How Do You Compare Painting Contractors?
What separates one exterior paint job from another and how do you compare painting contractors?
It's all in the preparation!
Proper paint preparation is the factor that most affects the lifespan and price of a paint job. Proper paint prep treating any mildew on the home and power washing at least three days before paintings. All bare wood needs to be primed with the right primer. All failed caulking needs to be scraped out (don't caulk over existing cracked caulking) and then re-caulked.
Next, the proper amount of paint needs to be applied. You can apply a single coat of paint color only, or you can apply both paint and a topical protection. Applying the proper amount of paint gives your home the best protection from the harsh northwest elements.
Most painting contractors hourly rates are fairly similar to each other. So, when your estimates vary greatly, this is usually the difference in the amount of prep the contractors are planning to do in addition to the quality of paint being used.
Does The Color Match?
If not what do I do with all those Paint Cans.
The first step is to determine if the any of the paint cans color match your current house colors. I refer to original matching cans of paint as gold. Especially if the cans with paint are labeled as a color match for the walls, ceilings or rooms.
We often get calls from realtors to repair walls and do some touchup painting before a house goes on the market. It's always frustrating trying to get a paint sample to match without cutting a piece off of the wall. Also, paint manufacturers adjust their formulas every few years to keep up with the newest environmental and performance standards. All in all what this means is that the paint that matched perfectly when it was low VOC might be slightly different in sheen or color in the new zero VOC formula.
Well, what should you do if you have identified the cans of paint and determined the paint is not a color match? How do you dispose of all of those extra cans of paint?
First, determine if the paint is oil based or latex. Then separate the paint cans accordingly.
Second, for latex paints and primers, open half empty cans and fill them with kitty litter, sawdust or paper shreds and then leave them open to dry. Dried paint can be disposed of safely into the trash. Personally I like to dump all paint cans over half full into an old 5 gallon bucket (making sure to only fill the bucket only about a third of the way) before adding kitty litter, sawdust or paper shreds.
Third, for oil based paints and primers. Dispose at your local hazohouse. I recommend taking this opportunity to recycle your leftover paint thinners, lacquer thinners or mineral spirits at the same time.