Painting During the Summer – How Hot is TOO Hot?
Like the old saying, “The only thing that’s certain is death and taxes and summer heat.”
Okay, maybe that’s not exactly the saying, but it definitely gets hot in the summer, and summer is a time when many people want to paint the exterior of their homes. Naturally, the question “How hot is too hot?” often comes up. Here are some guidelines.
What temperature is ideal for painting?
In terms of temperature, 70 degrees is the perfect outdoor painting climate. The hotter it gets, the more trouble paint will have in binding properly, which can result in cracking and peeling. The label on the cans of paint you purchase should give you more specifics on when to paint and when not to paint.
Humidity also affects how well paint adheres to surfaces and how long it stays looking good. Fifty-percent humidity is ideal. When you get up into the 70s and 80s, it’s going to take paint longer to dry and cure. Pay attention to weather forecasts to determine when a stretch of good days for painting is coming up. It’s best to put off the job for a little while rather than painting in adverse conditions.
Other factors that can affect an exterior paint job
Along with heat and humidity issues, there are other things you need to take into account.
Wind: In some parts of the country, certain periods during the summer are very windy. A little breeze is good – it can help paint dry faster. But too much wind can carry with it any manner of debris that will stick like glue to fresh paint.
Rain: Obviously you don’t want to paint in the rain. If there’s even a chance of rain coming up, postpone your painting. After a rain, make doubly sure surfaces to be painted are totally dry. Painting over damp surfaces is guaranteed to result in a poor paint job.
Sun: Try to avoid painting in direct sunlight, even if the temperature is moderate. Follow the sun and the shade. Direct sunlight can increase the temperature of surfaces up to 15 degrees above the air temperature.
Key painting tips
Regardless when you paint, here are some tips that all professional painters know and use.
- Purchase the best quality of paint that’s available.
- Thoroughly prepare surfaces – that means cleaning, sanding, scraping and whatever else is necessary.
- Don’t buy cheap brushes and rollers. Ask your paint dealer about the different choices available and buy high quality.
- Take extra time to mask and/or cover windows, trim areas and anything else that you don’t want to get paint on including bushes, trees, flowers and walkways.
- When applying more than a single coat, follow the paint manufacturer’s guidelines for drying time – and take into account the air and surface temperatures, which might warrant a longer wait before applying a second coat.
By following these guidelines and using your own common sense, you’ll be able to pinpoint the best times to paint your home’s exterior during the summer and end up with a good-looking finished product that will hold up for years.
Franklin Painting of Connecticut provides experienced paint crews for all types of home painting projects. If you want to look into having your next project done by professionals who bring guaranteed results, give us a call at (877) 646-7774.