Insuremyhouse.ie’s Home Maintenance Tips: How to paint the exterior of your home
Summer in Ireland is coming into full swing, and with many of us staying at home due to COVID-19 nothing has become more popular than home repairs! Home repairs can also do wonders for the value of your home.
Painting has becoming increasingly popular in Ireland, especially as the weather has been fairly mild, making it the perfect time to put a coat of fresh paint on the side of your home and make any much-needed repairs.
Painting the exterior of your home however should not be taken lightly and is a job that requires time and commitment. Today at insuremyhouse.ie we’ve provided a comprehensive overview of painting the outside of your home so that you can get started. Follow the tips below and follow insuremyhouse.ie for more home improvement tips in the coming weeks!
Clean the Exterior of your home
The first steps when it comes to preparing your house for painting is to clean the exterior of your home. This is inevitably a big job and takes some time and patience but is one of the most rewarding parts of giving your home it’s glow-up. There are a few ways which you can clean the exterior to prepare for painting, but power washing your home is typically seen as the most effective in the exterior painting community.
Pressure washing your home is one of the fastest and most effective ways to clean years of dirt, grime, bird droppings and mildew off the outside of your home – however understanding pressure washing and the process is imperative.
You want to ensure that if you are going to pressure wash the exterior of your home to prepare to painting that you understanding the exact PSI pressure that your homes exterior requires as wood, pebbledash, stucco and stone finishes will all require a different kind of pressure. Using the wrong one can cause damage to your home.
When renting a pressure washer, consult with the experts and be prepared to provide them with material of the exterior of your home and square footage. They can advise you on the best solution to clean the exterior of your home.
Alternately there are many professional cleaning companies who handle the exterior cleaning of your home and will know exactly the best and most efficient methods are when it comes to preparing the exterior of your home for fresh coat of paint.
After this process you will want to allow the side of your house to dry for AT LEAST 24 hours, preferably at least 48 hours in damp climates like Ireland.
Tools to use:
Remove loose paint and repair any damaged surfaces
Once your home is rid of any of the exterior grime that has been paining your home for years, you want to move on to touching up damaged surfaces and removing any paint that will affect the final finish of your home. While these may seem like minor issues overall, failing to do this step will likely result in you having to re-paint your home much sooner than you might have planned
- Removing Paint:
Removing peeling paint will mostly come into play when you’re dealing with wood sided or paneled homes. When it comes to removing peeling paint from your home, you want to ensure that you’re using a paint scraper. These can be found in any hardware store such as Woodies or B&W and come in a variety of sizes. For the exterior of your home it’s best to have two sizes, one medium sized, long handled scraper for some of the larger areas, and a smaller short scraper to help touch up edges and small bits of peeling.
Remember, when scraping paint from your home the goal is not to get it all off. The goal is to focus on the areas of your home that are already suffering from peeling. If you push or scrape too hard, this can cause damage to the outside of your home and provide you with more work overall. Focus on the areas that really need it, and the stubborn rest can stay.
Finally – don’t forget the windowsills!
- Repairing Damaged Surfaces
When we talk about repairing damaged surfaces on the exterior of your home, we mean all the damaged surfaces. While this may seem like a time-consuming task, it is one of the most important when it comes to aesthetics. It’s going to allow your home to have a clean and polished look when you’re finished.
Some of the areas that you will want to focus on repairing are the following:
Splintered Wood: Ensure that any areas of splintered or rotting wood from the windowsills and other finishes on the home have been removed, replaced or sanded down to provide a clean surface and finished look.
Gaps in concrete/stone: Replace any gaping areas that may have worn down on the siding of your home or broken off due to inclement weather.
Caulking: Ensure that all seals in the home are provided with caulking to prevent any future leaks and repair any cracks or gaps in your wall. By doing this prior to painting, you can then paint over the discolouration that is typically caused and allow the caulking to appear flush to the surface of the home.
The above steps are critically important prior to painting. There is nothing worse than have a fresh coat of paint on your home and having it ruined by rotten wood, gaps in the moudling or caulking issues. If you are uncomfortable performing any of these jobs, a reputable carpenter or handyperson might be just what you’re looking for.
Tools to use:
Prepare the rest of the exterior of your home
Once all home repairs have been completed you can then move on to protecting and preparing the rest of your home for the task at hand
- Window protection
Use window covering and tape them off using painters’ tape to protect them from getting any paint on them throughout the process. If you do get any paint on a window, wait for it to dry and gently scrape it off.
- Trim & Door Protection
Ensure that all doors and window trims are sealed and protected with painters’ tape. In this situation you want to ensure that you’re using at least a 2 – 3-inch-thick tape on each surface.
If you are planning to paint your trims and doors, we suggest you do this after concluding the painting of the large surfaces so that they won’t be affected by painters’ tape, and touch ups will be easier.
- Ground Protection
You may not have considered it but protecting the ground beneath you is imperative when painting the exterior of your home. The last thing that you want to do is finish putting a fresh coat of paint on your home only to find that your entire garden is now the same colour as your home. Drop cloths can be purchased from any hardware store and can saved for reuse. Alternately old bedsheets, linens and curtains can work in a pinch.
- Remove items from the side of the house
Many of us have planters, equipment, dog houses or other items that are taking up space in our gardens and pressed against the house. You want to ensure that all of these are moved as far away from the home as possible for two reasons, one of which is to protect them from any paint splashes. The second, and most important is that you want to ensure that that area is clear for safety purposes. You should provide yourself with a completely clear area to keep yourself safe when you’re up on a ladder.
Tools to use:
The final step – painting
Preparation is inevitable the most time-consuming part of any painting job. Now that it’s out of the way, you can begin to paint.
- Primer is important
If you have performed repairs to your home in the lead up to painting and have any unfinished or exposed wood areas, it’s important to utilise a primer to seal these surfaces. Not only will it provide your home with a clean and polished look, but it also provides an additional moisture barrier between your fresh paint and the surface of your house which prevents the paint from seeping into any wood surfaces and causing discolouration.
- Colour Selection
The first thing that you want to do of course, is select your colours. It’s often advisable to choose a shade that is going to be somewhat similar to the current shade of your house, or darker. The reason for this is that if you try and paint your house a much lighter colour, you risk having some of the old colour bleed through upon drying – causing more coats of paint and more work for you at the end of the day. If you are sure about a lighter shade, ensure that you’re prepared for the extra amounts of coating and utilise a primer beforehand.
- Paint Mixing
When you are painting the exterior of your home, you are talking about hundreds of square metres of surface of the same colour. What many people overlook when it comes to purchasing paint colours, is that every colour is going to be slightly different, even if purchased in the same brand and mixed in the same store.
Resolving this issue is actually easier than you would think. Once you’ve calculated the amount of paint that you need, you can purchase a few large resealable buckets and mix each of the purchased barrels of paint together and then mix. As your paint colours mix together this is going to ensure a cohesive colour is spread throughout the entire exterior of the house.
- Painting methods
Finally, we come down to the crux of the project – actually putting paint to the wall. When it comes to painting the exterior of your home, this is actually the easy part, and the most rewarding.
First, you’ll need to decide what painting tools you’re going to use, and this will be dependent on the size and the type of exterior of your home. If the outside of your home is a flat surface such as wood or concrete, using a traditional paint roller is perfect for completing the job.
However, if your home is stucco or another uneven surface you might find a paint roller to be impossible to do the job because it won’t be able to fit into even nook and cranny. With that said, this is where spray-painting (and not the graffiti kind), can be the perfect solution. To do this you purchase a paint sprayer from your local DIY store, and fill it with paint, you then use the pressurised nossle to evenly coat the side of your home with paint. This is also excellent if you have any standout pieces of architecture on your home that might be challenging with a roller and brush.
Remember to always keep clean clothes on hand in the case of drips and spills
Tools to use:
- Large bucket
- Painting Trays
- Paint roller extender
- Paint roller
- Paint Brush
- Paint Sprayer
Finishing the job
There is little that is more satisfying than completing a job painting the exterior of your home. This process, while time consuming can be incredibly rewarding and provide your home with a fresh look that can increase the overall aesthetic of your property and restore pride in your home.
It’s important to remember that painting your home is not an overnight project, but one that takes time. However, the additional time and care you put into your home will ultimately be rewarding, and it’s important to maintain your home from both a personal and insurance perspective.