One of the best ways to refresh the exterior of your home is to paint it. This lower cost option will make it possible for you to save money while enhancing your property’s curb appeal. However, before you make the leap and begin painting, you need to make some preparations first.

One of the main things to keep in mind when preparing an exterior for painting is that it needs to be cleaned. If a surface is not clean, the paint you apply will not adhere smoothly or attractively. In order to make sure your efforts toward painting are not wasted, you need to pressure wash the surface. Always wear eye protection when you are using this washing technique as pressure washing is rather intense.

Do Not Use Concentrate Steam When Pressure-Washing an Exterior

You also need to make sure you use the right nozzle. Do not use a concentrated steam as this type of moisture can seep under siding that is lapped or damage wood. Windows have also been broken when pressurized steam was used while cleaning an exterior.

If an area does not display an excessive amount of flaking or peeling, a traditional garden hose and scrub brush should suffice. Choose a cleaning agent, such as trisodium phosphate (TSP), for general cleaning purposes. If mildew is present, you want to employ a detergent that contains an ingredient that will get rid of the mildew. Otherwise, you can also combine three quarts of water with bleach. When you have finished cleaning the surface, rinse off the residue.

Getting Rid of Peeling or Flaking Paint

In order to scrape away flaking or peeling paint, use a wire brush. Use the brush in the spots you cannot reach with your hose or pressure washer. Only scrape away the loose paint. If some of the paint is intact, you can paint over it after you sand down the surface.

After you have completed scraping away any loose paint, you will need to repair any surface defects. Use a compound designed for this purpose. You can follow up by sanding after the compound dries. Before painting the exterior, you also want to get rid of the old caulk. After removing caulk, you will need to re-caulk the window sills and trims.

Place Drop Cloths around the House

The windows need to be repaired and re-puttied as well. After the new putty is applied, it will be ready to paint. However, before you grab a brush or paint roller, you need to place drop cloths around the house. Use such coverings to safeguard your lawn and flowerbeds. You also need to cover your shrubs and make sure the coverings are secure.

As a final preparation, prime the surface anywhere that repairs have been facilitated. Before you begin painting, make sure you have enough paint. Typically, two coats of an exterior paint are suggested for extra protection and durability. You can also wash the surface easier if two coats are applied. Never use a high-gloss paint on an exterior wall surface. Instead, select a semi-gloss or satin finish. It’s better to use a satin or flat paint on wood siding. Semi-gloss paints work well on exterior gutters, trims, or doors.