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Tips & How-Tos

How to prepare exterior surfaces

1. Put drop cloths in place under areas being painted.

2. Make sure all surfaces are smooth and free of cracks. Countersink exposed nailheads and spot prime.

3. Fill nailhead depressions, cracks and imperfections with putty. Scrape out old caulk, re-caulk and prime. When working on bare wood, prime before re-caulking.

4. Lightly sand glossy, shinny surfaces for better adhesion. Sand "mill glaze" off new siding for proper adhesion.

5. Remove salt accumulations under eaves by washing.

6. Clean off dust and dirt with cloth or soft brush. Remove chalk residue with brush or water. Remove any mildew.

7. Prime all exposed areas where paint has worn thin, peeled, or blistered (refer to surface problems and solutions). Allow all areas that have been primed to dry thoroughly (refer to directions on can).

8. Clean and prime gutters and downspouts. New aluminum gutters and downspouts are factory coated and should remain in good condition for several years. On previously painted gutters and downspouts, remove rust and peeling paint by scraping or wire brushing. Sand edges smooth from sound paint to bare spots. Wash protected areas - under eaves - with a strong stream of water from a garden hose. Apply self-priming Ironclad® Latex Low Lustre Metal & Wood Enamel when surface is dry. New galvanized gutters and downspouts are coated with a fabricating oil that must be removed prior to painting. Use Benjamin Moore® M83 Oil & Grease Emulsifier to remove. Prime with a latex product only.

Special Steps for Special Surfaces

Brick and masonry can be streaked with a white powder or efflorescence. Remove this with wire brushing and scraping. Appropriate measures should be taken to eliminate the cause of efflorescence. Be sure newly constructed block and stucco surfaces are allowed to cure for 30 to 60 days before priming and top coating.

Source: Benjamin Moore 2002