Complete Exterior Wall Paint Process

How To Paint Exterior Walls ?

Complete Exterior Wall Paint DIY Guide

How to paint exterior walls is one the most common topic for the DIY project. Understanding the correct technical process to paint the exterior walls is crucial  for the success of your DIY project.

The exterior paint is an important decision that protects your house from adverse weather condition and associated maintenance expenses.

The right selection of the exterior paint can transform the looks of your house. However, the final outcome of the exterior paint project depends upon several factors.

It is important to correctly execute the exterior paint work to ensure that you get the best returns from your investment in buying the expensive paint.

But sometimes, the exterior paint DIY project do not come up to our expectations. This happens mainly due to the wrong execution.

Exterior Wall Paint Work Process Step By Step
How To Paint Exterior Walls, Exterior Wall Paint Work Process

This is a comprehensive resource that will guide you step by step to ensure your success. You will learn how to paint exterior walls in seven simple steps.

After following this process, you can be rest assured of professional quality results of your exterior paint project.

Let us take a quick look at the list of the paint material and the tools you will need to execute this project.

List Of Wall Paint Materials

You will need following materials for the exterior wall paint DIY project.

Wall Painting Tools

You will need following tools required for the exterior wall paint DIY project.

STEP - 1

Wall Surface Preparation

Wall Surface Preparation For Exterior Wall Paint

The first step of the exterior wall painting work is to   prepare the wall surface for the painting work.

This is a very crucial step and the wall surface must be prepared as per the recommended procedure to avoid the future problems such as flaking and peeling of the wall paint.

The exterior wall paint can either be applied on the existing paint or on a new cement plastered wall. 

Surface Preparation For Walls With Existing Paint

Surface Preparation For Existing Wall Paint

Surface Preparation For New Cement Plaster.

Surface Preparation For New Cement Plaster Wall

The wall surface preparation is crucial step that is necessary to ensure perfect bond between the wall and the paint.

Utmost care should be taken to avoid any procedural lapses and short cuts in the preparation of the wall surface. The untreated surface can cause early peeling of the paint and reduced life of the wall paint. 

The  painting work for the interior walls can either be done on the existing painted walls or on the newly constructed plastered wall surface.

Let us discuss both the situations.

How To Paint Exterior Walls

Surface Preparation For Walls With Existing Paint

Removal Of The Existing Paint.

The removal of the existing paint especially on the exterior walls is a difficult and tedious  task. If the existing paint is in good condition then the existing paint removal may not be required.

However, in most situations the partial paint removal is required instead of complete paint removal.

The removal of the existing paint takes some additional time but it pays in the long run. Especially If you have selected a luxury emulsion paint then complete removal of the existing paint will give best results.

The easiest way to remove the existing exterior paint is by using high pressure water jets. The pressure washer can be effectively used to partially remove the existing paint.

Another method used for the removal of  existing paint is by  using special wire brush. On the plane surface , the paint can easily be removed by using any scrapping blade.

Exterior Paint Removal by Pressure Washer
Exterior Paint Removal With Pressure Washer

The pressure water paint removal is also very effective on the textured wall surfaces where scrapping tools cannot be used.

After the removal of the existing paint, the wall surface scrapped by wire brush.  All the loose particles are removed.

 At this stage, all the wall cracks, every hole, ridges must be sealed with either cement paste or special crack sealant compound before the application of the primer coat.

The wall surface area is now ready for the application of the coat of the primer paint.

Important Tips

For the removal of the stubborn existing paints, special paint stripper paint thinners are available in market.

These special purpose paint strippers are first applied on the existing paint and the existing paint can be easily removed using the pressure washer or a drilling machine with wire brush attachment.

Surface Preparation For Exterior Cement Plaster Wall

The exterior wall paint work for the newly plastered wall surface can be done only after the initial curing period of the plaster is over. This period is usually at least fifteen days in sunny dry weather.

For best results, the new plastered wall surface should be completely dry and there should not be any dampness present in the wall.

How To Paint New Cement Plaster Wall

The plaster surface is first cleared and any lumps present are removed using pressure washer. The plaster surface is then rubbed by using a wire brush or sandpaper to clear the dust.

The wall surface after the sanding job should cleaned to clear all the loose particles. At this stage all the cracks , every hole , ridges must be sealed with either cement paste or special crack sealant compound.

The exterior wall surface area is now ready for the application of the cement primer paint coat.

STEP - 2

Sealing The Wall Cracks

How To Repair Exterior Wall Cracks ?

The cracks on the exterior wall can cause seepage problems and maintenance issues. All wall cracks must be properly sealed prior to the application of the wall paint.

Most walls develop random small cracks over a period of time due to ageing of the building and some other factors. The structural cracks needs special treatment.

It is a recommended practice to open the cracks with some sharp pointed scrapper tool. The cracks are sealed with special wall crack sealant material readily available in the store.

There are many reputed wall crack sealant products readily available ( Amazon , Walmart ) in any home improvement store or hardware shop.

How To Seal Exterior Wall Cracks
How To Seal External Wall Cracks

The exterior wall surface cracks can also be sealed by using the cement paste.  However, the use of special crack sealant material will gives much better results.

After sealing the wall cracks, the next step is to level these cracks by sanding the wall surface with the fine sandpaper.

At this stage, all the holes on the wall surface must be sealed, ridges must be removed and leveled by using the special crack sealant compound to get the uniform smooth wall surface.

The exterior wall surface is now ready for the application of the primer coat.

Important Tips

It is important to seal all the cracks, patch up the holes, clear ridges and properly seal with crack sealant product readily available in the market.

Any undulation left on the exterior wall surface will be prominently visible on the application of the wall paint. And therefore, it is absolutely necessary to properly prepare the wall surface as per the recommended process.

STEP - 3

Masking Operation

Mask The Exterior Doors And Windows

It is important to mask and completely cover all exterior doors, windows, lamps, air-conditioner or any other gadget that you don’t want to be spoiled by the unwarranted painting spots.

You can use any material such as used news papers, polyethylene paper or any such material that can be easily discarded after the completion of the painting work.

Masking The Furniture
Masking Tape , Interior wall Paint

Important Tip

It is very difficult and painful process to remove the paint stains if the masking is not done properly. The paint stains can also damage exterior furniture , landscape features and outdoor floor.

And therefore, all surfaces that needs to be protected by masking with suitable masking material. The masking material is also readily available in any home improvement store.

You can use the masking paper tape to stick the masking paper on the wall surface. The masking tape does not peel off the paint when you unmask the objects after the painting job is completed.

Special attention needs to be given to protect the plants during the exterior paint work. The paint stains on the plants cannot be easily removed.

Masking The Windows , How To Paint Interior Wall

STEP - 4 , 5

Application Of The Primer Coat

How To Apply Primer Coat On Exterior Walls ?

The primer paint is first applied on the wall surface before the application of exterior wall paint. The primer coat is necessary to ensure the perfect bond between the paint and the wall surface.

The primer is a special type of paint that binds the paint  layers with the wall surface. The cement primer is necessary to ensure the perfect bond between the wall surface and the layer of the putty used to make the wall surface smooth.

For self priming ( two-in-one exterior paints ) the primer coat is not required. In such cases , the paint can be directly applied on the wall surface.

The wall primer can be applied either by brush or by a roller brush or by a spray gun. However, the application by spray gun will give better result.

The primer coat should allowed to become completely dry for a period of  at least 6 to 8 hours after the application.

How To Wall Primer , How To Paint Interior Wall
What Is Wall Primer , How To Wall Primer , How To Paint Interior Wall

Important Tip

The primer coat can be applied either with normal paint brush ( 4 Inch ) or paint spray gun or a roller brush. 

Two types of primer paints are available in the market. The first type is water soluble and the second type is oil thinner ( any oil paint thinner ) soluble.

However, the oil based thinner soluble primer is considered superior and give the best results. The water based primer also works absolutely fine.

STEP - 6

Apply The Two Coats Of Exterior Wall Paint

How To Apply Exterior Wall Paint ?

The selection of the exterior paint depends upon several factors. The exterior paint market is very competitive and you will find plenty of options with fancy features.

The user has to first decide the  type of the exterior paint to be used. Different types of exterior wall paints are available in the hardware store.

Further, you also need to prepare the desired color shade of the wall paint. And finally, the method to be used to apply the wall paint.

Select The Type Of The Exterior Paint

At this stage the wall surface preparation is complete and ready for the application of the exterior wall paint.

However, before the application of the wall paint, you need to first decide the   type of the paint you wish to select. Different types of exterior wall paints are available in the market with various features.

Further, you have option either to use the readymade shade or you can prepare the desired colour shade. And finally, you also need to decide the method to be used to apply the wall paint.

Types Of Exterior Wall Paints

How To Select The Exterior Wall Paint ?

The selection of the type of the exterior paint to be used mainly depends upon the budget and other factors. Different types of exterior paints are available in the market.

The paint type can be broadly grouped into two categories. The first type of interior is a water soluble paints and the second type is thinner soluble paints.

The water based paints can be diluted by adding the  water to get the required consistency.

However, for oil based paints can be diluted by adding a specific oil paint thinner such as turpentine thinner. It is  readily available in all home improvement stores.

Some of the most popular and commonly used exterior paint  types include cement paints , emulsion paints , acrylic emulsion paints and texture paints.

Best Exterior Emulsion Paints

How To Select The Color Shade ?

How To Select Color Scheme For Exterior Walls ?

The exterior paints are available in wide range of colors  that depends upon the brand you would select.

The user has option either to a readymade shade or you can also create color shade as  per your choice. Depending upon the personal preferences and theme the color scheme can be decided.

  The easiest way to narrow down on the color scheme options  is by actual application of the paint in small swatches ( patches ). This gives fairly good idea about the looks of the paint.

For darker shades, the mass effect of the paint is completely different as compared to its limited use as highlighter or on a smaller area.

The exterior color shade selection depends upon several factors. Such as theme , building architecture style, natural light, mood , environmental conditions and the maintenance issues.

 The selection of the exterior paint scheme is a matter of personal choice. However, there are some important factors that should be considered while selecting the correct color scheme for your house.

How To Select Exterior Color Scheme
How To Paint Exterior Walls, Factors To Select Exterior Color Scheme

Important Tips 

Most exterior paint brands offer large size color shade swatches. These swatches can be effectively used to narrow down on the final selection of the exterior color scheme.

It is important to make the color shade in the required quantity sufficient enough for the two coats.  Any change in the shade might look odd and such variation might be prominently visible.

Exterior Paint Finishes

The paint finish and the paint texture are two different properties of the paints. The finish of the paint indicates the light reflection ability of the paint. 

The exterior paints are available in the market that can render different types of surface finishes. The exterior paint finish is an important feature of the paint that affects the visual effect.

The paint finish type is prominently mentioned on the paint product description. The most common exterior paint finishes include high gloss finish, semi-gloss finish, satin finish , matte or flat finish and the eggshell finish.

The gloss and semi-gloss finish paints are relatively easier to maintain. The gloss finish paint is also considered to be more durable.

On the other hand , the matte finish paint create a non glossy effect on the wall surface. However , the matte finish paints  relatively require more care and maintenance.

Paint Finish

 Finish Look

Durability

Scratch Resistance

Hides Imperfections

Maintenance

Gloss

High

Low

Low

Low

Semi-Gloss

Good

Moderate

Low

Low

Satin

Moderate

Good

Moderate

Moderate

Eggshell

Moderate

Good

Moderate

Moderate

Matte 

Low

High

High

High

Exterior Paint Texture

The exterior paint texture is another important feature that should be considered at time of selecting the exterior paint.

You can add texture to the painted surface by two methods.

Adding Texture With Roller Brushes

The first method used for adding the texture is by using different types of roller brushes.

The special texture roller brushes are readily available in any home improvement store. You can get plenty of choice for the roller brushes.

Most exterior paint brands also offer special category of exterior texture paints that renders different types of textures on the wall surface.

How To Select Interior Paint Texture

Adding Texture With Special Texture Paints

The second method used for adding the texture is by using special texture paints readily available in the market.

The special texture paints are available in the market. These texture paints are available in both powder and in the paste form usually in the 25 Kg or 30 kg bag. 

The texture paints are water based paints and one to two liters of water can be added to the texture paint paste to get the required consistency.

This type of texture paints are applied on the exterior wall surface with a large size trowel. A single coat is sufficient to render beautiful texture on the exterior wall surface.

The texture paint is the best solution for the exterior wall with multiple hairline cracks. The texture paint can effectively hide the all types of plaster defects. 

Exterior Wall Texture Paints

How To Apply Exterior Wall Paint ?

Exterior Wall Paint Application Techniques

Different techniques and methods are used to apply the exterior paint. The selection of the method depends upon the situation and area to be painted.

The exterior wall paint can be applied either by using a brush  or by a roller brush. It can also be applied by a spray gun. Each method has its pros and cons.

However, the roller brush with drip tray is the most common and preferred method for the application of exterior paints.

The spray gun option offers many advantages. It is also the preferred method due ease of use and the speed. The spray can easily cover large area with the uniform texture.

Wall Paint By Brush

Interior Paint By Brush

Wall Paint By Roller

Interior Paint By Roller Brush

Wall Paint By Spray Gun

Interior Paint By Spray Gun

Important Tips

The use of general paint brush for exterior wall paint application is the most common and the preferred method. This method does not need any special skill.

The selection of the right wall paint brush can make a big difference in the outcome of your DIY project.

Different types of wall paint brushes are available in the market. 

Read More

Types Of Wall Paint Brushes

Exterior Wall Paint Process

How To Apply Two Coats Of Exterior Wall Paint ?

So far we have covered in detail, how to paint the exterior walls till the surface preparation stage. We have also discussed various exterior wall paint finishes , textures and the methods used to apply the paint on the exterior wall surface.

The exterior wall surface at this stage is considered as ready for the application of two to three coats of exterior paint. The number of paint coats depends upon the type of the paint, color shade and the method used to apply the exterior paint.

The exterior paint coats can be applied either by using a 4 Inch paint brush , or a roller brush or by using a spray gun. Depending upon the skill of the painter , each of these method can give different texture to the exterior wall surface.

Exterior House Paint Work

The exterior paint work is executed from top to bottom.  The wall painting work can be started after the surface preparation work is complete.

The first coat of the exterior wall paint can be applied either horizontal or vertical direction. If the first coat on the exterior wall is applied horizontally then the second coat should be applied in the vertical direction to get the uniform finish.

The second coat of the exterior paint can be applied only after the first coat is completely dry. The second coat of the paint can be applied after a gap of at least eight hours in dry weather condition.

Important Tips

 If you are using a brush to paint the wall surface then the roller can be applied on the wet paint surface to give different types of textures to the wall surface.

Different types of wall paint rollers brushes are available in the market for imparting different texture to the wall surface.

The roller brush extension rods can be used to extend the reach of the roller brush. Similarly, special ladder attachments are available that holds the painting tools and the paint cans while using the ladder.

If the first coat is applied in the vertical direction then the second coat should be applied in the horizontal direction to ensure uniform finish of the painted wall surface.

STEP - 7

Deep Cleaning After The Wall Paint Work

The prevention is always better than cure. The masking operation can substantially reduce your post painting cleaning efforts required after the paint work is complete.

The last step after the painting work is the deep cleaning operation. This step involves unmasking all the objects and the removal of the all masking cover.

You can remove some minor paint stains left over with the help of either acetone or turpentine or any mild thinner to remove the minor stains.

Deep Cleaning House After Painting Work
Deep Cleaning After Painting Work

Important Tips

The use of strong stain remover can cause permanent damage to your furniture, floor and other such surfaces at the time of cleaning operation.

The post painting work cleaning operation done by the painting contractor should be closely supervised to avoid any damage.

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