Blue house with pink door

A coat of paint can do wonders for the exterior of a house, shed or decorative structure in the yard. It is amazing how different your house can look with a simple touch of paint that is easy to apply and relatively inexpensive. When painting small wooden features on the outside of your home or an entire structure made of wood, it is important that you take the right steps to ensure that your paint job withstands weather and time.

The right look

When deciding to paint exterior wood on your home or another structure, think about how you want the wood to look. Look at other houses in the neighborhood or in town to see what colors you like. Do you want your house or structure to stand out or blend with other houses? Do you want to emphasize certain wooden features on your home, such as pillars, railings or window shutters? Once you decide how you want your home or wooden structure to look, you can begin the next steps of exterior painting.

Preparing the wood

Preparation is key to long-lasting, exterior color on wood materials. If you are painting over an old coat of paint that is peeling or chipped, it is vital that you scrape the shavings off before applying a new coat. Use a putty knife or a scraper to get off as much old paint as possible. After you remove the old, chipped paint, use a mild detergent and a scrubbing brush to wash the scraped area. After washing, rinse the area thoroughly and check to see if any new paint has loosened. Again, remove any newly loosened paint with a scraper. Next, roughen remaining existing paint with sandpaper to remove the sheen of old paint, allowing for better adhesion of new paint. Finally, wash and rinse the entire surface once more. Give time for the wood to dry before applying primer or paint.

Apply primer

It is suggested that you apply primer before paint because primer is excellent for getting paint to adhere to your wooden surface. It is also ideal to use primer if you are painting your wooden structure a lighter color and the old color was dark. This stops the dark color from showing through and usually results in less time spent painting several coats. If you are painting a large area, you can use a paint sprayer to apply the primer. Make sure that you do not miss any areas. The areas you miss are more likely to rot or peel over time.

Paint finish

When determining the paint finish, there are several options to consider. You may want a gloss paint for high traffic areas. It has a sleek look and resists scuffs although it is prone to show imperfections in the wood or material. Other choices include semi gloss, satin and flat. The semi gloss is less glossy, the satin has a low luster and the flat paint hides lots of imperfections and is easy to touch up for quick maintenance.

The exterior creates the first and last impression of your home. Adding paint to your outdoor wooden structures can make your home more welcoming and beautiful than you ever imagined. By taking a few important steps, you can ensure that your wooden paint remains beautiful for years to come.