Project Guide

Prepare to Paint Your Home's Exterior

1
COVER ANYTHING NEAR HOUSE WALLS
Cover anything house walls - Paint Your Home’s Exterior
  • Trim or tie back any bushes and limbs that will get in your way. 
  • Cover nearby plants with drop cloths or tarps. 
  • Turn off any air conditioning units and cover them with plastic and tape. 
2
REPAIR IMPERFECTIONS
Repair imperfections - Paint Your Home’s Exterior
  • Remove any shutters and close the storm windows. 
  • Inspect your siding and trim carefully, looking for holes and cracks, then make the necessary repairs. 
  • Fill holes and damaged areas with wood filler. Once dry, sand smooth. 
3
REGLAZE WINDOWS
Reglaze windows - Paint Your Home’s Exterior
  • Reglaze windows if the old putty is cracked or shrunken. 
  • You can remove the old putty with a chisel or stiff putty knife, careful not to knick or break the glass. 
  • Apply the new glazing compound as needed, pressing it in place with a putty knife.
4
SCRUB WALLS
Scrub walls - Paint Your Home’s Exterior

Safety: Wear gloves and other protective gear when using chemical cleaners. 


  • Use a brush or broom to scrub the siding and the trim with a solution of trisodium phosphate or a phosphate-free substitute. This removes dirt and grime that would keep new paint from adhering. 
  • You can also use a pressure washer to clean the walls, but be careful not to force water into any cracks between the siding. 
  • Remove existing paint only if it’s loose or flaking. If your home was built prior to 1978, be sure to follow proper safety and containment procedures for lead paint.
5
FINAL RINSE
Final rinse - Paint Your Home’s Exterior
  • Rinse the entire house with a garden hose until the runoff water is clear. 
  • If you used TSP to clean the house, rinse twice to ensure the solution is completely gone. 
  • Let the siding and trim dry completely, usually two days, before painting.