Before choosing your paint, make sure you've read the Which Paint Where?
section. It will help you choose the right top coat, undercoat and primer for the job, so you'll get the results you want and the quality your efforts deserve.
General painting techniques and tools are covered in detail in the Tools and Techniques section. Please read this section carefully. It will save you time and help you achieve a professional finish. And remember, if you wouldn't put the washing out or wash the car - don't paint!
Primer and Undercoat
Now if your priming and undercoating has been part of your earlier surface preparation, just do a quick check for any new surfaces, or spots you may have missed. If you haven't primed or undercoated you may need to. For instance, if you are painting a light colour over a dark colour, you'll need to undercoat first to get the best opacity from your top coat. A comprehensive
guide to choosing undercoats and primers appears in the Which Paint Where? section.
Moving And Removing
If you haven't already done so during preparation, now is the time to take down as many of the fixtures and fittings as possible. If you have shutters or similar fittings it will be easier to take them off and paint them separately, at ground level. Tie back plants and branches so you have clear access to the areas to be painted. It's easier to tie back bushy shrubs if you wrap them in canvas or cloth before pulling them away from the house with staked ropes. This may be a good time to do the trimming and pruning you've been putting off for so long!
Your painting will be faster and cleaner if you spend a little time masking
first. Always remember to remove masking tape and materials as soon as
the paint is too dry to run. Removal later often lifts and breaks the dry paint, leaving a cracked and jagged edge.
Use wide masking tape or masking papers for protection around window
frames and woodwork. Window glass can be similarly masked for hassle-free painting, although many people find a sash cutter brush and a steady hand much faster.
The time-tested plan for house painting begins at the top and works down.
From roofs, gutters, fascias and eaves to walls, doors, windows and
baseboards. During each stage of the painting, again, start at the top and work your way down. Completely finish a wall, or whatever you are painting, before stopping. If this is not possible choose a natural break, for instance level with the top or bottom of window frames. This will help avoid unsightly joins.
Weatherboards are painted in two stages. Paint the underside of a board first, then paint the face. Paint several boards at a time then move your ladder over and continue along the rest of the wall. Then move down and paint along the next several boards. Always work quickly from an unpainted area to a wet painted area to avoid lap or join marks.
Casement windows, or windows that swing out or in, should be painted
opened. Paint the top, side and bottom edges first. Finish with the
crossbars, frames, architraves and sills.
These windows are best painted in three stages.
- Raise and/or lower the moveable sashes. Starting with the outer sash,
painting the crossbars, then the frame. Don't paint the bottom edge yet.
Next paint the inner sash in the same order, but don't paint the top edge
(if it is a moveable sash).
- Move the sashes to within 3cm of their closed positions. Paint the parts
of the sashes that were obstructed and the bottom edge of the outside
sash. Next paint the architrave and sill.
- Allow the paint to dry, then move one or both sashes as far down as they
will go. Paint the upper part of the tracks in which they slide. When that
paint is dry, raise the sashes and paint the lower section.
Paint these as you would any other flat surface. Paint the outer edges first, then fill in the central area, working from top to bottom. Finish by painting the architrave and jambs. An alternative to brushing is to roll the door, then quickly "tip off" vertically with light, smooth strokes of a brush to remove roller stipple.
Begin by painting the top panels then work your way down. For each panel, paint the moulding then the inside panel area.
After painting all the panels paint the remaining area, finishing with the door edges, jamb and architrave.
VERANDAHS & PORCHES
If you have railings, paint them first. Follow with the outside edges of the floor working towards the centre and ending at the door.
Paint the underside of each step's overhang, then the back panel, finishing with the tread. If the steps must remain in use, paint every second tread, allow to dry, then finish the remaining treads.
The Next Coat
Check the can for recoating times. These will depend on temperature and
humidity and the type of paint you have chosen.
When you've finished you'll have the rewarding experience of stepping back and admiring your handiwork. Please don't rush into it, or try to cut corners. Doing the job properly doesn't take much more time at all - the results are guaranteed to be better and with top quality materials they will last years longer.