Painting 101

Paint plays an integral part in beautifying your home. The right colour and correct technique bring out the character and personality of your home, while the inverse turns it into an abstract art exhibit that few would appreciate. Here is a list of complications that may happen with your paint job and the possible solutions:

1. Paint doesn’t dry

There are three possible reasons why your paint doesn’t dry on time. Prolonged tackiness is an indication of either a humid atmosphere, which hampers the paint from drying or that you are applying too much paint to the wall. It could also indicate that the paint is of inferior quality.

All paint will dry out eventually, so the simple solution is to wait it out. In the meantime, you could place a warning sign instructing others to steer clear from the wet surface.

2. Wrinkles

Not unlike the first problem, wrinkling occurs when you apply too much paint to the wall, resulting in skin-like droops and sags. This happens because the paint is applied too thickly. As a result, the surface paint dries faster than its underside. When you apply the next coating, the solvents in the paint shrink and this causes the wrinkling. Cold weather also results in uneven drying between the top and bottom layers. Start by sanding the wrinkled area smooth, then apply a new coat of paint with the proper consistency. Even better, remove the wrinkled paint completely before starting the repainting process.

3. Alligatoring

In this scenario, the paint layer cracks, curling up upon itself to form isolated sections on the surface. Incidentally, the peels form a pattern identical to the hide of an alligator, hence the namesake Alligatoring. This may happen due to the incompatibility between the paint at the top and bottom layer.

Or possibly, the top layer had been applied before the paint at the bottom had dried. A simple preventive measure would be to ensure the first layer of paint is dry before applying the next layer. If you are unable to determine if your paints are compatible with each other, try painting at an isolated spot on your house before committing to the entire place.

4. Mildew

Damp and shady areas often develop mildew, a mouldy growth that shows up in unsightly dots or splotches of white and black. Painting over it doesn’t help as the growth will creep right through your new coat of paint. To solve the problem, kill off the patch of mildew with a fungicide before painting over it.

5. Chalking

Some paints are designed to get powdery or “chalky” when it rains, which serves the purpose of automatically cleaning the wall surface. However, excessive chalking is undesirable as it may stain the foundations or sidewalks of your building.

Chalking may happen when you paint on a surface that is too porous, and the wall, in turn, absorbs too much of the paint’s binding agents. Also, it could occur due to the usage of inferior paint. To overcome this problem, wash the surface thoroughly, then paint over it with a non-chalking paint.

Want to make a comparison between wallpaper and painting? Check out the article on wallpaper or paint.

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