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When Is It Too Cold to Paint Outside?

What does the temperature need to be outside to get the best paint job on the exterior of my home?

Even though we live in the south and are blessed with one of the best climates in the country, it is still winter. As the weather becomes more and more uncertain from day to day, a question I get asked frequently, is . . . "How cold is too cold to paint my exterior?"  

It is always recommended to do your own research depending on how extensive the job is, what type of paint your contractor is using, and the color change, if there is one.  

Be careful not to let the painting contractor rush you into painting your exterior based on his/her timeline. Hopefully, you have a good one that is highly recommended and that you know and trust. Normally the home is pressure washed prior to painting, and you want the exterior to be thoroughly dry before caulk and paint are applied. Depending upon the amount of shade that surrounds your home, it may need an extra day to dry.  

Different paint manufactures state minimum temperature application on their labels, and some state that you can paint as cold as 35 degrees. We prefer no less than 40-45 degrees, and that is stipulated on that temperature staying at that level for four hours or more consistently. The paint has to have a surface temp to enable it to cure properly. That being said, if there is rain in the forecast, make sure to cease the painting if there is not ample time to allow each coat to dry at least 4-6 hours. If you are going with a much deeper color change, expect two coats of paint, and a longer drying time to allow for the added tint in the paint.

When considering the expense to have the exterior painted, it is better to be safe than sorry. If you know the temp is going to be hovering in the below-40-degree mark for several days, and not much sun peaking through, think twice about having that project started. As our winter progresses, (remember the January snow storm?) it may be better to wait until the spring. But as Atlantans let us not forget the pollen we experience. In that case you will need to plan in that window at least five days before or after that blanket of green stuff.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

John Landa December 11, 2011 at 08:54 PM
Not Winter yet ! Dec. 21st; still the First Day of winter...
Darla Dixon January 06, 2012 at 01:44 AM
Rebecca, make sure you blog also on MerchantCircle.com, it's a good site for businesses. You could probably run some of the same content, just edit it so it's different :)
Rebecca Dumas January 07, 2012 at 02:45 PM
Thanks Darla, I will look into it.

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