Taking a close look at your siding will give you all the information you need to decide if it’s time to paint your house. Take a walk around using the following information.
The most obvious sign is peeling paint. If your window sills or siding are actually peeling you waited to long and need to call a painting contractor today. Very often one side of your house will receive more exposure to sun, wind and/or rain and snow and will be most in need of painting. This will be the side where the paint begins to show signs of wear first. Your peeling window sills undoubtedly get a lot of sun. Peeling paint allows water to seep into the wood or siding beneath and can cause the wood to rot. If left unpainted you will have to pay for repairs as well. Preferably, you want to paint before the last coat of paint starts to peel.
If the paint on your house is not peeling or checking (spidery cracks that happen before peeling), it may still be time for a fresh coat of exterior paint. Look closely at the siding paint. Does it look chalky? Is their a whitish cast to the paint and when you rub your fingers across it they pick up a bit of residue? This tells you the paint is beginning to break down and it’s time to repaint.
Another thing to look for is wood rot. Are there soft places in your corners boards? This will be found typically wherever they are exposed to a lot of moisture, such as at the bottom near the base of a downspout. Press against the wood and see if there is any give to it. If so, the wood should be replaced as soon as possible and two coats of paint applied to seal the wood. If left unprotected the area needing repair will just enlarge. Window trim and sills are another place where wood rot often occurs as well as door sills.
If possible, when you purchase a house, ask the seller when they last painted the exterior and what type of paint they used. Find out also how many coats of paint were applied. Depending on the quality of paint they used, and how many coats were applied, the house will need repainting anywhere from five to ten years or less. If you purchase a new home, be aware that they are often sprayed with a low grade paint and many need painting within three years.
Keeping the exterior paint of your home in good condition will prevent the need for replacing siding and sills due to wood or siding deterioration which will occur when moisture is allowed to seep beneath paint. You will actually save money in the long run by being proactive and keeping your paint in good condition.