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Exterior House Paint Surface Preparation: What Do I Need To Know?


Repainting the outside of your home can not only make it look new and fresh, but also protects it from the elements. By choosing the right paint, and applying it correctly, your home can have many years of protection.

However, if you fail to prepare the surface of your exterior walls correctly, you may find that all your hard work comes to nothing, and the paint you apply flakes, peels and cracks.

Our guide to preparing the walls of your home for painting will ensure your paint job looks great for many years to come….

Why Paint Your Home?

Most people will initially decide to paint their home because they want to improve how it looks. This is a very good reason for doing so, as estate agents estimate that a freshly painted home can enjoy a 20% increase in its value.

But it doesn’t all come down to looks. Your home, whether it is brick or wood, needs to be protected from the elements; something which can be easily achieved with the right type of paint.

Paint is waterproof , and, therefore, prevents water getting into your walls; however, not all paints are alike when it comes to how effective they are at reducing moisture on your walls.


Before pressing ahead with painting, it's crucial that you mask and prime the designated areas-as well as conducting any preliminary repairs 

Removing Old Paint: The Process

The paint that is currently on your walls is likely to be old and tired, and, in many cases, flaking off or peeling. This is not a good surface for painting over, as paint will not adhere to a flaky surface.

It may not be possible to remove all of the old paint, but you must remove any that is peeling or flaky. The paint can be removed in three main ways:

● Scraping: By using a paint scraper, paint can be removed effectively. A scraper will allow you to remove the top layers – especially where it is already starting to lift. This is hard work, but should be done thoroughly. By sharpening your scraper regularly, the job will be made easier.
● Sanding: Areas where the paint is still well attached can be sanded back using high grade sandpaper. Work down to smaller grades to achieve a smooth finish. A belt sander is effective on window frames and other wooden areas.
● Pressure Washing: Detailed pressure washing can also help to remove paint. It is highly important to make sure that the walls are dry after it has been pressure washed. Pressure washers work well on larger areas, such as brick walls, where scraping is too difficult.

If you live in an older property, the paint that is on your walls could contain lead. When removing old paint, it makes good sense to protect yourself from this harmful mineral.

You should also put down drop cloths to capture fallen old paint, and dispose of it carefully. Try not to let paint enter the watercourse.


The success of the final result lies in the preparation. Once a uniform surface is achieved, and the areas properly primed, you're ready to begin!

Exterior House Paint Success: It's All In The Preparation!

Like most things in life, the secret of a successful result lies in the preparation. Contrary to popular belief, there is far more to an exterior paint job than initially imagined.

You should start by examining your external walls, inspecting them for signs of algae and moss, as well as breaks in the mortar, or hairline cracks in the bricks. Any damage needs to be addressed before you proceed.

A powerful jet wash will help loosen any dirt and debris-avoid chemical cleaners at all costs, as some may react badly with the bricks, leading to leaching.

During inspection, you should also pay attention to any additional faults with your frontage, such as leaky windowsills, or peeling paint on the frames. In these instances, bonding glue and epoxy wood filler should do the trick.

If water is leaking in, repairs will also be required before priming. Getting rid or mould and mildew is relatively easy; however, if you fail to address the root cause of the issue, it will inevitably resurface.

Following this, you should caulk, mask and prime the designated surface. Take your time with this part of the process; the success of the final result depends on the skill of the preparation. Once a uniform surface is achieved, and the areas properly primed, you're ready to begin!


Once the preliminary prepwork's complete, it's time to get painting! Always apply a minimum of two coats to ensure total protection!

Applying New Paint: Step-By-Step Actions

Step 1: Fix Any Damage

Once all of the paint has been removed, it is easy to see where the walls will need to be repaired. This may include: cracks in the masonry, rotten sections of wood, holes and cracks where wood joins around window frames, and loose fittings, such as downpipes and lighting.

These cracks and holes can lead to moisture coming into the home, which left unaddressed, can cause damp, mould and mildew. It can also affect the insulation in your cavity walls, rendering it ineffective.

Most of this type of damage can be repaired by using the right kind of filler. Large, rotten sections of wood may need to be cut away, and new wood spliced in. Masonry may need to be repainted, with the current grout removed, and new grout added. You may wish to get a professional in to do these jobs for you.

Step 2: Seal And Prime

At this stage, you may want to protect the walls by adding a layer of insulation coating to prevent any future issues. A hydrophobic coating is a great idea, as it is designed to prevent moisture entering the walls, and can therefore protect the exterior from cracking, and the interior from damp.

If you are deciding to use a normal exterior paint, you can also use a primer at this stage. Paint does not adhere well to fresh wood, so a primer is an essential step.

Always choose the right primer for your exterior needs, and for the type of paint you will be using as the final coat.

Step 3: Paint Away!

Now that all the hard work is done, you can paint your home using your chosen paint. It is important to choose the right paint for the job, and to use the best quality you can afford.

This means choosing a paint designed for wood where appropriate, and a masonry paint for brick. Yo may also have metal or plastic pipework and special paints for these exist too. You should apply a minimum of two coats, and ensure that all of the surface is covered, to provide the protection that it needs.


A new concept of exterior coatings, hydrophobic paints come in both clear and coloured varieties, enabling you to achieve the look you desire!

Hydrophobic Paints: Premium Property Protection

Even the very best exterior paint job will only last a few years before it starts to look dirty, cracked, peeling, or just plain dull. You will then need to start the process all over again.

However, it is possible to choose an exterior coating that will protect your home, make it look great, and reduce the repainting time to as long as 15 or 20 years.

Hydrophobic paints are a new concept of exterior coatings that are either clear or coloured to give the exact look you want. Many people prefer their brickwork to be on show rather than painted over, and this offers protection, without ruining that traditional look.

They are primarily designed to protect your home from moisture that can enter the walls via small cracks and holes, or can simply soak into the exterior material. This water can cause all kinds of problems inside your home including: damp, mildew and mould.

On the exterior of your home, moisture can seep into cracks, and then when frozen, can cause those cracks to get much larger. It can also destroy the surface of bricks and wood, and cause your paintwork to begin to fail.

Avoiding moisture on your walls should a priority for any homeowner. A hydrophobic paint can help. This is an insulative layer that is still breathable, and allows moisture that is already in the walls to escape.

It also seals small holes and cracks, and provides a good base for paint. You can also buy a hydrophobic paint that can be applied directly, and will achieve the dual purpose of making your home look fresh while protecting it against inclement weather.

Seeking out a weatherproofing solution that actually works? Exterior wall paint enables you to achieve this aim. Learn more about how this revolutionary new product can keep your masonry looking ship shape today, by calling 0800 1700 636, or by simply clicking the button below!