The exterior of our home is subject to all types of weather; from UV rays, to hail and rain, even snow in some climates. This can make any exterior paint start to look faded or weathered. The best way to combat this is by using the best exterior paint for the material you are painting. Quality paint can last for years and make any home look refreshed.
How to choose the best exterior paint for your home
One of the first things you notice about a home is its curb appeal. Having a fresh coat of paint on your home is a great way to step up the curb appeal and help with equity as well. Here are some things to consider before buying exterior paint;
Durability - Latex and acrylic paint have increased in popularity recently due to the low amount of chemicals or VOCs as well as how well they stand up against the elements. They are thicker and more sticky then oil based paints so they adhere better to most materials. Oil based paints are more durable than acrylic or latex but can yellow quicker and contain a higher amount of VOCs. You will want to apply at least two coats of paint to ensure its durability as well. With exterior paint cheaper is not better. Using high end quality paint will ensure longer lasting results and a smoother finish.
Sheen - In a previous blog, How to choose the best interior paint color, we discussed the different types of sheens and how each one looks different. The same applies to exterior paint. The higher the gloss of paint the more durable and washable, however high gloss also shows more flaws in the surface such as rough spots. Satin or eggshell will be durable, easy to clean and cover up flaws or imperfections but may not look as smooth on certain surfaces. See below for what paint works best with your home's material.
Drying time - different paints will have different dry times and ensuring the first coat of paint is dry before applying a second coat is key to a quality finish. Most latex paints will dry within a couple hours but a second coat should not be applied for 4-6 hours to be safe. Oil based paints can take up to 6-8 hours to dry and usually takes 24 hours before you can apply a second coat. Make sure to read the paint label as it will give a better guide of dry times and when to apply a second coat.
When to paint - exterior paints will not stick to a wet surface, so always make sure there is no rain in the forecast for at least a week or more. Temperatures between 50 and 90 degrees with low humidity also help to get the best results.
Materials you need to paint the exterior of your home
Before you begin painting your house, you will need a few things to help make sure the job gets done efficiently and is effective. Here are a few things you will need on hand;
Sandpaper - Any old or flaking paint will need to be removed. If your home was built after 1978 then a scraper or or sander will do the trick. If your home was built prior to 1978, it may contain lead and therefore should be tested prior to starting the job. If lead is found you will want to hire a professional to remove the lead based paint for your safety.
Pressure washer - you will want to remove any dirt or debris from the surface of your home and let it dry completely. This will help ensure the primer can adhere better and won’t cause any rough spots. A pressure washer works best but if you do not have one you can use a hose and a long handled brush with warm soapy water.
Sealant - remove any broken siding or wood and then use a sealant in any crevice or divot to make sure the surface is smooth. You may want to replace all the sealant around the trim and windows as well at this time.
Painters tape - trim, windows and doors will all want to be taped to ensure you are not painting anything that you don't want to.
Primer - All surfaces will need a primer to fill in any divots or imperfections. This will allow a smooth surface to paint on and allows the paint to grip better. We recommend buying paint first and then looking at the paint can to see what primer the manufacturer recommends. Some primers work best when used with a particular type of paint. For best results make sure the primer is labeled for exterior use and it does not have stain in it which will affect the color paint you use. Oil primers still work best however water based primers have lower VOCs.
Paint brush - exterior paint is best applied with a brush versus a sprayer. It will give a more even coat and fill in any imperfections better. A wide brush with straight bristles will work best for large flat areas. Just as with the paint itself, you want to buy high end brushes so it will give better results.
Exterior paint color trends in 2022
According to an article from Better Homes and Gardens, these are the top trends for exterior paint in 2022:
Earth tones - nature inspired colors are great for any home. Rich browns, warm olive greens and stone gray allow you to blend in naturally with your surroundings.
All black exterior - all black exteriors come across as modern and make any light color trim pop. It also looks amazing against a nice landscape.
Charcoal - Deep gray feels warm and inviting and is a great way to test warm colors on trim and doors.
Warm whites and creams - Bright white is on its way out and a warmer or shaded cream is taking its place. It creates a warmer hue to the entire exterior.
Vibrant greens - darker and deeper colors are on trend and deep olives and warm green with gray undertones are what every gardener wants.
Gray green - more of the nature inspiration, grays with green hues are warm and look lovely on any material.
Classic navy - this color is both classic and contemporary. With how well it works with other colors it is sure to be a top trend this year.
Doors and trim - Don’t forget the trim and door of your home can carry just as much weight as the paint color of your home. Black exterior with contrasting color doors as well as white houses with rose colored doors are definitely in style.