Getting Ready to Paint the Exterior of Your Home
As with all painting projects, the key to success is preparation. Your first step is to clean everything thoroughly with a solution of tri-sodium phosphate (TSP) or a good phosphate-free substitute. This removes dirt and grime that would keep new paint from adhering.
- Trim Brushes and Limbs
- Remove Shutters and Close Storm Windows
- Remove Old Putty
- Scrub the Siding and Trim with Solution
- Rinse House
Trim Brushes and Limbs
Trim or tie back any bushes and limbs that will get in your way. Cover nearby plants with drop cloths or tarps. Turn off any air conditioning units and cover them with plastic and tape as needed.
Remove Shutters and Close Storm Windows
Remove any shutters and close the storm windows. Inspect your siding and trim carefully, looking for holes and cracks, then make the necessary repairs. You should fill holes and damaged areas with some wood filler, let it dry, then sand it smooth.
Remove Old Putty
You'll want to reglaze windows if the old putty is cracked or shrunken. You can remove the old putty with a chisel or stiff putty knife, but be careful not to break the glass. Apply the new glazing compound as needed, pressing it in place with a putty knife.
Scrub the Siding and Trim with Solution
Use a brush or broom to scrub the siding and the trim with a solution of tri-sodium phosphate or a phosphate-free substitute. You can rent a pressure washer that makes fast work of this job, but be careful not to force water into any cracks between the siding. Be sure to wear gloves and other protective gear when using cleaners and chemicals.
Carry the plate or bucket of glaze in your other hand, or keep it nearby on a chair or stepladder.
Remove any Remaining Paint
Use a power sander to remove any remaining paint scraped areas. A sander will cut through the paint in a hurry, so be careful not to damage the siding. Please click here for exterior painting techniques.
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Skill Level: Intermediate
Time: 5 hours
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