At Crowder Painting, we take the time to properly prepare all exterior surfaces before painting. A properly prepared surface accepts color better, lasts longer (even in harsh Rocky Mountain weather!) and looks better. It can even save you money on your energy bills!
I. Pressure Washing
Dirt, pollution, and other contaminants prevent paint from adhering well. The first step to any exterior paint job is a good pressure washing. In most cases, soaps and other chemicals are unnecessary. For very dirty surfaces, we may need to add certain chemicals to the pressurized water- typically an environmentally-friendly soap.
We understand that the health of your family, pets, and landscaping are important to you. If we feel chemicals are needed, we will inform you of the risks and include the specific types of chemicals and the reason for their use in our proposal.
II. Scraping and Sanding
A full evaluation of your home’s exterior is included with every proposal. The condition of your existing paint determines the amount of surface preparation. Multiple layers and cracked, flaking, or peeling paint must be removed and the surface smoothed before paint can adhere.
Although pressure washing usually removes some loose paint, most exteriors require some scraping, sanding, or wire brushing to remove loose paint. At Crowder Painting, we use a combination of techniques to achieve the best results. On smooth wood or masonite siding and trim, a combination of hand scraping and power sanding create the smoothest surface.
Heavily textured surfaces, such as stucco, rough cut cedar, or embossed siding cannot be sanded without losing their characteristic textures. These materials are hand scraped and/or wire brushed to remove loose paint while retaining the integrity of the siding.
III. Covering and Protecting
Here at Crowder Painting, we understand that there are many areas in your yard that you DON’T want painted! Protecting these surfaces from paint spatters and over-spray is an important part of the preparation process.
When possible, we will move toys, planters, and decorative items from the work area. Items that remain are covered with drop cloths or carefully masked. Horizontal surfaces, including driveways, sidewalks, and decks and patios are protected with heavy butyl-backed drop cloths. Windows and doors are covered with masking paper or plastic film.
Raw and unpainted areas are primed before caulking and painting. Not all primers are created equal; Crowder Paining uses ONLY the appropriate, best-quality primers! We will determine the best primer to use based on your individual situation.
- For most surfaces, fast-drying, stain-blocking primers are the best option. This is especially true for water damaged surfaces and high-tannin materials like redwood and cedar.
- On most surfaces, including wood and Masonite, Crowder Painting uses an alkyd, or oil-based, primer.
- Brick and stucco are sealed with an acrylic primer.
- Cinder block is primed with an acrylic block fill primer.
Not all areas require primer. If the underlying paint is in good condition, we will test for compatibility with the new paint and, when possible, apply the new color directly over the old.
V. Caulking and Reglazing
With Colorado’s wind, extreme heat and cold, and irregular moisture patterns, proper sealing is vital to the life of your paint job. As an added bonus, our attention to eliminating gaps and cracks in your home’s exterior can actually reduce your energy bills!
We fill gaps and cracks in fascia boards and trim, around windows, and soffits with elastomeric sealants before painting. Properly sealing these areas prevents moisture penetration, reduces drafts and heat loss, and prevents pests from entering your home.
Old windows may require reglazing; Crowder Painting always uses an oil based primer both before and after the application of new glazing.
VI. Paints and Coatings
Crowder Painting uses top of the line exterior paints for all projects. The opacity and heavy pigmentation of quality brands allows maximum coverage with fewer coats.
In most cases, paints are used full-strength, not diluted. If a thinner product is needed, we typically add a special paint conditioner to achieve the desired consistency. This ensures proper film thickness and long-lasting quality. Only in very rare instances will we add water (to acrylics) or mineral spirits (to alkyds) to paint.
In most cases, we will apply two (2) coats of color, allowing the first coat to dry completely before applying the second. If additional coverage is needed, we will apply additional coats to achieve a perfect result.
VII. The Main Color
In general, the main color is applied with a sprayer. For best results, each coat is applied according to the manufacturer’s specifications for thickness and spread rate.
The first color coat is back rolled or back brushed to create a uniform, long lasting finish. To do this, we use a roller or brush to push paint into cracks, and around nail heads. On lap siding, back brushing and back rolling help create a better seal where two boards meet.
The second coat is a finish coat. It is applied with only the sprayer. This creates a uniform sheen.
VIII. Trim, Windows and Doors
Two (2) coats of paint are applied to your home’s trim using a brush or roller. Sometimes, trim covers a large portion of the house; in this case, paint is applied with a sprayer.
Shutters and painted windows are brushed. Depending on the current condition and type of finish, doors are brushed, rolled, or sprayed. On new doors, spraying produces the smoothest finish.
IX. Touch Ups and The Final Walk-Around
At the end of every job, mistakes are touched up and we carefully inspect the entire exterior for uniformity and quality. We invite our customers to walk around the building with us. Once we are satisfied that the job meets our high standards, we’ll hand over all remaining paint in the original containers. The paint can be used later for reference and touch-ups.