Exterior Paint Problems – Common Issues and Resolutions
- January 20, 2018
- Posted by: Neysa Watkins
- Category: Painting Blog
Exterior paint does a lot for your home. Not only does it look good, but it can also provided an extra line of defense against the weather and elements that otherwise would damage your home. But what happens when your paint starts to have problems? Here are some common issues and suggestions on how to deal with them.
Blistering is just how it sounds: small and medium size bubbles show up under the paint film, causing unsightly blemishes on your wood siding and trim. There are quite a few potential causes for blistering paint:
- The paint was applied in direct sun, on a hot surface, and this trapped solvent vapors as the paint dried too quickly
- The paint was applied to damp wood; in this case, moisture was trapped and expanded the paint film
- Dew, rain, or increased humidity occured after latex paint dried; this is especially troublesome if the latex paint was of poor quality or the substrate was not prepared appropriately before
- House moisture begins escaping through the walls because of poor home ventilation
What can you do about this? Thankfully, the solution is simple, if slightly labor intensive.
- Scrape away the affected paint and sand to bare wood
- Let the wood dry completely, then sand, prime, and paint out of direct sunlight and when the humidity levels are down.
- Use only a high-quality latex paint
- If your home has poor ventilation, then this issue should be repaired first. Check and repair any loose or missing caulk around windows and doors. You may also need to consider providing ventilation specifically for your siding
This rather interesting failure is when cracking occurs in the paint film. It often resembles a reptile’s skin, which makes it fun to look at but annoying to deal with. Alligatoring is often caused by:
- The second coat of paint was applied over the first coat of primer of paint before the first layer was fully dry
- The second coat of paint was applied over an incompatible paint; an example would be a glossy paint applied over a latex-based paint
- Oil-based paints naturally age and lose their elasticity; changes in temperature can then cause alligatoring
Repair is rather simple. Simply remove the old paint, and then sand, prime, and repaint with a flexible, high-quality, latex-based paint.
This defect occurs mainly on painted masonry; crusty white salt deposits bubble up through the paint film from the masonry beneath. This occurs due to salts in the brick or concrete dissolving in water and leaching up to the surface as the water evaporates. Some potential causes include:
- Poor paint surface preparation
- The migration of heavy moisture from inside the home through the exterior walls
- Inadequately waterproofed basements, allowing groundwater seepage
- Painting masonry before the concrete or mortar was fully cured and dried
- Cracks in the masonry allowing water to get in behind the stonework
For repair, consulting a specialist is often recommended or required, especially in the case of load-bearing structures like basement walls or retaining walls. However, some general repair suggestions include:
- Patching all cracks or missing segments of mortar in the walls, and cleaning all gutters and downspouts. Caulking joints around windows and doors may also help in the case of water behind the masonry
- Waterproofing the exterior basement walls
- Removing all efflorescence before repainting
There are too many cases to cover in just one blog post, so stay tuned in February for the sequel to this post!
If you have concerns about your exterior paint, contact Eagle Painting today! Their experienced professionals are here to help!