Whether it’s a deck, pergola, or painting your home’s exterior it will last long with a good and well applied coat of paint. Getting a properly applied coat of paint that lasts for years requires a bit more than just wiping paint on the wood with a brush. Fortunately, outdoor painting that last doesn’t require that much more, mostly just patience and care.

In this Excerpt from the book Household Magic by Joan Wilen and Lydia Wilen the authors provide helpful tips and tricks for outdoor painting that will help keep your home and outdoor projects looking great for years to come.

PAINTING (Outdoors)

Tom Silva, a member of the home-improvement team on the television program This Old House, says, “A good paint job protects the outside of your house like a thin, waterproof raincoat.”

Mr. Silva also believes that a good paint job should last at least 10 to 15 years, depending on the location of the house and how well it is protected from the elements—such as sun, wind and rain. He suggests you follow two simple rules—prepare the surface well, and buy the best paint you can afford.

Here are more suggestions to get the job done efficiently…

When to Apply the Brush

The best time of day to paint outdoor surfaces is in the early afternoon, after the morning dew has completely evaporated.

Painting a Deck

It has been reported to us that it’s best to paint a deck using a broom that has nylon bristles with “flagged tips” (these are essentially split ends, which is a good thing for broom or brush bristles to have). Using the broom is easier and more efficient than using a paintbrush.

Repelling Insects

Since bugs can’t read a “Wet Paint” sign, add one tablespoon of oil of citronella (available at health-food and some hardware stores) to each gallon of paint, and stir it well. Your paint job should be bug-free thanks to the citronella.

Prepping Metal Surfaces

To reduce the possibility that paint will peel off a metal surface, wipe the clean, to-be-painted metal with a mixture of one part distilled white vinegar to five parts plain water. Let it air-dry, and then paint.

Painting Wrought-Iron Furniture

Dab paint on wrought-iron furniture with a regular kitchen sponge. You will be able to get the job done faster.

Painting Odd-Shaped Things

If you’re painting unusual configurations, like intricate stair railings or wrought-iron gates, it may be easier to use your hand than a paintbrush. Put on a long plastic or latex glove and wrap an old hand towel around your hand. Keep it in place with rubber bands. Dip your fingertips into the paint, distribute it over the rest of your palm and then massage/paint the odd-shaped whatever.


HANDy Paint Pail

Why did it take so long to come up with something so useful for the do-it-yourself painter? This pail provides an adjustable strap and magnet brush holder for easy, efficient painting.

Source: Handy Products.

For additional food tips and other advice for your home, purchase Household Magic from Bottomlineinc.com.

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