Proper Prep: How to Prep a House for Painting Exteriors

The Essential First Steps in Exterior House Painting

Before diving into painting your home’s exterior, it’s crucial to get everything ready. Proper preparation ensures your paint job looks great and lasts longer. This part of the process involves several key steps, like dealing with loose paint and ensuring surfaces are clean and ready for new paint. 

In this blog, we’re going to walk you through these essential steps. Plus, we’ll talk about why sometimes it’s best to call in professionals, like the team at BCI, for that perfect finish.

Exterior House Paint Prep – It’s All Part of the Process

Preparing your house for painting is more than just picking up a brush. Here’s what you need to do:

  • Inspect for Loose Paint: Walk around your home and check for any flaking or peeling paint. These areas will need special attention.
  • Pressure Washing: Use a pressure washer to clean off dirt, mildew, and any loose paint. This step is crucial for getting a smooth, clean surface for painting.
  • Repair Damages: Look for any cracks or damages in the siding or trim. These should be repaired before painting.
  • Scraping and Sanding: After pressure washing, scrape off any remaining loose paint. Then, sand the surfaces to create a smooth base for the new paint.
  • Priming: Apply a quality primer to any bare wood or previously unpainted surfaces. This helps the new paint adhere better and last longer.
  • Caulking: Seal any gaps or cracks in the siding or around windows and doors with caulk to prevent moisture from getting in.

The Key Role of Pressure Washing in Paint Prep

Pressure washing is a critical step in preparing your house for painting. It removes not just dirt and grime, but also old, chipped paint that can prevent new paint from sticking properly. When using a pressure washer, it’s important to hold the nozzle about 12 to 18 inches away from the surface and use a 45-degree angle spray. 

This technique ensures effective cleaning without damaging the surface. Remember, power washing sets the foundation for an excellent exterior paint job. By eliminating any dirt, mildew, or old paint, the new coat of paint will adhere better and last longer.

Addressing Bare Wood and Lead Paint Concerns

If your home has areas of bare wood, they need special attention before painting. Sand these areas down and apply a primer to ensure the paint sticks and lasts. Now, if your home is older and might have lead paint, safety is key. 

Lead paint can be harmful, so it’s important to handle it carefully or consider professional help. When dealing with lead paint, wear protective gear and avoid sanding it, as this can release harmful dust. In such cases, contacting a professional like BCI can ensure safe and effective paint prep.

Choosing the Right Tools for Exterior Paint Prep

When you’re getting ready to paint your house’s exterior, having the right tools can make all the difference. Here are some essential tools you’ll need for a successful paint job:

  • Paint Scrapers: To remove old, peeling paint.
  • Orbit Sander with Medium Grit: For smoothing out rough surfaces.
  • Drop Cloths: To protect your lawn, plants, and walkways from paint drips.
  • Power Washer: For effectively cleaning the exterior surfaces.
  • Paint Brushes and Rollers: For applying paint and primer.
  • Ladder: To reach high areas safely.

Using these tools can help you get the job done more efficiently and ensure a smooth, even coat on your painted surfaces.

Picking the Perfect Paint Color and Type

Choosing the right paint color for your house is a big decision. It’s not just about what looks good; the type of paint you use is important too. When it comes to exterior painting, you have two main choices: latex paint and oil-based paint. 

Latex paint is popular because it dries quickly and is easy to clean up. However, oil-based paint is known for its durability, especially in harsh weather conditions. Consider the typical weather in your area and the environment around your home. The right paint can withstand local weather conditions and keep your home looking great for years.

Ensuring Good Weather and Optimal Conditions

Good weather is essential for a successful exterior paint job. Ideal painting conditions are dry and not too hot or cold. Moisture and extreme temperatures can affect how paint dries and how long it lasts. 

Before starting your painting project, check the forecast for a stretch of good weather. Aim for a period without rain and with moderate temperatures. This ensures the paint adheres properly and dries evenly, giving you a better, longer-lasting finish.

Taking the Next Step Towards a Flawless Exterior

Proper preparation is key to a successful exterior paint job. From picking the right paint color and type to ensuring you paint in good weather, each step is important. And while doing it yourself is an option, professional painters can provide the expertise needed for the best results. 

If you’re thinking about painting your home’s exterior and want it to look its best, consider reaching out to BCI. Our team can help you every step of the way, from choosing the right paint to applying it perfectly. With our help, you can achieve a flawless exterior that you’ll be proud of.