Exterior Restoration Painting
Residential - Minneapolis and St. Paul
for a Lifetime Exterior Paint Job
Siding and trim are stripped and restored to
"like new" condition for less than half the
cost of wood replacement.
My next opening for exterior work is in 2023.
Exterior and interior work are reserved for
current / former clients.
Part 1 Checklist
Part 2 About Me
Part 3 My Procedures
Click on any thumbnail image to see the larger image.
Part 1 - Checklist
After the wood has been stripped:
All architectural shapes preserved?
Wood smooth enough?
Board edges rounded?
Nails set and filled?
Wood conditioned with a polymer?
Problem boards replaced?
All cracks, seams and joints caulked?
Lifetime elastomeric caulk?
Four coat process?
Wood storms and screens restored on all edges?
Wood storms and screens trimmed for free fit?
Part 3 - About Me
I've specialized in whole house paint removal
and recoating in Minneapolis and St. Paul since
I began painting in 1976, with scores of projects
completed in this manner.
(No openings on my schedule until 2023.)
The procedures described below will ensure the
longest possible life for your house's exterior.
Part 4 - Procedures
1. Stripping paint
There are three basic methods used for
complete stripping of paint from wood:
1. Electric infrared heat (radiant)
2. Electric heat guns (convection)
3. Chemical stripping
I use electric infrared heat and electric heat
guns for all my paint stripping. These methods
do not scorch wood or present any fire hazard,
as long as all surfaces are caulked prior to
applying heat. Absolutely thorough pre-caulking
is my standard procedure when using convection
Both types of heat methods strip paint at no more
than 1/2 the cost of chemical stripping.
Pro Prep Scrapers
These scrapers greatly boost heat stripping output.
Keeping them razor sharp is the key. These
scrapers will ensure that all moulding elements on
your house are thoroughly stripped without any
alteration of their orginal shapes.
2. Get the wood smooth
It's important to be gentle with the scrapers as wood
is stripped of paint. I follow up with 80 grit hand
All board edges (including siding boards) must be
rounded by hand sanding prior to applying any
coating, as the paint film is too compromised at
sharp corners to be trusted.
3. Set the nails
All nails are set, if possible, then filled with a
quality filler. Now your nail heads are well isolated
from moisture which could cause rust and subsequent
failure of the paint film at that point.
Nails that resist setting are rust primed with a red
iron oxide primer, then carefully finger wiped with
a high stretch caulk.
If neither of the above procedures are followed, you
will have paint film failure at nail heads. This
failure will allow moisture into the wood and cause
further failure to adjacent areas.
4. Condition the wood, don't just prime it
I use a clear polymer for conditioning wood prior to
priming. I've tested clear polymer wood conditioners
extensively since 1990 and found them to create
success where oil primers had failed. They're very
elastic, yet good penetrators, reacting strongly with
wood fibers for maximum bond and moisture protection.
5. Problem boards
Boards with horizontal hairline cracks, as well as
larger cracks, need to replaced or have clear elastic
caulk troweled into their cracks.
Caulking is another procedure that separates the good
painters from the best painters. It requires patience
and adds to the time requirement for a project, thus
the tendency for otherwise good painters to skimp in
All joints and seams must be caulked using a 40 year
or lifetime silicone acrylic caulk. To topcoat these
high stretch caulks with long term success, one must
use a highly elastic paint such as Sherwin Williams
Duration Lifetime Coating. Polyurethane caulk is used
on architectural joints, such as where fascia or
crown moulding meets at outside corners.
7. Duration Lifetime Coating
Sherwin Williams' best exterior paints have always
had the best ingredients in the optimum percentages.
My own testing of Duration in 1997 demonstrated that
it is in an entirely different league than ordinary
premium house paint and can easily last a lifetime,
as it is guaranteed to do.
As sensitive to overbrushing as acrylic paints are,
Duration is more so and needs to be either sprayed on
or applied by brush by a top notch painter. It
must never be applied using the "spray and back
There is a strong tendency for people to overbrush
latex coatings and to spread the coating too far.
The idea is to apply a film of protection on the
surface, not to just color the surface. The goal
is to transfer the acrylic substance from the can
to the surface in a uniform film with as little
disturbance of the paint resin as possible.
8. Four coats everywhere
There should be four coats of film forming product
everywhere (except well shaded soffits). This might
take the form of a conditioning coat followed by two
coats of acrylic primer, then Duration; or a
conditioning coat followed by an acrylic primer,
then two coats of Duration.
Anything less does not adequately seal the surface.
When moisture penetrates into the wood often, the
surface wood fibers lose their integrity and the
film fails at the wood surface, ultimately as the
result of hydrostatic pressure acting on what has
become a poor bond.
9. Wood storms and screens issues
Wood storms and screens that fit too tightly will
cause rotting of the storm or screen as well as the
window sill or frame. I find that I have to trim at
least two edges of almost every storm or screen I
take off a house.
I also find that many storms and screens need
carpentering to replace bad corners.
All edges need to be sanded, conditioned and painted.
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updated April 2010, May 2019