Reeling in the Years

Who knew this Steely Dan song could be used in reference to house painting? It’s true that your exterior house paint has been stowing away the time. 5 years ago it was beautiful. The best exterior house paint glistening in the sunlight, the satisfaction of a new paint job (DIY or professional), and an overall happy home. It wasn’t meant to last. Time wears down everything, including house paint, especially when exposed to the elements. Keep reading to find out how you can beat time and nature!

Learn how much an exterior house painting costs >>

The Signs of the A-paint-alypse

Here are some signs that can tell you it's time to repaint the outside of your house:

Amount of Time

Gollum's riddle in "The Hobbit" told about how time wears everything down. This goes for paint as well. The good news is that it wears down paint differently depending on the building material:

Brick- 15-20 years depending on upkeep and location. Unpainted brick houses only need occasional cleaning.

New Building Materials- Much less often. Cement fiberboard siding can last 10-15 years before needing another paint job.

Aluminum Siding- About 5 years.

Stucco- Around 5-6 years.

Wood Siding- Between 3-7 years, 4 years if stained.

The average repainting usually needs to happen every 5 years. It can change depending on location, climate, weather, and how well the previous paint job was done. You'll want to know how to choose the right paint so it'll last as long as possible. Paint sees a lot of wear and tear, as you'll find out in the next section.

Wear and Tear

Paint, paint, bubble and crack, peel away until the last. If you're seeing any of these signs, it's time for a paint job. Wear and tear of this nature often happen because of an improper job, dry rot, mold, or time and nature have begun to work. When you see these, fix them immediately. The longer the problems sit there, the more damage there is, and the harder and more expensive they are to fix.

Find out from Dan Sherwood why painting a house can be so expensive >>

Fading Facades

It's a slow process watching your exterior house paint fade. The vibrancy is gone and your home looks worn down and tired. You can fix that with a new paint job. Give your house energy and life with new colors! Lighter colors don't normally fade as quickly, so if you've got a darker exterior color be on the lookout for fast fading. Also, watch out for caulk complications.

Cracking Caulk

When the caulk's coming off it's time to paint. Over time caulk becomes brittle, losing its elasticity. This causes it to crack and break, which can make your house look like it's got dandruff. Give your house its Selsun Blue with a new paint job!

Gaps or Shrinkage

Is your home made of boards? Watch out! Boards tend to shrink and create gaps in the siding. This can be due to dry rot, meaning moisture is getting in the wood. It's best to get a professional to assess the damage before anyone tries to fix it.

You've Won!

The correct knowledge can lead to victory. You know how long it can take before a new paint job can be needed and also what problems to look out for. All you need now is to decide on a color, paint type, and if it'll be a DIY project or a hire a professional paint contractor job. If you decide to hire a professional, avoid bad contractors who are in over their head. Conquer time, beat nature, and have a beautiful paint job for your home.

Learn how to conquer varnished wood, without tearing it out >>