You own your house (well, you and the bank). You may have lived in it for over 10 years. You come and go without too much thought as to what it looks like. You drive by it paying attention to everything but your house. You may not have noticed the things that tell you when it’s time to find a qualified contractor to paint your house. Did you know that when you can see paint peeling or bubbling that there is a strong possibility that your home may already have wood damage?
When is the last time you checked the caulking around your chimney? Lack of caulking around the chimney can cause water damage to your ceilings and damage to your fireplace wood work.
Painting your home protects it from rain and damage to the wood. Paint is like the skin to your home. It repels rain, snow and wind. Paint protects the wood from rotting. You may be familiar with this if you had your windows replaced and were told that your had wood rot around them. If the windows were not installed with an airtight seal, and if there are gaps between the window and the sill, then wood rot can occur. Same goes for the paint on your house!
One of the first signs that a home needs to be repainted is the paint is beginning to peel or crack. This is an initiation for moisture to penetrate your wood framing and foundation, which can be costly to repair.
Depending of what your home is made of will affect how often you may need to paint it. You can expect to paint your home every 7-15 years if you home is made from shingles, cement fiberboard, cedar or wood.
The trim on your house, around windows and doors, may need to be painted more often than the rest of the house. They get the most wear and tear and can be easily touched up every few years if need be.
The painting surface of your house needs to be prepared to accept the paint. First, you should pressure wash the exterior. Then, repair any wood that needs attention. The repairs should be primed with an oil based primer. Next, thoroughly caulk around any windows or doors that need it. After your home is completely dry, remove the downspouts and paint the home.
Your painting contractor should pay attention to the details and extra special attention to the quality of paint you use. Only use high quality paint and caulking. When quality paint is not used and the painting job is rushed, you will need to repaint your home long before you should have to. Using cheap caulking materials will shrink and cause gaps around your windows, resulting in wood rot from rain and snow.
Some unscrupulous industry practices to be aware of:
Painting your house is an investment that you make every 7-10 years. Make that stretch to 15-16 years! Take the time to re-caulk around your windows and repaint and touch up areas that need attention. Maintaining the paint on your house is like anything else in your household that you maintain on a regular basis. If you continue to take care of it, it will last longer and be less costly in the short and long run!
While the downspouts are off, take advantage and clean the gutters, have them replaced or have gutter guards installed. If your gutters are too small water can back up behind your house causing mold and wood rot problems.
The summer is coming and college kids are looking for jobs. They need to make a living too but painting your house is a professional skill that requires knowledge and experience. The least expensive person to do the job may not always be the best person. Hire general contractors, they know how to take care of the outside and the inside of your home. Trust your home’s painting job to a professional!By Chad Pfeffer