known as: enamel interior paint, enamel exterior paint, hard enamel finish, glossy enamel paint

epoxy paints
Epoxy is a type of paint that is made from tightly-binding chemicals. Epoxies resist standing water and extreme surface conditions, so epoxy finishes are a good choice for industrial painting and other areas that need a tough, protective coating.

Also known as: polyester epoxy, fusion bonded epoxy powder coatings (FBE), epoxy resin, powder coatings, two-part epoxy coatings

faux finishing
Faux finishing encompasses a wide range of decorative painting techniques used to make one surface appear like another. Some faux painting creates an illusion of depth or texture. Common faux finishes include: texturizing, color washing, paint combing, marbleizing, wood graining, stria, rag painting, stenciling, metallic paints, glazing, plaster of paris, sponge painting, faux brick finishes, wall murals, smooth finishes, and other similar wall treatments.

Also known as: faux painting, faux finishes, faux finish painting, faux paint texture, decorative painting, decorative faux finishes

finish coat of paint
The final coat of paint applied to walls, ceilings and other structures is referred to as the finish coat. It is often an extra coat of the paint, but may be a clear coat depending on the paint and surface.

Also known as: finishing coat, final coat, top coat, finished coat

flaking paint
When paint fails and small pieces flake off, the paint is said to be flaking. Like peeling, cracking and blistering paint, flaking paint occurs when a layer of paint detaches from the surface it has been applied to. Once a paint job starts flaking, the best fix is to completely strip and sand the surface and reapply a better quality paint.

Also known as: paint flakes, flaking paint, chipped paint, peeling paint, paint flaking off

flat finish paint
Flat finish is the most common paint finish used for interior painting. Flat finishes reflect the least amount of light, and have no sheen or gloss. They are common interior and exterior paint choices.

Also known as: flat paint finish, flat finishes, no-gloss paints, flat paint, flat paint colors

gloss paint
Glossy paints have a shiny sheen and reflect light. Gloss finishes are shiny and durable, although they may be more prone to scratching and flaws than flat paints. Glossy finishes are generally used as accent paints on cabinets, trim and furnishings.

Also known as: glossy paint finishes, glossy paint finish, gloss finish, high gloss paints, demi-gloss finish, gloss paints, semi-gloss

Lacquers are fast-drying, clear or lightly-pigmented varnishes. Lacquer dries as solvents evaporate and often requires a curing process to develop a hard coating. Lacquer is most commonly applied to wood and furniture.

Also known as: lacquer spray, gloss lacquer, clear lacquer, lacquer sealant, lacquer sealer, shellac, varnish

latex paint
Latex paint are synthetic, water-based paints that dry quickly and are easy to clean. Latex paints are opaque and are easy to paint over with another latex-based paint.

Also known as: acrylic paint, acrylic latex paint

metallic paints
Metallic paints are interior paints that have metal flecks in them. The metal flakes are reflective and create a shimmery, luminous appearance.

Also known as: metallic paints, polychromatic paint, metal flake paint, metal paint, metallic-finish paint, metallics

paint fading
Paints that are exposed to high amounts of light, heat and weathering can experience fading. Fading can be postponed by choosing higher quality paints, choosing lighter colors and applying more coats of paint.

Also known as: paint fading, residential paint fading, faded paint, paint fade restoration, sun faded paint, sun fading paint

paint primer
Priming is applying a coat of primer paint to a surface before applying paint and finish coat. Primers assure a strong bond and prevent paint from peeling, chipping and flaking.

Also known as: priming, primer, paint prepping, preparation, primer coat, wood primers, primer sealer, primer spray

paint thinner
Paint thinners are solvents used to thin and clean up oil-based paints. Many paint thinners are made of toxic or potentially dangerous chemicals. Paint thinners should be used carefully and sparingly. Using a water-based paint will make it unnecessary to use paint thinners.

Also known as: paint solvent, acetone, mineral spirits, turpentine, naptha, touline, xylene, MEK, DMF, liquid thinner

peeling paint
When a layer of paint detaches from the lower layers of paint, it is referred to as peeling paint. Paint peeling can be caused by moisture or poor adhesion due to improper preparation. Peeling paint must be stripped, sanded and reapplied to a clean surface.

Also known as: paint peeling, interior peeling paint, exterior paint peeling, fixing peeling paint, peeling house paint, peeling bathroom paint, peeling paint texture

satin finish
Satin finishes have a rich texture and a slight glossy finish. They are also known as eggshell finishes. Satin finish paints are hard-wearing and easy to clean.

Also known as: satin interior paints, satin finishes, satin wall finish, satin-finish paint

Stain is a water-based or oil-based glaze that is applied to surfaces to add color. Unlike paint, which sits on the top of the surface, stain is absorbed into the surfaces. Stain is often used on wood and to permanently stain the surface.

Also known as: wood stain, staining, interior stains, exterior stains, surface stains, wall staining, paint staining

textured paint
Textured paint has grainy material within the paint or that can be applied with brushes, rollers, trowels or other tools to create special effects. Textured paint effects are often used to hide flaws, imperfections, accent furniture and decor, or hide stains and wall damage.

Also known as: paint texture, popcorn paint, sand paint, gritted paint, texture paint, texturized paint, paint texturing, applying texture to paint

Read moreRead less
Frequently Asked Questions
San Francisco Painters FAQ

Q: Why choose a Diamond Certified painting contractor in San Francisco?
A: Diamond Certified helps you choose a painter with confidence by offering a list of top rated local painting companies that have passed the country’s most in-depth rating process. Only painting companies rated Highest in Quality and Helpful Expertise® earn the prestigious Diamond Certified award. Most companies can’t pass the ratings. American Ratings Corporation also monitors every Diamond Certified company with ongoing research and ratings. And your contract is backed by the Diamond Certified Performance Guarantee, so you’ll feel confident choosing a Diamond Certified painting company in your area of San Francisco and the Bay Area.

Q: What is lead paint and why does it concern me?
A: Lead paint is the leading source of lead poisoning in children and adults, which can cause brain damage and slow physical development. Lead-based paints were applied to homes before 1978. Lead paint contamination isn’t usually a problem if the old paint is covered with new, lead-free paint. However, when the old paint chips, cracks, peels or is scraped, lead paint underneath can become exposed and pose a threat to children and pets.

If your home paint contains lead, your contractors legally need to take precautions when removing it. These containment procedures usually include sealing off the rest of the home, wearing respirators while removing the paint, destroying the clothes worn while removing lead paint, and using filtration systems and post-removal cleaning procedures to remove all lead particles from the home and area surrounding the home. If your contractor doesn’t use proper lead paint removal techniques, you can legally be held responsible for contamination.

Q: How do I know if my home was covered in lead paint?

A: Most homes built before 1978 were painted with lead paint. An easy lab test can prove if your paint contains lead. Some painting contractors in San Francisco will test for lead paint, and lead paint tests are available at most hardware stores for DIY lead paint testing.

Q: Can I paint my own house?
A: It is possible paint your home yourself. If the area you want to paint is small or you have experience, you may be able to do the job yourself. However, painting is often time-intensive, messy work. And depending on the size of your project, you may be wise to hire a professional to do the job. Professional painters have the knowledge, skill and the tools to do the job right. Most will also guarantee their work, so you’ll be more assured of getting a quality paint job that lasts for years longer.

Q: What is the difference between paint finishes?

A: Exterior and interior paint is labeled according to sheen and gloss. The higher the sheen, the more light reflects off of the paint and the shinier it appears. Your choice of paint depends on the area and surface, the color of paint and whether you’ll need to clean the painted surface or hide imperfections.

Matte and flat paints have very little or no gloss. They are often used on walls and ceilings and hide surface imperfections. Eggshell finish has a slight sheen and a lustrous appearance. It is often used on interior walls. Satin and silk finish paints have a finish that is in between that of eggshell and semi-gloss. They are easier to clean than flat paint. Semi-gloss finish is shinier, glossier paint. It is easy to clean and resists staining. However, the glossier a finish is, the more likely imperfections in the paint will be noticeable.

Q: Why do painting estimates vary so widely?
A: Painting contractors base their prices on the cost of labor, the time needed for painting preparation and repairs, the quality of paint applied and the number of coats. Cheaper bids may be a sign of a lower quality of work or less knowledgeable painters. However, you’re wise to ask the contractors when one bid is much lower or much higher than the others you’ve received to make sure the painting company is bidding on the same project and same details within the project. You can avoid most of this uncertainty by requesting detailed bids that are itemized to include quality and brand of paint materials, details about paint application and number of coats.

Q: Why is my exterior paint is peeling and what can I do about it?

A: Some paint will peel when overexposed to moisture and weathering. Your paint may be peeling because it is the wrong type of paint for the surface, it was applied poorly, or the surface was not properly prepared before painting. If your paint is peeling, there isn’t much you can do. The peeling paint will need to be scraped and removed, the surface sanded and prepared, and a new coat of paint applied. If you hired a local painter in San Francisco, call them back to address the situation. Good painters will usually stand behind their work, and they may repair or repaint your home based on the warranty they promised when they first did the job.

Your best course for dealing with peeling paint is to remove the entire coat of paint, not just the peeling area. That’s because the rest of the paint will most likely also fail since it was applied in the same way to the same surface. Contact a local San Francisco painting company to assess the damage and advise you on your specific situation.

Q: What are low-VOC and no-VOC paints? Should I consider using them?

A: VOCs are volatile organic compounds, or chemicals that emit potentially harmful gasses over time. Paint, lacquers, varnishes, paint thinners and paint removers often contain these chemicals. Paints with lower concentrations of these toxic compounds have become available recently.

There are also some paint brands that offer products with no VOC content. These natural paints and finishes are durable, cost effective and less harmful. Talk with your painting contractor and ask if they are familiar with low-VOC paints and whether they would recommend them for your home. Most customers who chose low VOC paints or no VOC paints do so because they are concerned about indoor air quality or have children or pets they want to protect over the long term.

Read moreRead less