Paint Like A Pro That Lasts

There’s nothing like a fresh coat of paint to give the outside of your home real curb appeal. It’s a big job, but with the right tools and a few tips from the pros, your paint job can look beautiful for years.

Professional painters know that one coat of primer and one coat of paint will give you a better, longer- lasting paint job than two coats of paint. That’s why they prime first, then paint. Here’s why:

• Primers provide the perfect foundation for paint. Paint is formulated for color and durability. Primers are formulated to provide the ideal base for paint. High-quality primers, like Bulls Eye 1-2-3®, are rich in resin so they adhere to surfaces much better than paint alone. And unlike paint, they stick to hard-to-paint surfaces like vinyl siding so you can get great results. They’re also formulated to seal porous surfaces like brick, concrete, masonry and new wood, so you use less paint and get a more even color and sheen.

• Primers block stains. Wood, like cedar and redwood, has a high tannin content that can bleed right through ordinary paint. Graffiti, mildew and other stains can also bleed through if you don’t prime first. Stain-blocking primers are specifically formulated to block stains permanently and completely so they won’t ruin your new paint job. Stain-blocking primers, like Bulls Eye 1-2-3, are also formulated to prevent rust formation on the primer film, so they’re great for painting railings and other metal surfaces.

• Primers make your colors look better. They hide previous colors-even dark reds and blues-and prevent them from showing through new paint. And because they create a sealed, stain-free surface, primers make paint colors look more vibrant and beautiful.

Tip from the pros: If you tint your primer toward the color of your paint, it’s likely you’ll use less paint.

• Primers prevent common paint problems. High-quality water-base primers, like Bulls Eye 1-2-3, dry to a flexible film that prevents common paint problems like cracking, peeling and blistering. Your paint job will be more durable-and last much longer.

House Painting Tips

Seasons wreak havoc on a home’s exterior. In fact, Americans spend over $4.8 billion annually on maintenance services. Spring is the ideal time for homeowners to plan the repainting of their homes. The exterior of your home is the first impression you give the outside world and a good paint job is critical to your home’s appearance.

Ed Waller, co-founder of Certa-Pro Painters, offers tips on painting the exterior of your home and ideas to make your job easier.

• First, evaluate the condition of your house. Look for bare wood, metal or masonry surfaces. That’s where paint is worn and you need a new coat, or you have other problems such as moisture that a professional painter should assess for you.

• Use a cleaning solution to remove dirt on siding. Scrub well and rinse thoroughly.

• Prepare your house well if you are repainting it. Some loose paint is obvious, some is hard to find by just looking at it.

• Buy the best paint possible for the exterior of a house. The best paint will withstand the elements better than a cheaper type and in the long run may actually save money. The same goes for brushes and rollers.

• Be sure to paint in the shade on a bright day. Painting in the sun can cause the paint to dry too fast and blister.

• Brush first, then roll. Paint the trim last.

Spray Makes Painting Easier

Painting can be an easy, economical way to spruce up your home, inside and out. Each year, millions of Americans put a new coat on their homes, touch up furniture, paint fences or decks. Apart from being tedious, it can be messy, take forever to complete and, in many cases, may not result in the smooth, professional finish you were hoping to achieve.

A new painting technology overcomes all this and at the same time saves you time and money. Touted as “The New Way to Spray,” High Volume/Low Pressure (HVLP) spray-painting systems make large or detail jobs faster, easier, more precise and more controlled than the traditional paintbrush, electric gun or compressor system. Manufacturers say HVLP users find painting friendlier and more enjoyable due to its efficiency in application and control-and no previous spraying experience is required.

The preferred choice of many Europeans, HVLP systems, from companies such as Earlex, Inc., use one-third less paint to do the job because of exceptional paint transfer efficiency, minimal over-spray, almost zero bounce back and less waste common with other methods.

These versatile systems let users spray any surface, from siding to decking, doors, walls and ceilings, furniture, wicker, fences, sheds, kitchen/bathroom tile-even flowerpots. The gun rarely clogs and cleanup is “faster than a paintbrush.”

HVLP systems are paint-friendly and can be used with latex, lacquer, varnish, enamel, oils, acrylic, eggshell, fence and deck stain, polyurethane, shellac and automobile paint. The best systems have lightweight guns that don’t vibrate in your hand and are generally quiet and easy to use. Proper protective clothing, such as a face mask and eye mask, are recommended.

Setup is simple. After filling the spray gun with paint, connect the hose and turn it on. With the Earlex system, a turbine motor feeds a high volume of air through the gun at low pressure. The airflow forces the paint from the cup to the nozzle, where it atomizes the paint into fine particles. The air jacket around the paint ensures that overspray is minimal and gives the user optimum control of the spray.

With most systems, paint volume is adjustable with spray patterns as fine as one inch, up to 12 inches wide. For best results, users should spray 10 to 12 inches from the object using a horizontal and then a vertical spray pattern. Round spray patterns are also available with some systems.