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Tips For Painting An Old House

Unless you live in a brick house, odds are that your cladding is coated either in paint or stain, both of which need to be maintained. Both play a vital role in helping the cladding to remain weathertight.

As well as washing them regularly, coatings must be redone every few years to maintain their performance.

It is important to be aware that modern New Zealand-made coatings are amongst the world’s best. For this reason when painting an older property you need to be aware of how many previous coats you are going over.

Will the current products on the surface hold the new coating?
The answer may be as simple as having a close look at the current surface. If it shows signs of cracking, bubbling or peeling it should be completely stripped back.

If it looks sound how do I test it?

  • With a Stanley Knife or similar, scribe a crosshatch on the surface at a number of different locations, especially on the most weathered side of the property.
  • Place a good quality tape over the scribes and ensure it is firmly on the surface.
  • Pull the tape off the surface.

If any material comes off with the paint, the surface will need to be completely stripped back and coated again.

Do any of the layers include a product that contained lead?

Why ask this question? Many older products contain lead. Whilst encapsulated this is not an issue, but the last thing a property owner wants is to find this poisonous material introduced into their property and surroundings.

If your property is more than twenty years old, it would pay to check by purchasing a test kit from your local decorating specialist.

The Department of Labour produce guidelines on how to manage material containing lead.

As this is a critical Health and Safety Issue, you may prefer to engage an accredited removal specialist.

With these questions answered, you are now ready to paint. Let’s hope the weather holds!

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Find out what you can do to be Life Cycle Costing savvy in the articles linked below.


Tips For Painting An Old House
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FPB - Future Proof Building Principals
Energy Smart Health & Safety Life Cycle Quality Smart & Secure Sound Control Spatial Design Sustainability