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Paint lifetime: How to improve the longevity of your paintwork

Higgins Coatings |   March 13, 2019 at 10:51 AM

Paint lifetime: How to improve the longevity of your paintwork

When it comes to painting, it can seem that cutting corners to cut costs might lead to savings in the budget. But clever business and facilities managers know that quality products and workmanship, as well as preventative maintenance, will ease budget strains in the long term and extend your paint's lifetime.

To ensure the longevity of your property's paintwork, there are a few things to keep in mind before, during and after the paint job. Here are some ideas:

1. Use quality paints on your surfaces

Cheaper grades of paint (sometimes known as 'contractor's grade') will often bleed through after a short period and won't stand up to the normal wear and tear seen in a busy environment. This usually leads to scratching, peeling and scuffing, all of which contribute to a dilapidated look. Spending a little more on higher-quality paint will mean less maintenance in the long run.

A lower grade of paint may also require more coats, meaning more paint is being used to achieve the necessary coverage and opacity, costing more. Not only is excess paint needed, but more coats also mean the paint job will take longer as the painting contractor is going over the same surface multiple (unnecessary) times.

High-quality paints generally have a quicker drying time, meaning your painting contractor can finish the job in a shorter amount of time. A quick dry time will save you money by cutting down on labour costs, as well as making sure the painting is completed on time.

2. Limit deep colour issues

While deep, dark, bold or particularly vibrant colours may be the contemporary approach to choosing paint colours right now, this decision can have dire effects on your paint's lifetime.

To cut to the chase, lighter paint colours will always outperform the darker shades even in the same paint product, in the same environment and at the same levels of exposure to wear and tear.

Generally, a darker colour will fade - or even change colour entirely - more quickly when exposed to the elements (e.g. the weather, human touch, cleaning etc.). A deeper hue will also soak in the sun’s rays and heat up, which can have adverse effects on the underlying material.

Aside from dubious durability, darker paints often require an undercoat or multiple applications to achieve the desired levels of opacity, all adding dollars to the bottom line.

If possible, choose lighter colours to increase paint lifetime and only use deep hues to accent or where protected from the elements.

3. Deter graffiti and vandalism by cleaning it up quickly

It's always better to deter students from vandalism by implementing graffiti prevention strategies rather than only focusing on removal. That said, the existence of graffiti tends to promote more graffiti, which is why it is essential to keep spaces well-maintained to inspire people to treat them respectfully. An area that appears neglected will often provoke further vandalism, so keep your property's paintwork looking its best by removing graffiti as soon as possible. It might also be worth applying an anti-graffiti coating to hotspot areas which makes graffiti much easier to remove.

4. Hire top-notch painting professionals

A regular preventive maintenance plan will keep your buildings looking good, as well as provide them with the first barrier of defence against wear and tear that could impact your paint's lifetime. Hiring the right people to do the job will ensure the longevity of your paintwork, reducing costs and mitigating against future damage.

Product knowledge and transparent communication are both signs of a good contractor. Look for a contractor who recommends high-quality paints and prioritises durability over speed. In addition, hire a professional who is educated on all of the different aspects of the painting project, including the treatment of common paint problems and the preparation of surfaces to remove, dirt, mould or old flaking paint.

Your painting contractor should also be aware of the best and most appropriate paints to use for different areas. For example, the paint used on a classroom or office wall should be very different from that on a high-use handrail.

Regular planned maintenance of your paintwork is more cost-effective than fixing things on an ad hoc basis. By undertaking preventative painting maintenance, you can minimise natural deterioration and eliminate more costly repairs. Planning your maintenance will also mean your costs are spread out over an extended period, not lumped together in one large sum.

Your paintwork is an investment that needs protecting to ensure the ongoing appearance of your building and reduce future expenses. Learn how to keep your paintwork looking fresh for longer with our handy guide to painting maintenance.

Maintaining Your Painted Property

Higgins Coatings is Australia's premier commercial painting contractor with over 70 years of experience in providing cost-effective painting and tailored maintenance solutions to a broad range of industries including hospitals, aged care, schools, and strata. If you need quality painting services delivered on time and within budget, contact us today for a consultation.