What’s the most common cause of peeling paint on the exterior of your home? You guessed it, its water.

Water vapor accumulates beneath the paint and/or primer. It begins to separate the coating from the surface, which eventually leads to cracking paint. The more it cracks, the more water seeps in, which causes bigger cracks. And soon you’ll start to notice peeling paint coming off your home in chunks, telling you something isn’t right.Why Does Exterior Paint Peel

When a house is painted here in Colorado, it undergoes a variety of weather changes, all throughout the year. It can be cool and damp in the morning, hot and dry in the afternoon. It can be subjected to sprinkler systems or the afternoon rain shower. Summer turns to winter and your home must deal with freezing weather, snow buildup, even ice in nooks and cracks.

If a house is painted without the proper priming and prep work, problems can start literally at the time of painting. A great painter knows that prep work is the most important part of the painting process. A top quality caulk applied skillfully will prevent water from seeping in for many years to come. If a problem is noticeable at the time of painting, a thorough clean up and prepping needs to be performed before paint is applied.

Special attention should also be placed on the most vulnerable areas of a home. The undersides of a roof’s overhang, or soffits, are vulnerable to leaks from flashing and gutters. The fascia boards, or trim boards mounted on exposed rafter ends, also are a weak point. Make sure they are properly installed and properly protected before paint is applied.

While water is one of the biggest reasons for peeling paint, it isn’t the only one.

Many homes are made to have the “Colorado” look and feel. Meaning they were built with a natural wood, stained to reflect a mountain home. Some types of woods – cedar for instance – is extremely porous and is likely to crack if painted. Staining is the only approach to this type of wood to fully protect it from the elements.

Its also important to know what type of paint you are using. Interior paint isn’t meant for cold conditions. If you use it on the outside, cracking may be the least of your troubles as we hit our subzero temperatures in the winter months. Also, mixing oil based paint with latex paints are a recipe for disaster. Oil based paints must be treated with a primer before latex paints are applied over it. Oil paint is more rigid than latex paints. Latex will actually stretch during normal weather conditions, and because of how oil based paints adhere to the wood, the two will fight each other, causing cracks in the surface.

Whatever the cause, the moment you notice peeling paint, its time to get it fixed and have a fresh coat of exterior paint applied in its place. Give us a call today for a quote.