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Effective Ways of Painting Aluminum Siding


Aluminum siding is most commonly found on older homes, but it is still used on new construction projects as well. It is a relatively affordable, durable material that has easy maintenance requirements. It also has excellent insulating properties, so it can have a great impact on your home energy bills. As is the case with many other painted surfaces on your home, the paint on aluminum siding can begin to peel and fade. Painting aluminum siding is a significant undertaking, but it can dramatically improve your home’s curb appeal and help you to maintain its excellent condition going forward. A great starting point for your home improvement project is to learn more about what it takes to paint this material.

Essential Supplies and Materials for Your Painting Project


Before you begin any home improvement project, you need to assemble all of the supplies and equipment that you need to get the job done right. Painting aluminum siding can be broken down into a few steps. These include repairing damaged siding, cleaning the siding, priming the surface and painting aluminum siding. Each step requires specific materials.

If you need to repair damaged siding, you will need a utility knife, tin snips, replacement aluminum siding patches, a ladder and clear silicone caulk. To prepare the surface for the application of primer and paint, you will need a scraper, bleach, a bucket, a scrub brush and a power washer or garden hose. For the priming and painting steps, you should have painter’s tape, protective plastic sheeting, galvanized metal etching primer, a synthetic polyester paintbrush, a roller and 100 percent acrylic paint designed for exterior use.

Avoid using latex-based primer or paint. In addition, choose a low-luster top coat. This will minimize the impact of dents and other types of damage to the aluminum siding going forward.

What to Do Before Painting Aluminum Siding


While aluminum siding is a durable, low-maintenance material, it is prone to denting. These will need to be addressed to ensure that you enjoy a flawless end result from your hard work. The best way to deal with dents and other types of damage to aluminum siding is to remove the damaged areas. Use tin snips and a utility knife to cut a clean square around each damaged area. Then, cut a square replacement patch that is several inches larger than the patch that you removed. If necessary, remove the nailing strip from this replacement material. After applying the silicone caulk to the back side of the patch, place it over the hole that you cut. The top piece of this patch should be concealed underneath the row of siding directly above it. With your fingertip, smooth over the excess silicone that squeezes out from under the patch to create a flawless, sealed surface.

Prepare the Aluminum Siding for the Application of Fresh Paint

After patching and repairing the damaged siding throughout the entire exterior, you are ready to prepare the siding for the primer and paint applications. To begin, scrape all loose, chipped or peeling paint from the siding. All visible caulk lines should be removed as well. Apply a fresh coat of caulk to ensure that the siding remains well-sealed. You should then scrub mildew off of the siding using a bleach and water solution and a scrub brush. The entire surface should be cleaned with a garden hose or a power washer before painting aluminum siding. Intense water pressure can damage the siding, so choose a lower setting. The primer and paint should only be applied to completely dry aluminum. Allow the siding to dry for approximately four days before proceeding. Wet weather conditions will extend this time frame, and this includes rain as well as high humidity.

Easy Steps for Painting Aluminum Siding


Now that the aluminum siding is clean, dry and in great condition, you can being the final step of applying primer and paint. Painting aluminum siding is a messy project, so you should use painter’s tape and protective plastic sheeting to cover all surfaces around the siding that you do not want to get primer and paint on. Using a synthetic paint brush, apply a layer of galvanized metal etching primer across all surfaces of the siding. This should dry completely before proceeding with the next step. In most cases, the primer may take at least four hours to dry and cure.

When painting aluminum siding, the paint should be applied evenly using a roller and a paint tray. The roller should run in a left to right motion if your home has horizontal siding. Otherwise, you should run the roller up and down. You can fill in spaces that the roller missed and smooth the paint using a paint brush. After the first coat of paint has dried for at least two hours, apply a second coat. Remember to remove the painter’s tape and plastic sheeting as soon as possible for the best results.

The prep work to repair damaged siding could take many hours in some cases. Additionally, the amount of drying time required between the cleaning step and the application of each layer of primer and paint can extend the length of the project. With this in mind, you should allow several days of solid effort to complete the project. This may vary based on the size of your home and how many hours of work you put into the project each day. Painting aluminum siding should only be completed when dry weather conditions are expected.

While painting aluminum siding is a significant undertaking, you can produce beautiful results with a good balance of time, energy and the right steps. If you are ready to see an improvement in your home’s exterior, now is the perfect time to begin assembling the supplies and allocating time in your schedule to get the work done.