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How do I prepare and finish my decking areas?

How to paint a house exterior

Painting a home’s externals can be a lengthy topic of discussion and depending on the material they’re made from and their current condition, the prior preparation and painting method will vary.

There’s a few general rules that apply to all external painting though, which we’ve outlined below.

  1. Do the proper preparation

Go over the wall and give it a weatherproof seal by filling any holes with putty, and gaps using a caulking gun – use a scraper to smooth the surface.  Once finished, give the wall a light sand to smooth rough areas, dirt, imperfections, and peeling paint.

  1. Choose the right paint

First and foremost, make sure the paint you select is external paint. Generally, acrylic paints (water based) are best as enamel paints (oil based) can become brittle and chalky as they age.

  1. Painting

Make sure you properly stir the paint prior to using it. It’s also best to keep 2 brushes on hand – having one in a jug of water so you can swap brushes when one dries out.

In warmer climates, the sun can accelerate the drying process which can cause flaking so it’s best to follow the shade if you can. Start on the side of the house that is shielded from the sun and work your way around as the sun does.

Start in the top corner to avoid any distinctive drying marks as you work your way across. You can start on the second coat approximately 2 hours after finishing the first coat.

How do I prepare my decking areas for applying stain?

Before you jump right in and start applying the stain, make sure the deck is clean (free of dust, dirt, mildew etc), and dry. You’ll also need to check the weather forecast to ensure that you’re not expecting any rain, extreme heat or dust storms – as not only will you have to re-clean the deck, you’ll also ruin the stain if you plan on starting immediately after cleaning.

Step 1: Remove all outdoor furniture, dog beds, plants, toys or anything else laying around. Thoroughly sweep and remove all leaves, surface dirt and other debris.

Step 2: Properly clean the deck using generous amounts of a specially formulated deck cleaner with a roller or pump sprayer making sure it stays wet at all times. This type of cleaner has strong chemicals so wear protective glasses and clothing to avoid any contact.

Step 4: Allow to set for approximately 15 minutes, ensuring the deck remains wet while the cleaner soaks into the timber.

Step 5: Work the cleaner into the surface using a stiff, synthetic-bristle brush. Scrub thoroughly to remove all residue.

Step 6: Using a garden hose or power washer, rinse the cleaner from the timber completely.

Step 7: Once the deck is completely dry, lightly sand the deck to remove any remaining residue.


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