HOW OFTEN SHOULD YOU PAINT THE EXTERIOR OF YOUR HOUSE?
Replace your central air filter every 30 to 90 days. Replace your smoke detector batteries at least once a year. Repaint your house... how often?
The answer depends on several factors, of course, but if you want to keep a well-maintained and beautiful home, add routine house painting into your maintenance plan and budget. Read on to determine when you should plan on painting again.
The Material on the Outside of Your House
How often you paint the exterior of your house depends, in large part, on the materials on your house. Different materials require different maintenance schedules.
Wood siding - Plan to repaint every three to seven years, or stain it every four years.
Aluminum siding - Plan on painting aluminum siding every five years.
Stucco - Stucco can go five to six years between paint jobs.
Cement fiberboard siding - This newer material can last 10 to 15 years between paint jobs.
Painted brick - Painted brick only needs to be repainted every 15 to 20 years. Unpainted brick just needs to be cleaned, not painted.
Where Do You Live?
Climate matters when it comes to paint's durability. If you live near the coast, for example, where the exterior of your home takes a beating from sand, sun, and salty air, you'll need to repaint more frequently than a home in a more forgiving climate.
Watch for these signs that the exterior of your home needs to be painted, even if you haven't yet gone the suggested amount of years between paint jobs.
Exposed patches of wall
Chalky, powdery paint
There's no argument. A quality paint job, done with quality paint, will last longer. Trying to save a few dollar by doing it yourself when you don't really know what you're doing is going to cost you in the long wrong. Purchasing a lower-quality paint because it's cheaper is only going to cost you more money when you need to repaint too soon.
Why does quality paint matter on the exterior of your house? Since the house is not protected from the sun, the ultraviolet rays in the sun degrade the chemical compounds in paint. Dark paints can lighten quickly because of this. This happens more quickly with oil-based paints and with low-quality paints.
But updated, acrylic latex paints are more durable against this weathering. Quality acrylic latex paint is less likely to blister, crack, or harden over the years. It's even less likely to attract mildew growth.
Glossy and semi-glossy paints are durable, but expose flaws in the materials. Flat finishes don't expose imperfections, but they tend to run chalky over time. A satin finish, however, works well on many types of exteriors.
If you want a paint job to last a long time, prep work is just as important as the quality of paint and the experience of the painter. A house that is properly prepared will accept a paint job better -- and that paint job will last longer. The surfaces of your house need to be clean and well-sanded. Mildew and rot need to be removed, and cracks need to be repaired. This will ensure the paint can adhere to the entire surface for the long haul.
You can actually extend the life of your exterior paint job by spending time regularly maintaining the exterior of your home. Inspect the surfaces every year, looking for peeling, cracking, and moisture damage. Repair problems when you see them, and seal and caulk where needed. These minor repairs could help you go a bit longer in between paint jobs.