10 things to know about painting the exterior of your house

exterior house painting prices massachusetts

Some people say that the appearance of a house exterior is not important and that what really matters are functionality and comfort. This is not really the case, because the appearance of the exterior is no less important. In fact, it goes hand in hand with functionality and comfort. Exterior painting is much more than an aesthetic concern, it is a practical matter. It makes the materials more resistant to damaging elements such as extreme weather conditions, dust, insects and even rot in the case of wood. Before deciding to paint the exterior of the house, you have to take into consideration some essential details, such as priming, painting equipment, the quality of the materials, the right time to paint and how to maintain it. So, if you want to beautify the exterior of your house while making it more resistant and durable, you might want to prepare for a house painting.

When Is the Right Time to Paint Your Home Exterior?

A nice makeover is always refreshing! However, most people think about painting their house exterior only when it looks like it really needs it. The most obvious signs are, of course, chipping and cracking paint, but there are also some less evident signs. It depends on the type of material and the quality of the paint. Typically, the exterior walls are painted every 5 to 10 years. It is really important whether the painting job was done professionally or not. If using top-quality materials and applied with care by a professional, the paint can last up to 15 years!

How much time does it take to paint the house by yourself?

Some people choose to paint the house by themselves because they want to save some money. It is really the thriftiest decision because they only save the money that they would have had to pay to the contractor for the service provided. With a DIY approach, there is no guarantee that the finished job will be successful. Wouldn’t it be a waste to spend a lot of money on paint and tools, spend a few days on preparing and then another few days on the painting and cleaning up for something that doesn’t look good or did not last as long as you expected? The exterior house painting cost is not so big relative to the quality of the service.

Why should you hire professional painters?

Hiring a house painter means, first of all, saving a lot of time. A professional painter is qualified to do the job quickly and efficiently. After all, it is in everyone’s best interest to get the job done as soon as possible – the painter gets the money, you get a fresh, more beautiful and resistant house exterior!

An advantage of hiring a professional is that they are very attentive to details. They will make sure that all cracks in the wall are filled, that the surfaces are primed accordingly and other things to get the walls into the paint-ready condition. Depending on the surface of the exterior, the condition of the materials, the quality of the paint and layers of paint necessary, hiring a contractor might prove costly, but it is a feasible long-term investment.

The right weather conditions for painting

Be very mindful of the weather when you decide to start painting. There are a few general tips that you should follow when it comes to the right weather conditions:

  • Check the temperature that the paint tolerates. It should be indicated on the label.
  • Avoid direct sunlight. The heat dries the paint too fast, which can cause lap marks, or even blistering and peeling.
  • Avoid harsh wind. The wind also dries the paint too fast and it can blow dirt onto the freshly painted surface.
  • Avoid painting when there’s a chance of rain.

How to prepare the house for the paint job?

The first thing that needs to be done is cleaning the walls. For this purpose, a mix of water and a phosphate-free cleaner can be used. Once there is no more mildew and dirt, the next step is paint removal. After that, the remaining rough spots should be smoothed out. Make sure that the minor damages, such as holes, dings, and chips, are repaired. If the surface is repaired and smooth, the primer can be applied. The primer is very important because it is the base for the topcoats of paint. If you want to prevent air leaks and water penetration, but also give the paint a nice look, you can use caulks. After the preparation is ready, the paint can be safely and efficiently applied.

Tools and materials needed

If you want to know about the tools and materials needed, whether you’re just curious or want to paint by yourself, here’s what you need to know. The most important thing is to have the protection coverall suit. As for the tools, there are a few that are typically used. For the scraping part, a handheld scraper is usually preferred, but one can also use a hot-air gun or infrared paint stripper. For smoothing the rough parts, the pad sander is usually the go-to.

The minor damages should be filled in with a patching putty or other special compound. As for the primer, there are 2 main options. If you want to use latex paint, go for latex primer. But if you’re painting over multiple coats of oil-based paint, then you should choose oil-based primer.

The quality of the paint

Quality is essential for how long the painting will last and how good it will look, so don’t try to cut back on the amount you spend on paint. Buy paints only from reputable paint manufacturers. As for the type of paint, you can mainly go for water-based or oil-based paints. If your house already has an oil-based paint, which is more durable, you’ll have to stick with it.

The water-based outdoor paint is easier to apply and dries more quickly. It is also great for waterproofing your walls, while simultaneously allowing the already existing moisture to evaporate, which prevents the formation of damp. 100% acrylic latex paint is the most popular and most reputed nowadays.

Don’t forget about the exterior house painting finish. You can go for a flat finish, which helps hide imperfections better but is not as durable. Or, you can go for a satin finish, which is neither dull nor too shiny. You can also go for a glossy finish, which is the easiest to clean but is not suitable for all surfaces.

How much paint lasts on different types of materials?

How long before a new repainting? This is the question that everyone undertaking a painting job asks but to which there is no easy answer. It depends on a lot of things: the location, the climate and, of course, the materials. Wood, for example, is usually repainted every 4 years because of the staining. You have to look for the best exterior wood paint if you want it to last up to 7 years. For aluminium, the paint usually lasts 5 years. Paint on stucco can also last 5-6 years if done professionally. The most long-lasting are cement fiberboard, which can last from 10 to 15 years and brick, which can easily go for 15 years without repainting.

Tips on how to make the paint last

There are a few things you can do to make sure that the exterior house paint will last for as long as possible. You should inspect the exterior every year or every few years and do the following:

  • Wash the stains regularly.
  • Remove any mold or mildew.
  • Repair the minor damages as soon as they appear, such as blisters and peels.
  • Include sealing where necessary.
  • Inspect the caulk every year and replace a surface that is cracked or missing.

What effect do the colors have?

The colors used for painting are no less important than the quality of the paint. They have to match your home and the environment surrounding it. The color and luster in paint fade because of the sun’s ultraviolet rays, especially when it comes to oil-based paints. Also, keep in mind that dark colors lighten more quickly in the sun. Shiny, reflective finishes are less likely to harden, blister, crack or allow mildew growth over the years but make imperfections more visible. Flat finishes tend to become chalky and accumulate more mildew over the years.

The appearance of your home exterior is very important, it creates the first impression to anyone who comes to visit or happens to pass by. It says a lot about you and therefore you should strive to keep it neat and presentable.

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