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Picking an Exterior House Paint Color

Exterior House Paint Color
July 5, 2022

Why do specific paint jobs peel and flake five years ago while others from the Reagan era appear as though they were applied just last week? The solution is deceptively straightforward: High-quality exterior paint lasts longer than inexpensive paint when correctly put over a well-prepped surface.

However, attempting to identify the exceptional items at the supermarket can be a sensory-overloading experience. Homeowners must pick from many lines from national brands and locally made goods in addition to considering the oil-vs.-water-based debate.

Additionally, while price often denotes the quality, certain exterior paints are priced at $40 per gallon, so basing decisions only on price might be costly. Fortunately, if you are aware of them, a few additional signs that will assist you in selecting the best paint.

So even if your next outdoor painting project is right around the corner or a few years away, keep reading to learn what independent researchers and industry insiders say distinguishes a great product. You'll also learn helpful advice on the crucial preparation procedure and the esthetic science of color selection.

Latex or Water-Based Paints

The superiority of oil-based or water-based paint has been the subject of a heated discussion for years. Alkyd paints and other oil-based materials can be cleaned with mineral spirits. Water is used to clean up water-based materials, which are now based on vinyl and acrylics but are still referred to as latex paints.

Even though the subject is still raised, water-based paints are the clear winner for home exteriors. According to research conducted at the Forest Products Laboratory (FPL) of the U.S. Department of Agriculture in Madison, Wisconsin, water-based paints expand and contract with the siding. They also permit the paint coating to be penetrated by water vapor produced within the home.

Oil-Based Paint

On the other hand, oil-based paints dry to a rigid covering that obstructs moisture. The effects can include apparent fissures as siding gives way and paint blisters as moisture trapped inside tries to escape. Because they contain rarer volatile organic mixtures than oil-based paints, water-based paints are also better for the environment.

How to Choose the Best House Paint Quality?

Any manufacturer's premium line will be more durable and have better coverage than its more affordable counterparts. It makes sense to purchase high-quality paint because the majority of the cost of painting is labor.

Other methods for selecting top-notch exterior paint from a selection include:

Proper Pigments

Good paint can be thoroughly covered in a single coat, thanks to its high-quality pigments. It is frequently necessary to apply multiple layers of paint when using cheaper dyes.

Considering the additional labor involved, purchasing inferior paint is not a wise economic move. Titanium dioxide is the ideal pigment. When the ingredients are mentioned on the can, look for them.

Higher Percentage Of Solids

After the paint has dried, the solids are left on the wall. The more solids present, the better because you'll have a denser, more lasting covering. Anything above 45 percent is regarded as good.

For instance, 52 percent of the weight of a gallon of Dulux Exterior Flat is made up of solids. It's best to avoid cheap paints with a high amount of solids because some businesses will add inexpensive fillers to boost the proportion of solids.

Although solids are often not mentioned on the label, you can still inquire with your paint merchant, request product data sheets, or connect to the internet and check the business's website.

All-Acrylic Binder

The pigments, mildewcides, and other substances that make up the actual paint film are held together by the binder. To find latex paint that is weather-resistant more effectively than vinyl or vinyl-acrylic, look for pigment that has an all-acrylic binder.

Many paint manufacturers employ all-acrylic for their premium exterior paints designed to withstand the environment and modified acrylic for their interior lines.

Make sure you select the appropriate paint for the surface you're covering as well. Wood and hardboard siding and trim can be painted using the majority of water-based exterior paints. They work well with most brickwork as well as vinyl and aluminum siding.

Finding the Right Hue for Your Home's Paint Colors

There are many white homes since selecting and coordinating colors can be nerve-wracking. Thankfully, paint firms are making this process less painful. Many include color cards with suggested siding and trim color pairings. Others have also developed alternative strategies.

For its Weather beater collection, Sears, for instance, studied the colors people liked and those found in nature. The company's research led to the creation of color schemes for each of the nation's three central geographic regions: the coasts, the Sun Belt, and the middle. The Home Depot's color specialists came up with 30 well-liked color combinations from its Behr brand, ranging from delicate pinks and peaches to strong rusts and blues.

Additionally, the Sherwin-Williams Preservation color palette provides a variety of traditional shades, whether you have a conventional or even modern classic home. The majority of paint retailers will assist you in winning the match. Some provide software for color matching. Dealers for Benjamin Moore, for example, would also scan a picture of your home and allow you to play around with color on a computer screen.

Alternately, you might select a house from the software that resembles yours. Whatever you choose, remember that your roof and landscaping won't alter, nor will those of the other homes on your street. Therefore, when making your pick, take into account these permanent hues. Additionally, Mark Knaebe, a scientist at the FPL, advises choosing softer tones. Dark shades absorb heat and are more susceptible to moisture issues.

How to Paint Your House's Exterior?

If misapplied, even the best exterior paint can deteriorate. Any untreated surface should always be painted with a primer to seal it off and create a surface on which topcoats can adhere. Because they better conceal bleed-through from wood knots, alkyd primers are preferable for bare wood; be sure the primer's label specifies explicitly that it is intended to stop bleed-through.

If knots are not a problem, water-based primers are a suitable option. Both forms of primer are relevant to water-based paints. Prime only as necessary while repainting. You may not even need to prime if the color isn't chipped or damaged. Porter Paints' Advantage 900 is made to cover any existing color without priming or sanding. Spot-prime the wood if you must scrape it down to bare wood.

The FPL advises priming, two coats of water-based paint, and dipping each piece of siding in a paintable water repellent before painting new construction. To decrease vapor, the lab also advises mounting siding on furring strips and creating a vented space behind it. To keep insects out, screen the bottom and seal it.

Make sure the painting contractor you employ adheres to the instructions provided by the paint manufacturer. For instance, to apply water-based paint, the temperature needs to be between 50° and 90°F. Additionally, the topcoat ought to be used two weeks after the primer. If you wait too long, the surface roughness of the primer will deteriorate, weakening the mechanical link between the two.

And if you use two topcoats (which is advised for a new building), the second one needs to be applied two weeks after the first. There are many different exterior paints available. Your paintwork will endure much longer into the next century if you know how to choose the best from a group of cans that all appear to be similar.

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