Maintaining Your Paint Job
Your team leader has walked you through the completed paint job after conducting a final inspection, and you are happy with the work―so now what?
“Now that you’ve taken the time to makeover your home, it’s important to take care of the work,” says David Garcia, Arclight Painting Production Manager. “There are a few simple and low-cost maintenance tips to improve the longevity of your paint job and keep it looking as fresh as the day it was painted.”
Your paint won’t look like it does now forever, but here are some things to make any paint job last for as long as possible:
Exterior Paint Maintenance
Mildew and Mold
Once exterior paint has weathered for a couple of years, the risk of mildew growth in shady and damp areas increases. This can dramatically reduce the longevity of your paint. If you find mildew, you can treat it by applying a 3:1 mixture of water to household bleach to the area using a brush or garden sprayer, letting it remain on the area for about 15 minutes. First protect any nearby plants and grass. Then, finally, rinse it thoroughly.
Dirt and Chalk
Airborne dirt often accumulates on exterior paint. The paint then darkens and is more likely to attract things like mildew and other unwanted pests. In addition, the natural weathering process of latex paints releases a chalky substance from the paint that results in faded-looking colors and unsightly water marks. For any issues involving dirt and chalk, scrubbing and power washing are the best fixes.
Cracking and Peeling
Because cracks can lead to even bigger problems in the future, such as peeling paint and rotting of wood, these are arguably the most important exterior paint conditions to check for and catch early on. Caulking compounds should be used to fill cracks that will appear around doors, windows, and trim. When it comes to peeling, scrape off the loose material and sand the area, then touch up with left-over paint.
Interior Paint Maintenance
Spots and Stains
Interior paint will inevitably accumulate spots and stains over time. Since most of the interior paints that we recommend are washable, if you find spots or stains, it’s important that you treat them immediately. Otherwise, they’ll get harder to remove the longer they stay there. Pay attention to high-traffic areas of the home, such as staircase walls, hallways, kitchens, and childrens’ bedrooms. Also examine areas where couches and chairs touch the walls. Lightly wash any affected areas with soap and water, or add dishwasher detergent to a damp sponge (not a scrubber) if deeper cleaning is needed. Be careful not completely scrub the paint off the walls.
Scrapes and Scuffs
Your home is meant to be live in! So, your walls will eventually get marked up a bit over time, especially if you have children or pets. Don’t worry. If you aren’t able to wash them off, your Arclight Painting team should have left behind some touch-up paint that is well-marked as to what goes where. Just find the right color and sheen for the wall that needs touching up and dab a little on until the mark disappears. You can use a small brush if you have one, the corner of a small sponge, or a disposable brush (like this one available at Home Depot) to apply the paint.
Warm and humid rooms such as bathrooms and basements can easily attract mold. At Arclight Painting we always use special mold-resistant paints in these rooms, but if you do find mold or mildew on a wall or ceiling, examine the area to determine the severity. Areas smaller than around nine square feet can be cleaned using a 1:4 ratio of bleach to water, but anything larger than that may need to be cleaned by professionals, primed with a special oil-base primer, and re-painted.
Rooms that get a lot of sunlight often suffer from fading paint, especially if they have been painted with darker colors. This can be partially avoided by investing in a higher quality paint beforehand. However, using shades or curtains to block incoming light, will also increase the life of your paint. If you don’t want to sacrifice the sunshine, you may want to consider tinting the windows with a UV film.
Most of these maintenance tasks can be done on your own. But our team of professionals are ready to make your life easier by providing any maintenance or other painting-related services your home may need. Schedule a free estimate now.