Full prime on all exterior surfaces like siding and trim prior to top coating them with a quality latex is almost always a great idea. If it were up to me, most exterior paint jobs would have full primer and 2 coats of the highest quality latex, but often price is an overriding factor. The fact is that labor is the single biggest cost on a paint job, so I encourage customers to go with the highest grade paint and a full coat of primer should be considered. Is it absolutely necessary? No but it will add to the longevity of a paint job.
Being in business for as long as we have, I can look back at previous work and see that the exterior residential paint jobs that have lasted 15+ years (including my own home) have 2 things in common. Full primer and high end top coats.
The thickness of the layers of paint on the exterior to your home are a major factor on how good the paint acts as a barrier to the elements and time. When you add a full prime to the package you are building up the thickness or mils of that barrier. In the United States paint film thickness is measured in mils. One mil equals 1/1000 of an inch. A piece of duct tape is about 4 mils thick. Gorilla brand duct tape is about 16 mils thick.
Keep in mind that primer does a lot more then just building up those mils. It seals, bonds and levels out the porosity of the substrate.
There are times when full prime should not be considered. For example paint can reach what is called critical thickness. That is when forces causing the paint to peel away from the siding exceed the bond holding the paint film against the surface. If there are many layers of paint on a older home then removal of those layers should be considered. That is time consuming and expensive but sometimes necessary.
Cabinet painting is very popular today. The trend has been away from stained cabinets and toward painted. Sometimes homeowners wants to coordinate other kitchen remodeling around the same time as the cabinet work but are not sure on the scheduling. Is it better to have the cabinets done first and then get new countertops? or do you want to get that new floor prior to having the cabinets sprayed?
There are several different approaches that be taken when doing a cabinet painting project. All things considered I prefer to be the last trade on the project but we can usually accommodate most scheduling. If you have your cabinets done first you might expect to have areas that will need to be touched up from possible damage from other trades work. This is something that can occur when for example you have a new counter top installed, etc.
What usually does not work is having other trade work go in tandem with the work by the paint contractor. Sawdust and grout don’t go well with paint finishes. Paint contractors need a clean environment to work in and spend a fair amount of time cleaning and vacuuming an area prior to getting to work.
Water Stains. Everyone has some sooner or later. Usually on the ceiling and this is a common time of the year (February) to notice one. They can be caused from several different problems. A leaky roof or ceiling vent. Condensation problems, plumbing or venting issues, etc.
Once you have identified the cause of the problem and corrected it, it is time to fix that unsightly stain. You want to make sure the stain area is dry and that there is no damage to the drywall or as the case might be, the plaster. If the area is dry and undamaged, you will want to protect the area (floor) or surrounding wall from over-spray. The best sealer to use is BIN.
I like to spray two to three light coats over the stained area, making sure each coat is dry before respraying. If you happen to have left over or know the correct ceiling paint (If it has been painted) you can repaint only that small area. If you don’t know if it has been painted or don’t have any leftover ceiling paint, by sealing it you have greatly reduced its appearance and can wait until you have time to repaint the ceiling or of course you can call in a professional to do it for you.
When choosing a paint the smart money is on the good stuff. A very simple guideline is what it costs. I have always found it fascinating that we spend $300 a gallon for the paint used to paint our cars and $30 a gallon for the paint we use on our homes. Spend as much as you can afford on a quality product!
Here is a good example of how you can save on a gallon of paint and it ends up costing you.
Accent Color Base
Here are two quality coatings. Both are Pittsburg Paint products. The one on the right Speedhide is a good product used by many paint contractors. Most contractors will pay in the mid teens, say $15, a gallon. The one on the left Accent Color Base is a great product but costs almost double.
They are the same color. Both are quality acrylic latex products but the one on the left is designed for high hide/coverage. So with the Accent Color Base 2 coats will get the job done. The Speedhide will take multiple coats which means much much more time. In this example it took 8 coats to cover a grey color. That’s not a typo. 8 coats. So from a contractors perspective if you are paying someone $18 an hour to paint those 8 coats guess what saving money ended up costing you. If you are doing the work yourself, just imagine the time investment for those extra coats of paint.
This happened to be a small commercial job that gave us the opportunity to test the difference between the two. My guess was it would be 4 coats of Speedhide. I’m glad we planned on using the Accent Color Base.