Q: I recently had my house painted because the paint was peeling, and now it’s peeling again. Why did it fail so soon?

A:One of the common misconceptions is that a new coat of paint will prevent peeling problems. In some cases, the opposite can be true – it can make the problem worse. The cause of the peeling must be analyzed and remedied before more paint is applied. The causes can be numerous, such as: moisture infiltration, deteriorating substrate, wrong primer, and old brittle paint. A professional painter should be able to determine the cause and recommend solutions. We work closely with the technical representatives at Sherwin-Williams to find solutions to every painting situation.


Q: My house is only ten years old and I’ve found that the wood on my door frames is starting to rot. What’s the problem?

A:We often see premature failure of exterior woodwork on new homes, while it is rare on older homes. The biggest difference is how wood is grown. Today it is grown as fast as possible, so that it can be harvested, and more can be planted. Years ago, it was grown more naturally, and thus slower, which produced tighter and narrower growth rings. The rapid growth rings from the summers are softer and more prone to rot than the harder slow growing rings from the winter. We’ve found that the pine that is commonly used for woodwork today doesn’t last very long outside in the Northeast.


Q: Can rotten wood be repaired or should it be replaced?

A:The extent of deterioration and type of woodwork will determine whether it should be replaced or repaired. If the damage is extensive and the profile of woodwork is available, it might make sense to replace it. PVC is now available in many profiles and can be sawn, sanded and painted just like wood. If the damage is minimal, or the woodwork is unique, it can be repaired using epoxy consolidants and fillers, which are sanded, primed and painted to look indistinguishable from the original.


Q: Does wallpaper have to be removed, or can I paint over it?

A:The answer is, that depends. The factors that should be considered are: is it loose, what type of wall is underneath, was it sized properly, and how long do you intend to live there. We usually recommend complete removal, because it prevents problems in the future. It is a labor-intensive task, and sometimes it is not practical. If the walls weren’t sized, it will be difficult to remove and will likely cause damage to the wall, which must be repaired before painting. Often the only way to decide how problematic it will be is to try a test sample. In some cases, it is better to spackle and sand the seams, and paint over it. Especially with older homes that have plaster cracking problems, painted over wallpaper can actually look better because it prevents cracks from showing.


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