May is my favourite time of year. The days are longer, afternoons are warm and the evening still have a cool breeze. If you’re anything like me, you’re probably using the nice weather to catch up on those home projects but if you’re painting outside, there are a couple of things to keep in mind.
I’m an early riser so I love to get to work first thing in the morning but if you’re painting outside, wait until around 9 a.m. before picking up the paint brush. Did you ever notice how your car or bike is wet with dew when you get up? That moisture settles on the walls too and if you paint on a wet surface your paint will run and/or won’t try properly. So enjoy that cup of coffee and start painting in the late morning.
The days are longer this time of year too and I love taking advantage of that extra daylight to garden at the end of the day but I try to be done with any exterior painting around 3 p.m.. It might seem like that’s a waste of the afternoon but remember that morning dew? When the warm daytime air hits the cooler evening air there’s a lot of moisture. You want to give your paint a chance to dry well before all that water settles on your freshly painted surface and causes it to blister.
What else can cause paint to blister? Painting in direct sunlight or on a hot surface. I love sunshine but paint doesn’t. When you’re painting make sure to follow the shade throughout the day. Not only will you stay more comfortable, your paint won’t burn or blister. On a hot surface, it will set up too fast and will start to smear giving you unattractive brush or pull marks.
Before painting make sure to check the weather! Passing showers are not uncommon and you don’t want all that hard work to wash away with the rain. Generally, painting is not recommended within 24 hours of possible precipitation. Remember, just because the surface of your paint is dry to the touch it doesn’t mean that it’s dry all the way through and a little rain can ruin your paint job with blisters. This is especially frustrating when you’re taking on a large project like painting the exterior walls.
Finally, the most important part of any project is preparation. Before painting, make sure you start with a clean, sound surface. Scrape off all loose paint, power wash the walls from dirt, mold and salt deposits, then seal any bare walls or trouble spots.
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