How to Prepare Different Surfaces for the Best Home Painting Outcome

A home’s interior paint is an indication of the home owner’s character. One of the most common problems that people encounter when painting is improper surface preparation. Improper surface preparation is often the common root cause of headaches in the outcome of a home owner’s completed paint job. The home owner, or the home painting contractor that they hire, should ensure that they remove any grime, nicotine, grease or other dirt. It is improper to paint on a surface that is not yet repaired, cleaned and prepped. To ensure the best possible results of your home paint job here are some suggestions:

Weather Conditions

Surface preparation, as well as the application of paint, should be done when optimal weather conditions exist.  Let’s face it, Connecticut is home to weather extremes at times so here are some things to consider as it relates to the best weather conditions for painting to maximize the outcome of your home paint job:

  • Temperature – primers and other coating systems used as part of surface preparation, shouldn’t be applied if it does not meet the manufacturer’s requirements in air and surface temperature.
  • Humidity – preparing surfaces and applying paint if the relative humidity goes over the stated percent can lead to adhesion problems which can also result in bubbles and blisters.
  • Dew point – when the dew point is higher than what it is recommended, condensation may form. This can cause premature coating failure. To prevent this condensation, the surface temperature should be around 5⁰ F above the dew point.
  • Wind velocity – wind speed is important for two reasons. If it is windy, it can cause dust particles, dirt and contaminants. High wind speed can quicken the evaporation rate of the solvent resulting in the fast drying of water based paints.

In ensuring a high-quality paint work, dew point, humidity, temperature and wind velocity should always be considered before starting any home paint job.

Surface Condition

Dirt, dust, oil, grease, chemicals and salts can be a factor that may negatively affect adhesion and service life of pant films. For an adequate surface preparation, you have to perform:

  • Visual inspection to know the condition of the surfaces that are in need of painting and identify water damage, contamination, physical damage and other related problems that can affect the outcome of your paint job.
  • Water-break test helps in detecting areas that were contaminated with oil grease.
  • UV “black light” test can determine if there is a presence of hydrocarbons.
  • Fill in any small holes using a patch kit. Make sure to sand any unsmooth surfaces down before applying any paint.

Painting contractors use variety of surface preparation methods depending on its substrate condition. Pretreating areas with mold growth and corrosion problems is also necessary for best results of your painting job.

Choosing the Right Paint

Specifying the correct paint is also as important as surface preparation. According to experts, there isn’t one best paint for all jobs. The color, washability, scrubbability and durability are some of the most important factors that you have to consider in choosing the right paint for your home. It is also a better choice to invest in a high-quality product. Products that can stand up against aggressive conditions and physical wear can pay dividends in over the long haul.