Advice and Instructions for Exterior Wall Painting
Last modified: 2018/05/11 | 4 mins
Every few years, the exterior walls of your house may need a fresh coat of paint to give the house a new look. Learn more about the ins and outs of exterior wall painting with RenoQuotes.com's easy-to-follow advice and instructions.
Prepare your work surface
Start by clearing away any obstacles around the walls. For example: your mailbox, exterior lighting equipment, furniture, etc... Once you have organized your work environment, the next step is to clean the surface you will be painting. If the siding on your house is heavily stained, you may have to use a pressure washer to get rid of the accumulated dirt. You should also take this opportunity to repair any minor cracks or holes. However, if the siding is heavily damaged, painting it might not be a good idea. In this case, you may be better off replacing it altogether.
Types of paint you should use for exterior wall painting
There is no one specific answer to this question. It really depends on three things: the type of siding that is installed on your exterior walls, the current state of said walls and lastly, your own personal taste. Paint is available in many different colors and finishes. Here are two different types of paint that can be used outside:
Matte paint: Also known as flat paint, this type of finish tends to swallow light instead of reflecting it. Only to be used on walls that are in good condition and need little to no repair. If you live in a humid area, be sure to apply an anti-foam sublayer before you start painting.
Structured paint (or Textured paint): Looking to give a rustic feel to your outside walls? Go with structured paint. This is a great option for older walls which are a bit damaged. Choose the type of finish which best suits the look for which you are going: brushed, fiber, grainy, etc....
In both cases, make sure the paint you choose is waterproof. Exterior painting also requires equipment that is more sophisticated than the ones used for regular painting. We recommend using a roller which is specially made for façades.
To paint exterior walls and surfaces, you will have to equip yourself accordingly, as equipment for exterior painting is more sophisticated than that used for "normal" painting. We recommend buying a paint roller specifically designed for facades, which varies in thickness depending on the type of surface.
For optimal results, do not hesitate to call a specialist who will complete the painting job.
First tip: start the work by painting walls located in shaded areas, to prevent the surface from drying too quickly. Use both a brush and a roller, the former being used for small areas and the latter being perfect for larger surfaces. Start at the top, gradually painting towards the bottom of the wall.
Regarding the number of layers, follow the instructions specific to the product you have chosen. If you have to apply several layers, do not forget to let each of them dry properly before working on the next one. Also note that you should start by painting the walls before taking on the doors and window frames.
Here is a recap of the main steps of an exterior wall painting project:
Plaster paint: an alternative to regular paint
With regular paint, you have to apply more than one coat to get a good result. However, plaster paint only needs one coat for a complete cover-up. Plaster paint is applied in the same was as regular paint. What differs in this case is the equipment used to complete the job. In this case you will need a 2mm paint roller made specifically for this type of work. To ensure a nice, smooth look, start painting from the top of the wall and use zigzag movements to cover the whole surface.
Finally, for the last step, you will have the chance to give your wall the texture and look you want. Specialized paint stores usually carry plaster rollers which are made out of rubber. They give the surface a nice textured finish.
DIY or hiring a professional
Wondering if you should do the paint yourself or hire a professional painter? Here are a few pros and cons for both options:
Do it yourself: You will save money on labour. However, the results might not be as good. Without knowing, you might buy the wrong type of paint or equipment.
Hire a professionnal: Good results guaranteed. They know which type of product to use on your walls. Painters often have discounts at paint stores, meaning that equipment and product costs will be lower than if you buy things yourself.
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