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Commercial Exterior Painting Tips for Summer in Tampa

Paint isn’t “just paint.” There are multiple varieties, and many things factor into the decision about which paint to use. Some of those include the surface to be painted, whether it’s indoors or outdoors, and the conditions at the site to be painted. For example, you wouldn’t paint the inside of a refrigeration unit with the same paint you would use on outside surfaces. Likewise, you wouldn’t use paint designed for metal on concrete and vice versa.

A contractor needs to be well-versed in the compatibility of paints and substrates as well as the surfaces to be painted. The principles of adhesion and cohesion are critical in choosing the right paint for every job. They should also be knowledgeable about hazardous environments and paints that conform to the exacting specifications needed in those places.

Florida Weather

Shepard Contractors operates in Tampa, FL That means that most jobs we do outside have to be able to withstand the intense heat and humidity of the area. Many paints, even if they’re designed for such weather, simply can’t withstand the punishment year after year, which means that commercial painting jobs might have to be redone periodically.

The heat makes it tough to paint because it dries out the paint too quickly. Although that does allow multiple coats to be applied in one day, it also makes it so that the paint dries unevenly, which creates unsightly speckles and cracks in even the best exterior paint. Also, because it dries so quickly, there will be differences in shade between different sections of the surface if we don’t take appropriate measures.

It’s important to handle that by starting just after the dew evaporates early in the morning and by painting in the shade created as the sun moves across the sky. If it’s interior work, a contractor should paint from top to bottom as the heat increases and use multiple fans to keep the air circulating. By using these and other, more advanced, techniques, your contractor can guarantee your satisfaction with their workmanship in even the hottest of conditions.

Keeping up Appearances

Exterior painting in Tampa, FL requires the surface to be clean and free of destructive items like algae, mold, and dry rot. The same applies to interior painting. The changes in temperature from cool to sizzling as night turns to day during the summer in Florida wreak havoc on your walls’ surfaces. Any commercial painting contractor cannot guarantee superlative results on walls that are rife with problems.

Before you call a painting company, be sure to maintain your walls so that when they begin interior or exterior painting for you, it will stick and be the best paint job they can do. The best way to clean exterior walls is to prepare a solution of vinegar and hydrogen peroxide and put it into a commercial sprayer. Alternatively, you can use a solution of bleach and powdered laundry detergent. For algae, you might even need to use a commercial antifungal solution for the most stubborn spots.

For inside walls, you’ll have to do the same kind of cleaning, but you can’t use a commercial exterior sprayer inside. A squeegee will work for large areas, but you might have to use rubber gloves and sponges for corners and other hard-to-reach places. Once you do the right cleaning, you’ll be ready to go!

An Unforgiving Inspection Is Key to Painting Success

Shepard Contractors recommends that you visually examine all surfaces you intend to have painted prior to calling a contractor. You have to apply a rigorous attention to detail to find any imperfections that could have an effect on your new paint. Even the smallest section of dry rot, say half the size of a postage stamp, will have to be addressed and replaced. If not, it could morph into a giant section of wall that falls out, which will ruin not only your paint job but also your wall.

The last thing you need to have happen is for your contractor to paint everything and then have to come back later to repaint because of something you missed. So, be exceptionally vigilant when looking for cracks, peels, chips, fading, soft spots and other imperfections. You’ll already have removed mold, mildew, and algae prior to this inspection, but it pays to keep an eye out for those things as well. Only when all is ship shape can painting begin.

Check the Weather Report

Despite Florida contractor’s expertise in handling ultra-hot weather, it’s not usually a good idea to schedule exterior painting jobs on the hottest days. The best days for painting are when the mercury is hovering at about 70 F (21 C). The ideal humidity for such painting days is right around 50 percent. Of course, it’s not possible to “preorder” such weather, but you can do the best you can to schedule the right days.

Direct sunlight makes surfaces 15-20 degrees F hotter than their surrounding areas. If it’s too hot, we recommend not painting at all. Despite all precautions, the heat will cause blisters on the surface that will not only look horrible but will degrade both the cohesion of the paint surface itself and the adhesion to the substrate.

When it’s that hot, even interior commercial painting can be difficult in the extreme because surfaces that are close to the exterior walls are going to be much hotter than surfaces in the interior of the building. The paints used for each of those instances are not compatible with each other, which would cause not only adhesion problems but also shading problems between the sections of wall.

The Final Word

To get painting done right, you’re going to need a highly professional, dedicated, and experienced commercial painting contractor. In Tampa, FL that’s us: Shepard Contractors. With seven decades’ experience, we’ve got the know-how and tools to do it right the first time. In the unlikely event that we don’t, we’ll fix it, guaranteed. No commercial painting job is too big or too small for us, so give us a call at (813) 400-2081 to set up an appointment for an estimate.

Max Francisco