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Do-It-Yourself Exterior Painting

Exterior painting is something that almost any homeowner, no matter the level of home improvement experience, can tackle successfully. However, it is important to follow these steps in the right order for a professional looking and long lasting surface. A good paint job helps protects not only the exterior, but the interior as well, by keeping water and other damaging elements out.

Preparing the surface for your exterior painting project

The first step in preparing the surface is to scrape off the old paint. Now, you don't have to get rid of all the old paint, just the peeling, cracking or bubbling parts. This is probably the most time-consuming and tedious part of exterior painting, but absolutely necessary in order to ensure a long-lasting paint job. Once you've scraped off most of the old paint, sand the scraped parts so that they are level with the bare siding. This prevents lines in paint, which just doesn't look good. After sanding and scraping, wash the house either with a power sprayer on low as to not damage the surface, or with an ordinary garden hose, perhaps with a car washing brush attached for a deeper clean.

Steps to exterior painting

Actually, preparing to paint the outside of your home is the hardest part of exterior painting. Once the surface has been properly scraped, sanded, washed and allowed to dry, next comes the easy part-the actual painting.

The first coat of paint you apply is the primer, which evens out the surface and covers any of the existing color. It also helps to seal the exterior of your home. You can apply one to two coats of primer, or more if necessary, but be sure to wait the manufacturer's recommended drying time before applying another coat. After the primer, it's time for color. Painting the outside of your house will go much more quickly with a power sprayer, but if you don't have the resources to rent or buy one, a regular old roller will do just fine. Remember that the first coat of color is just a base coat. The more coats you apply, the darker the color will be and the coverage of the existing color will be better. Roll top to bottom, and then go back with a small paintbrush to smooth out any "roller ridges." Don't forget to let each coat dry thoroughly before adding another.


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