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Common Prep Work for Most Paint Jobs 

Prep work is essential to a paint job lasting its longest. Whether you are doing the job yourself or having a contractor do it, make sure to pay close attention to what prep work is being done. The basics to prep work for PAINT is: Pressure wash, scrape, sand, caulk, prime and then paint. There is different prep work for application of stains. The pressure wash cleans all dirt, mildew and mold residue off the the surface being painted. This ensures the paint adheres as best as possible.
Scraping pulls most of the failing paint away from the surface. This is the weakest points in the existing coat so it is important to take them off so it doesn't fail in the near future. Sanding can be mostly visual preference in this case but it does help discover weak points in the existing coating. Essentially sanding flattens the edges of the failing coating so it isn't such an eye sore when it is repainted. 

Caulking cracks is very important because it block water from entering the boards and rotting them from the inside out. Caulk and cracks that were caulked before and any holes or cracks that were formed by animals. Do not caulk under siding boards and in areas that weren't previously caulked by the builder. Chances are there is a reason some areas haven't been caulked. Underneath siding cracks should not be caulked because the siding needs a place to let moisture out of the inside surface. 

Spot prime bare areas of wood, metal or stucco with appropriate primers for each. Try to use primers labelled specifically for the surface you are priming. Apply paint after primer dries for the appropriate amount of time. 

Basic prep work for STAINS is basically the same for paints. The only thing you need to leave out is the priming. Staining wood or cedar siding functions by the stain soaking into the wood pores of the boards. Priming blocks the wood pores and doesn't allow the stain to function as it was made to do. 

Before starting to paint the exterior of a house, there are several preparatory steps that need to be taken. Here are some common prep work for exterior painting:

Cleaning the surface: The first step is to clean the surface thoroughly to remove dirt, grime, and any loose or flaking paint. This can be done using a pressure washer, scraper, and wire brush.

Repairing the surface: Any cracks, holes, or other imperfections in the surface should be repaired with wood filler or caulk, depending on the surface type. This will ensure a smooth and even surface for painting.

Sanding the surface: Once the surface is cleaned and repaired, it should be sanded lightly to create a rough texture for the paint to adhere to.

Priming the surface: If the surface has not been painted before, or if it has been stripped to the bare wood, it should be primed to ensure proper adhesion of the topcoat.

Protecting surrounding areas: Before painting, it's important to protect any surrounding areas that won't be painted, such as windows, doors, and landscaping, with plastic or drop cloths.

Choosing the right paint: Finally, choose a high-quality exterior paint that is appropriate for the surface type, weather conditions, and desired finish. Follow the manufacturer's instructions for application and drying time.

By following these prep work steps, you can ensure that your exterior painting project will be successful and long-lasting.

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