Home Improvement Expert Danny Lipford

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When Is the Best Time to Paint Outside


Watch this video for tips on painting the outside of your home during hot or cold temperatures, and the advantages of using eco-friendly, low VOC paint. ...More




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When Is the Best Time to Paint Outside

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Painting the outside of your house is best done in the fall or spring when temperatures are moderate, and the weather isn’t too hot or too cold.

The best temperature range for painting outdoors with latex paint is from 50° to 85° F. Painting during hot weather can cause latex paint to dry too fast, resulting in brush marks and clumps of paint on the paintbrush. Painting when it’s too cold can cause the paint to not adhere well to the surface, resulting in cracking and peeling.

Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are chemicals released into the air by some paints when they dry. Breathing VOCs isn’t good for your health or the environment, so be sure to buy low VOC or no VOC paint when painting inside or outside your home.

Watch this video to find out more.

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Danny Lipford: Besides raking leaves, one of the other things that’ll be getting done around the neighborhood during the fall is painting. That’s because the best time to apply latex paint is when the outside temperature is moderate.

You know if it’s too hot, it dries too quickly, and it leaves some ugly brush marks on the surface that you’re painting. And clumps of paint will get in the brush, making it real hard to do a quality job. Now if it’s too cold, it just won’t bond as well to the surface where you’re applying it. So now is the time to get it done.

But while you’re doing a little painting, think about painting green. Not the color, but “green” as in with the environment in mind. Now you’ll see that most water based, latex paints contain VOCs or volatile organic compounds.

As the paint dries, it gives up these chemicals, which are released into the air for about six months after you’ve applied the paint. Inside your home that means a strong odor and poor air quality for you. But outside it means ozone pollution and the release of smog forming chemicals into the atmosphere.

None of that stuff is good stuff, so many paint manufacturers have begun reducing the level of VOCs in their products to address this concern. Now it’s possible to find paints, like this one, which is actually formulated to give off about nine times fewer VOCs by weight.

So check the label before you start, and get that painting done before the cold sets in.