Timber Decking

Residential house painting Sydney

Many Sydney homes have some outdoor decking, or a gazebo, a BBQ area, or perhaps decking around a swimming pool. This type of outdoor timber structure is exposed to the summer Sun and weather conditions, so it requires regular maintenance and occasional repair. This means repainting, or re-staining, every few years.

The positive of maintaining any outdoor timber decking is that the staining is reasonably straightforward for the average DIY person. A little research on the right stain products and the right painting techniques and there is hardly ever an issue.

Test the Timber

Does your decking need re-staining? Pour a few tablespoons of water on the decking. If the water beads up and floats on the top of the decking then the timber is still watertight, which means you don’t need to stain. But if the water soaks into the surface then the old stain or coating has worn away. This will require repainting as the timber is liable to soak up rainwater, causing damage over time.

Look for any damage to individual timber boards, these will need to be repaired or replaced.

Stains for Timber

There are basically oil based stains and water based stains.

Oil Based stains

Oil based stains tend to give off some strong fumes when applied, but this is not too bad for outdoor work.

Oil based stains are quite durable in harsh weather, and penetrate deeply into the wood while still showing the natural woodgrain.

Oil stains tend to try slowly, though this helps when applying an even coat.

Water based Stains

These are odour free and easy to clean up with plain water. They will not trap moisture in the timber.

These stains dry fairly quickly, and modern versions have improved, with a similar durability to oil stains.

Painting services Sydney

The occasional DIY project is a healthy pursuit. But painting a house is very time consuming. Have professionals look after the painting, and enjoy the look of a neatly painter home.

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Filling Gaps and Cracks

Residential house painting Sydney

There is often some minor repair work needed before repainting interior home walls. Walls will suffer the occasional dent or crack. These need to be filled in order to obtain he best possible paint finish.

Some holes on walls are from removed fixtures like mirrors, shelves, or mountings for television sets. Unless the fixtures are to be replaced these will also need to be filled before painting.

Even new houses may suffer the occasional crack or gap in the wall. The builders should make sure that there is no structural fault behind this type of damage. Then the gap or crack can be filled with plaster.

Gaps filling and painting services Sydney

  1. Clean the damaged area. Vacuum and use sugar soap.
  2. Make sure the area has no protruding elements; the surface should be flat. Use a knife to remove anything that stands up from the surface.
  3. Lightly sand the area; a rough surface help joints to bond.
  4. A small gap can be simply filled with plaster. Anything wider than about half an inch will require some mesh over the gaps to help hold the plaster while it sets.
  5. Mix up enough plaster to fill the hole.
  6. Apply plaster with a putty knife. Make sure the surface is reasonably flat.
  7. When the plaster is dry, sometimes it only takes an hour, sand the area completely flat. Use a flat block of wood behind the sand paper. (Some plasters take 24 hours to set. Read the instructions.)
  8. Vacuum the area to remove dust.
  9. When the plaster is completely dry you can paint the wall. Applying primer over the repaired gap can help the area blend in with the rest of the wall.
    Some plasters cannot be painted till 24 hours after application. Read the instructions.

Larger gaps around pipes or between surfaces can be filled with insulating foam sealant.

Professional painters Sydney

Professionals will undertake all the right surfaces preparation, including gap repair, before painting. This ensures the best results.

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Mould and Damage

Residential House Painting Sydney

Mould and mildew appear in some damp conditions. It is necessary to remove these infestations as part of the preparation for painting.

Mould is a fungus. It will grow in warm moist conditions that has some (organic) food source. When mould grows in a house it steadily damages the wall. It cannot simply be painted over.

Mould is a health risk. Breathing in the spores can cause lethargy, cognitive problems and respiratory problems.

Mildew is a milder form of mould, only appearing on the surface of buildings, and not posing any health risk. It does smell rather bad, and it must be removed for painting.

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Heavy mould will require professional treatment; it is difficult to remove and many have caused serious damage.


Small mould infestations can be removed with appropriate cleaning agents. These specialized mould and mildew cleaning liquids are available from hardware stores. They often need to be diluted in water before spraying on the mould inflected area.

Alternately, small mould infestations can be removed with diluted bleach; mix 1 part bleach with 2 or 1 part water.

Often the area affected by mould will need more than 1 treatment.

The solutions used to clean mould are quite strong, and will causing fading to fabrics. Take precautions and keep away from carpets, rugs and clothing.

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Removal of mould and proper preparations of all wall surfaces help produce the best painting results

 

House Painter Sydney

House Painter Sydney

Large interior walls are often painted with a roller. Roller painting has two main advantages over brushes. It covers a large amount of surface area in minimal time, and it gives a suitably neat and smooth finish. When roller painting is prepared and executed well there is fairly little wastage.

The only drawback of roller painting is that it cannot adequately cover corners and edges. But these are easily filled in with a brush.

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Roller painting requires both the roller and a ramp tray.

The roller itself consists of a roller cage, the metal wire frame on a handle, and a fabric sleeve that holds the paint. These both come in various sizes, but 30 cm width (1 foot) is standard for most walls. Obviously the sleeve and cage must be designed to fit together.

The thickness of the material around roller sleeve is termed the ‘nap’. The thickness of the nap will affect the glossiness of the paint.  A thin nap, 6-8mm, is suitably for glossy paint finishes. A thicker nap, 12mm, is suitable for matt or eggshell paint finishes. Very thick naps are sometimes used for painting rough surfaces like concrete.

Roller Technique Professional Painters Sydney

Before using the roller it is best to paint all the corners and edges of the wall with a small brush. A 2-3 cm wide brush is usually a good size.

  1. Wash the roller sleeve in water to remove any fuzz
  2. Attach the sleeve to the frame
  3. Partly fill the tray with paint
  4. Dip the sleeve into the paint till it is at half its depth
  5. Then move the roller back and forth over the ramp of the tray till the paint is evenly distributed over the roller sleeve. Do this each time the roller runs out of paint.
  6. Move the roller over the wall surface that you wish to paint. Only paint a small section of the wall at a time – perhaps a 60cm square.
  7. Paint the section of the wall in a zigzag pattern. Then fill in any gaps in the paint.
  8. Once the section of wall is covered go over the area with long parallel strokes.
  9. Repeat this process on the next small section of the wall, until the whole wall is painted.

If you have to take a break from painting then cover the roller in cling wrap to prevent the paint from drying.

When finished, wash the roller sleeve in water.

Oil based paint rarely uses a roller because cleaning is too difficult. Disposable sleeves are available for oil based painting projects.

Residential House Painting Sydney

Roller painting gives great results when using matt or eggshell paint on interior gyprock walls.

 

Paint Fumes

Residential House Painting Sydney

Paint is a combination of many different compounds. This includes solvents and pigments that give the paint its colour. The solvents in the paint, especially older paints, tend to give off strong fumes when drying. These fumes can be harmful.

Though paint is synthetic it is the organic chemicals that tend to cause problems when released as fumes. These organic chemicals can react with human physiology, aggravating allergies or causing breathing problems and fatigue. They have been connected to birth defects when exposed in high amounts.

The smell of fresh paint is largely due to the release of Volatile Organic Chemicals (VOC). This is similar to the smell of new carpet, dry cleaning and some furniture because the main chemical in all these situations is formaldehyde. A small amount of formaldehyde is inevitable in most homes, but it is best to keep levels to a minimum.

Modern Painting Services Sydney

Many modern paints are labelled ‘low VOC’ or ‘no VOC’. These paint formulations release little if any chemical vapour, making them far safer than paints of a generation ago. These same paints tend to be water based rather than oil based, though there are exceptions. 

While the main walls may have low VOC paint it is not uncommon for the trim (the skirting boards, window sills) to have a different type of paint. Quite possibly there is a small amount of VOC in the air after any paintjob.

It is best to let a room air out for a day or two after painting. This is also good practice with new carpet or floor sealing. 

  • Leave doors and windows open, and use fans to circulate air.
  • Indoor plants will soak up chemicals in the environment.
  • Use air purifiers with HEPA filters.

Young children and pregnant women should be kept away from recently painted rooms.

Professional Painters Sydney

Using environmentally healthy materials and products is a sound policy. We can achieve the best paint results for your home without compromising health or the environment.

Common Mistakes with Exterior Paint.

Exterior House Painter Sydney

It is too easy to fall into the mistakes made by all people on their first attempt. If we are painting a house these mistakes are rather costly and time consuming.

Choosing paint based on the ‘true colours’.

Did you look at the colours sample under interior lighting? The light has a huge effect on the colour we see.

Try looking at a colour sample outdoors under moderate daylight conditions. This is a more accurate impression of the external colour(s).

Take Advantage of Samples

Even if you estimate the colour in the right way the paint may look different on the wall. This applies to interior walls more than the exterior of the house, but it is always something to consider. 

Paint colours have a mass tone and an undertone. The mass tone is what we perceive as the general colour of the paint. But if we put that paint colour against a pure sample of the same colour we see that there is more to the paint that what we initially saw.

A sample pot of paint will give a fair indication of how the paint will look on the wall.

The Environment of the Home

You home is probably not in the middle of a plain neutral background.

The colours you choose for your house might work with each other, but they might also clash with the gardens, the general neighbourhood or even the neighbours’ homes. 

You home and garden should neatly complement each other, so choose colours accordingly.

Cleaning and Repair.

The paint won’t cover up many faults. Damage needs to be fixed, gaps need to be filled.

Any grease and grime needs to be removed from the home exterior, as this will always compromise the paint to some degree.

This makes all the difference to the final coat of paint.

Professional Painters Sydney

Call professionals to paint your home. Their consultation will make sure you make the right choices to get the results you want.

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Occasional Paint Problems

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New houses look good when completed with a fine paint job. Problems here are very rare. But older homes are a different matter. Conditions sometimes do not lend themselves to good painting results, or perhaps to the painted finish lasting very long. In these cases the walls and home may need some renovation work before a good paint job is possible.

Blistering

Blistering that develops over time is almost certainly caused by moisture underneath the paint. This strongly suggests a serious problem with leaking in the plumbing or from the roof. Have this inspected because long term water problems can cause serious damage.

Some external paint will blister after years in the Sun, but this is usually no cause for concern.

Chalking

This is where a fine powder, like chalk, appears on the paint surface. Mild cases of this are of no real concern; this occurs on newly painted walls. But if the chalking continues there is a problem. The pain may have been thinned too much, of the surface was poorly prepared.

Preparing a surface before painting, cleaning with sugar soap, will prevent 99% of chalking problems.

Mud Cracking

If irregular lines form in your paintwork, looking like cracked concrete or mud, then there has been a problem with the painting. This is probably due to a porous surface that has not been primed. Removal of the damage paint, followed by priming and repainting, is needed to repair the problem.

Mildew

This is basically a fungus that grow in damp, dark conditions. Poor ventilation make the problem worse.

Bleach will remove mildew.

Quality acrylic paints will offer a fair degree of protection against mildew.

Peeling

If the paint peels off then either the surface was dirty before painting or there was no primer under the paint.

These surfaces will have to be sanded back and repainted correctly with an appropriate primer under quality paint.

Wrinkling

If paint is too thick, and this includes painting a second coat before the first coat has dried, then paint will tend to wrinkle. It may also wrinkle if the surface is greasy.

This type of damage will require repainting, with undercoat and adequate drying time between coats.

Yellowing Paint

Some paints will slowly turn yellow if exposed to continual heat or if left in dark conditions. Good quality paint resists this yellowing.

Residential House Painting Sydney

We spend more time in our homes than anywhere else. It make sense to keep our home in the best condition possible. Well thought our décor that includes the right paint design goes a long way to giving us an attractive home interior.

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Painting Edges

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The quality of the edges can be the factor that separates the professional paint job from the amateur. Neat edges are not difficult to achieve with some skill and preparation.

Painting edges are the joint between the plasterboard wall and either the skirting board or the cornice on the roof. Else, there are edges around a door or window frame.

Painting edges tips:

  1. Use a smaller brush and put a small amount of paint in a shallow container. This way there will only be paint on the tip of the brush. A 50 mm to 63mm brush is a good size for this.
  2. You can use masking tape to cover the side of the edge that is not to be painted. Make sure the surface is clean and that the masking tape is pressed down firmly.
  3. A paintbrush with a slanted edge is designed to edge painting, though there are many professionals who stick with the straight brushes.
  4. Make sure there is good lighting when you paint. This helps prevent any missed spots, especially when working with lighter colours. Some individuals like to use a light on their head (like miners use) to see he area that they paint.
  5. When painting in tight corners it can help to wiggle the brush. This releases a little more paint onto the surface.
  6. When painting into a 90 degree edge (like where the wall meets the ceiling) it helps to push paint into the edge on a first pass, and then spread the paint on a second pass.
  7. If you do get paint on the wrong side of an edge you can remove it with a damp cloth. Try wrapping the cloth (one layer) around a flat putty knife or scraper and running it along the clean edge.

Painter Services Sydney

DIY projects can be satisfying, but it takes a considerable amount of time to paint your whole home.

Have your home professionally painted. Be sure of a good result, and spend your spate time on something enjoyable rather than home maintenance.

Occasional Paint Problems

Professional Painters Sydney

New houses look good when completed with a fine paint job. Problems here are very rare. But older homes are a different matter. Conditions sometimes do not lend themselves to good painting results, or perhaps to the painted finish lasting very long. In these cases the walls and home may need some renovation work before a good paint job is possible.

Blistering

Blistering that develops over time is almost certainly caused by moisture underneath the paint. This strongly suggests a serious problem with leaking in the plumbing or from the roof. Have this inspected because long term water problems can cause serious damage.

Some external paint will blister after years in the Sun, but this is usually no cause for concern.

Chalking

This is where a fine powder, like chalk, appears on the paint surface. Mild cases of this are of no real concern; this occurs on newly painted walls. But if the chalking continues there is a problem. The pain may have been thinned too much, of the surface was poorly prepared.

Preparing a surface before painting, cleaning with sugar soap, will prevent 99% of chalking problems.

Mud Cracking

If irregular lines form in your paintwork, looking like cracked concrete or mud, then there has been a problem with the painting. This is probably due to a porous surface that has not been primed. Removal of the damage paint, followed by priming and repainting, is needed to repair the problem.

Mildew

This is basically a fungus that grow in damp, dark conditions. Poor ventilation make the problem worse.

Bleach will remove mildew.

Quality acrylic paints will offer a fair degree of protection against mildew.

Peeling

If the paint peels off then either the surface was dirty before painting or there was no primer under the paint.

These surfaces will have to be sanded back and repainted correctly with an appropriate primer under quality paint.

Wrinkling

If paint is too thick, and this includes painting a second coat before the first coat has dried, then paint will tend to wrinkle. It may also wrinkle if the surface is greasy.

This type of damage will require repainting, with undercoat and adequate drying time between coats.

Yellowing Paint

Some paints will slowly turn yellow if exposed to continual heat or if left in dark conditions. Good quality paint resists this yellowing.

Residential House Painting Sydney

We spend more time in our homes than anywhere else. It make sense to keep our home in the best condition possible. Well thought our décor that includes the right paint design goes a long way to giving us an attractive home interior.

strata painting sydney

Polyurethane

House Painter Sydney

Polyurethane is a clear coating. It is commonly used on timber, some painted surfaces and occasionally other materials. IAs well as providing a protective layer it has an attractive mirror gloss finish.

Residential House Painting Sydney

Polyurethane would not usually be used on the walls of residential homes, but it can be used on trim, banisters, wooden skirting boards, wooden stairways, and some furniture. It is often used effectively on timber flooring.

There are two general types of Polyurethane:

Water Based Polyurethane

This is highly transparent, almost invisible- it basically retains the colour of the timber while adding the glossy mirror finish.

Water based polyurethane requires about 4 coats, but as the individual coats dry in two hours so a surface can be completed in a single day.

Solvent Based Polyurethane

This is slightly thicker than water based products, and it has a slight tint. This solvent based polyurethane will turn a mild amber brown with age. For some timber applications this slightly earth tint is desirable.

Floors and other timber surfaces generally require two coats of solvent based polyurethane. As this product require 24 hour to dry the two coats will need to be applied on separate days. The fumes from solvent based polyurethane are quite strong, so room should not be occupied for a few days after application.

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Consider polyurethane for highlighting and protecting natural timber.

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