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6 Common Paint Problems and How to Fix Them

Do you plan on giving a fresh coat to your interior? Whether you hire the best paint contractors for a commercial painting job or you do it yourself, there are painting issues that you may encounter and prove costly when things go wrong.

To help you familiarise yourself with what you may be faced with, here are six common paint problems and how to fix and avoid them in the future.

1. Cracking 

Cracking refers to the splitting out of the dry paint film through at least one coat. The vein-like lines may be faint initially, but these cracks will grow and deepen into jagged flakes. 

The main reason behind paint cracks is insufficient surface preparation. If your first coat was not completely dry before the application of the second one, cracking may occur. Cracking also usually happens when you apply your paint too thinly. 

Meanwhile, if you have applied too much paint, it will lead to mud cracks. You will then have too-thick paint that dries with a clumpy, swollen look.

Unfortunately, cracks can also appear due to age. As the paint becomes brittle over time, it becomes less adaptable to fluctuations in temperature and humidity.

How to fix: If your paint has cracked, you’ll need to remove the paint, sand the surface, apply primer and then repaint with a high-quality paint at the recommended spreading rate. During repainting, make sure to load the brush or roller appropriately with paint to avoid too thin or too thick application. If the damage is too extensive, you may need to repaint the entire surface area.

2. Peeling

Peeling is characterised by the peeling off of the outer paint layer. This can be due to the loss of adhesion between a coating and a substrate, high moisture, direct application of paint to a dirty or dusty surface, use of oil-based paint over a wet surface, use of low-quality paint and blistering paint that was allowed to progress. Blisters break and begin to peel after some time. If the peeling is due to poor adhesion, you’ll notice that the paint peels and separates from an earlier paint layer or the surface, leaving some paint behind.

How to fix: Remove or scrape the old peeling paint and then smooth out the affected area by sanding. Afterwards, apply a good sealer and undercoat before repainting with high-quality paint.

3. Blistering and Flaking

When bubbles form from the underlying surface of your wall paint, you’re having blisters. Blistering paint can be recognised by small- to medium-sized bubbles or blisters under the paint film. Eventually, these blisters will begin to flake.

Blistering occurs due to various reasons. Some of these reasons include the moisture that’s been trapped beneath the surface of the paint film, high humidity when doing commercial painting, surface contamination like dirt and oil, quick recoating and application of paint on damp surfaces or over powdery or friable ones. When applied over water-based or a damp surface, oil-based paint also tends to blister.

How to fix: Burst open a few bubbles to know if moisture or heat is the reason behind them. If the blisters contain coats of paint and bursting them show bare substrate, there’s a moisture issue. This can be fixed by doing corrective repairs first: replacing caulking, repairing plumbing and/or increasing ventilation as needed. Afterwards, all blistered paint should be removed, and the surface must be sanded, cleaned, primed and repainted. 

When blistering is caused by heat, the blisters should only affect the previous coat of paint. In this case, the same process can be done. The blistered paint should be removed, and the surface must be sanded, cleaned, primed and repainted.

If bubbles are detected during repainting, reduce your stroke speed when rolling. Also, avoid too quick stirring of paint to prevent the introduction of bubbles to the paint as they could transfer to the surface.

4. Chalking

Chalking is common in arid, sunny climates. You know there’s chalking when there’s a fine, loose, powdery white substance that forms on painted exteriors or any surfaces. It usually happens with pale or very light-coloured flat paints, particularly low-quality paint that contains high levels of pigment extenders. 

Chalking occurs when paint pigments become naturally released due to exposure to weather changes. Other causes are age, colour and the application of paint. There are colours that contain a large amount of tint or can be very bright which can go chalky fast. Additionally, if the paint is thinned out too much, you will observe chalking.

How to fix: Get rid of all the chalky powder on the affected surface by power washing or treating it with trisodium phosphate cleaning solution. Next, rinse it with clean water and allow it to dry before painting with high-quality paint.

5. Mould/Mildew

Moulds and mildew are both fungi that can be black, grey, brown or green spots growing on surfaces. They grow well in areas with high moisture, lack of sunlight and improper ventilation. The presence of mould or mildew may also be caused by the use of low-quality paint that has no/inadequate mildewcide. If the paint was applied over a surface or a paint film that still had mildew on it, mildew may still grow again.

How to fix: Scrub and treat the affected areas with fungicidal wash or household vinegar to kill the spores. Rinse with clean water, allow to dry, apply a blocking primer and recoat with high-quality paint.

6. Bleeding and Staining

Bleeding results in unwanted discolouration. It’s the diffusion or seeping of a soluble dye from the substrate through the top coat colour. Bleeding on the wall surface is common, especially if you’re trying to cover a dark colour with a paler shade of paint. Stains on the surface may also bleed through a repainting job. 

How to fix: If the stain can’t be completely removed, use a high-quality primer to seal the surface. Coating with a primer before painting also helps mask the unwanted stains. Moreover, sealing the original stain is important before you paint the desired colour. 

Hiring a Professional Commercial Painter in Sydney

Many of the common paint problems are due to the lack of knowledge about surface preparation, proper techniques and use of products. That’s why hiring quality commercial painting services is still the best option when thinking about painting or giving your building a new coat. Professionals from these commercial painting services possess the right knowledge, training and expertise to finish a high-quality painting job that can last.

At Talbot’s Services, we assure you that you’ll get the best quality for a commercial painting job at a fair price. Our painting professionals have expertise in carrying out all types of commercial projects, including offices, showrooms, hotels and office complexes. No one does it better than us. Contact us today!

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