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Frequently Asked Questions

If you are thinking about painting or are ready to begin, Charlotte’s premier painting contractors have some helpful tips and tricks for you.

Sure you can paint yourselves but will it look like a professional painter’s work? There is truly an art to painting. It is very difficult to get a professional looking paint job especially with darker colors. The proper prep work can make the biggest difference of all in the quality of the wall coverings.Unintentional brush or roller marks are characterized as having an uneven flow or leveling failure. Working without a primer on porous surfaces can cause leveling failures; yet poor flow is more often directly related to the style of rollers and brushes used in painting. Always opt for quality brushes, and choose a roller nap length that is suited the type of paint you have selected. Century Painting Contractors always employs professional-quality rollers and brushes, and we are experts in selecting the best tools for your paint job.Mildew is fungal in nature, and often presents as dark spots on paint and various surfaces in warmer, damp areas of homes and buildings. Bathrooms, basements and kitchens are prime targets for mildew, as well as areas where leaks might be prevalent. Mildew should be removed before painting “ideally as soon as possible” and the source or contributing factors should be addressed. Removal requires aggressive cleaning with a bleach solution, and personal protective gear should be worn during the removal process. Century Painting Contractors can evaluate any areas of your interior space where mildew is suspect, and provide recommendations to ensure that your new paint job is beautiful and remains mildew-free.The uneven finish you refer to is called flashing. If primed improperly or not at all, porous surfaces such as drywall have a tendency to soak up paint, leaving an irregular sheen with both dull and shiny spots. Flashing can also occur if primer is not allowed to fully dry prior to applying paint. Extreme temperatures can effect drying time, so it is important to be consistent with heating and cooling measures. Flashing can be corrected by evenly applying an additional finishing coat of paint.Cracking and the subsequent flaking of paint on interior surfaces occurs as paint ages. Oil-based paints lose elasticity over time, and are especially susceptible to cracking. Careful priming of surfaces before painting can increase the resilience of certain types of paint. In order to repair cracking and flaking, loose paint should be scraped off and the area should be sanded. Deeper fissures resulting from cracked materials beneath the paint may also require repair. Special attention should be given to priming any sanded or bare areas to guarantee an even application of paint.Possibly. Windows and doors may have a greater tendency to stick when painted with oil-based paints. More often, though, sticking or blocking occurs when two painted surfaces are pressed together before they are completely dry. Apply paint correctly in even coats, and be sure that each coat is totally dry before applying another. In areas of low ventilation, allow for additional drying time. Surfaces that are coated with several layers of old paint may need to be scraped and cleaned before new paint can be applied.You may be applying too much paint per coat. The dripping that you’re seeing is actually called sagging. Sagging is a common problem that can usually be corrected by adjusting your painting technique. Assuming that your paint is not too thin, evenly apply one coat at a time. Roll or brush out any drip marks while the paint is still wet, and allow each coat to dry before applying another. Adjust the room temperature if it seems cold in order to prevent paint from running. When working on glossy surfaces, sand lightly for better adhesion.The interior of your home or business is where lasting impressions are made. Proper technique when applying paint is the key to achieving professional results.Some fading can be expected over time, especially in areas of frequent sun exposure. Premature fading, however, indicates an improper use of painting materials or possibly the wrong type of paint. Certain grades of paint are formulated with less pigment, making color retention an issue in areas of abundant sunlight. Faded surfaces can be repainted after removing any loose paint and washing the area completely. For large areas, power washing is recommended. Century Painting Contractors can advise you in selecting a color-fast paint that resists fading.Flaking or checking is often seen on exterior wood surfaces. Paints that are applied too thin will be more likely to flake as wood expands and contracts with temperature variance. Proper surface preparation can help improve paint durability. If checking is currently an issue, existing paint should be removed and edges should be sanded properly. Surfaces must also be washed thoroughly, and uneven areas should be repaired before priming.Incompatibility issues can arise when multiple layers of different paints are applied to a surface. For example, latex paints are incompatible with oil-based or alkyd paints. When one is applied over existing layers of another, the older paint can lift, peel, and flake off of the surface. Century Painting Contractors can evaluate existing paint and recommend the proper top coat in order to avoid these challenges. In some cases, removing loose paint, feather sanding and spot priming will also be necessary.In order to avoid peeling, galvanized metal surfaces should be adequately primed and painted with products specifically suited for galvanized metal. If peeling has already occurred, paint must first be removed, along with any underlying rust and corrosion. Galvanized metal surfaces typically require vigorous cleaning, and should be weathered prior to primer and paint application.Absolutely. While some wear and tear will occur naturally over time, using the appropriate primer can extend the life of your paint by providing a uniform surface to which the paint can adhere. Additionally, primers can help to inhibit mildew and prevent nail head rusting on exterior surfaces. But not all primers are created equal. Century Painting Contractors can assist you in selecting the right primer for the task at hand.Your neighbor may be right. Chalking creates a powdery residue on your exterior painted surfaces after long periods of sun exposure and natural weathering. Paints will chalk more quickly if applied too thin, or if a paint designed for interior applications is used outdoors. Certain products are specifically formulated to bind chalk before painting over these surfaces. Chalk dust can also be removed quickly by power washing the effected areas. For smaller sections, a stiff brush and high-pressure hose will effectively remove any residue.The exterior of your home or building can make a winning first impression on your guests or clients. Exterior surfaces face extra wear and tear due to extensive exposure to the elements. Consider using high-quality primers and paints to avoid common problems.Absolutely. While some wear and tear will occur naturally over time, using the appropriate primer can extend the life of your paint by providing a uniform surface to which the paint can adhere. Additionally, primers can help to inhibit mildew and prevent nail head rusting on exterior surfaces. But not all primers are created equal. Century Painting Contractors can assist you in selecting the right primer for the task at hand.There are several great resources on the internet for finding the right color for you. Here are three links that I strongly recommend while trying to figure out the right color scheme for you. Sherwin Williams has several tools for finding the right color. Click Here for Sherwin Williams’ “Color Visualizer” Pittsburgh Paint has tools to find the colors that match your personality Click Here for Pittsburgh Paint’s “The Voice of Color” Benjamin Moore has tools to pick color selections without the hassle of putting it on your walls first. Click Here for Benjamin Moore’s “Personal Color Viewer”Try not to paint too large of an area at one time. Overlapping occurs when a freshly painted section begins to dry before you start painting the adjoining area.