Types of Windows

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Choosing a window today is nothing like what it was just ten years ago.  Today there are more window types than ever before, and choosing just the right window to complement a home and to match a homeowner’s pocketbook can be a Herculean task.

How many different choices does a homeowner have when it comes to picking just the perfect window?  There are fix (also called picture); single and double hung; casement and bay; awning and sliders; skylights, and greenhouses.

The most basic window is a fixed, or picture window. This window does not open and can come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Its primary advantage is that it provides a relatively large, unobstructed view of the outdoors.   Its primary disadvantages are that it does not open to allow for air flow, and the outside of the window can only be cleaned from the outside of the house.

Of the windows which open, the simplest is possibly the single hung window. This is the vanilla ice cream of windows: plain and basic.  Two sheets of glass within a single frame, one sheet in the bottom half of the window and the second sheet in the top half of the frame, each sheet framed within the overall frame of the window. The two sheets of glass are offset just enough that the lower portion of the window can be pulled upward, allowing outside air to enter a room. The main advantages of this type of window include its relatively low cost and the fact that it does provide some ventilation. Its disadvantages are that most of its ventilation only takes place if there is wind outside and the cross bar obstructs the view.

The double hung window is similar to the single hung window described above, except that with the double hung Vinyl9500-Series_Room-Scene_Interior_4window, not only can the lower pane of glass be raised upward, but the top pane of glass can be lowered downward to create a window that can be open at the top as well as at the bottom. It is also possible to partially open the top pane as well as the bottom pane at the same time. One of the primary advantages of this type of window is that when both the top and bottom of the window is open, cool air can come in through the open lower pane, while hot air escapes through the open upper window. The only real disadvantage is the rail in the center of the window which obstructs the view.

A casement window is a single sheet of glass in a frame which is hinged on either the right or the left side and can be opened outward with a hand crank. The advantage of a casement window is that they provide excellent ventilation, and a well-made casement window also seals tightly against outside noise. The disadvantage of a casement window is that, because it opens outward, it cannot be used next to a sidewalk or even a deck. Also the hand crank can become tiresome.

An awning window is similar to the casement window, except that it is hinged at the top and opens outward with MarvinUlitmatePushOutFrench_overa crank handle. An awning window is often placed near the top of a wall so the window can let hot air escape. Its main advantage is that, because of the way this window opens, it can be left open when it rains. Its primary disadvantage is that, because it is so small and only opens partially, it cannot be easily used to escape in case of an emergency.

A gliding window consists of two panes of glass with a vertical bar between them. The panes are offset just enough that one pane can be slid to either the right or the left. The main advantages of this type of window are that, because it does not open outward, it can be used next to sidewalks, patios and decks. This type of window also has a large enough opening to use in case of an emergency. The primary disadvantage of this type of window is that you can only open one side at a time.

A skylight, also called a ceiling window, is installed in a ceiling.  Some skylights do not open, and others open just MarvinGliderWindow_220x3501slightly to allow for ventilation. The primary advantage of a skylight is the amount of light that can be let into otherwise somewhat dark spaces. The primary disadvantage is that the homeowner must climb onto the roof to clean the exterior of the window.

A bay window, also known as a bow window, can create a very dramatic effect. This window extends out from the wall of the house, giving a room the feeling of additional space and providing a great deal of exterior light.  Generally a bay window’s central pane of glass is stationary, but the panes on the extended sides of the window may open.

The primary advantages of a bay window include the dramatic look it gives to the home’s appearance and the extra light it allows in. The primary disadvantages of a bay window are the cost 4and the difficulty of cleaning all of the various panes of glass.

A greenhouse window is sometimes added in a kitchen. This is in effect a small bay window, designed to hold a few small potted plants, often herbs.  The primary advantage to this type of window is that it allows a homeowner to grow fresh herbs virtually all year round. The primary disadvantage is that, when the home is sold, this type of window only adds to the value of a home if the new owner wants a mini greenhouse built into the kitchen.

The homeowner must keep in mind that each type of window comes in a variety of frames: wood, vinyl, GreenhouseWindowaluminum or steel. Each window also comes with a variety of coatings available on the glass and most come single or double-paned, many with an inert gas (such as argon) between the panes for added insulation.

The choice of windows may seem overwhelming, but homeowners can get great advice from the window specialists at United Home Experts. These design experts have years of experience here in the northeast and can quickly help a homeowner determine the exact window that complements any portion of a home and the exact window that also fits into the homeowner’s pocketbook.

The point is, a homeowner need not feel as if he or she is all alone out there in the window jungle – help is always available. For more information on windows, read our main window page!

Five Common Roofing Application Mistakes

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Successful roofing application requires that installers adhere to certain proper application methods. It is especially easy for inexperienced roofers and do-it-yourself homeowners to make certain roofing application mistakes simply because they are not aware of the various things that can go wrong. Here is a list of some of the most common mistakes and what can be done to avoid them, thus ensuring a successful roofing project.

Mistake: Not including the starter strip.

Problem: This does not provide the proper shingle application base.

Fix: Apply starter shingles at the rake, continuing along the eaves. The starter shingles should be cut to match the existing first course’s exposure. For new construction shingles, this means a measurement of nine inches. Three-tab repair shingles should measure five inches. Then about six inches off the length of the first shingle should be trimmed to stagger the shingles out from the first full course.

Mistake: Not ensuring that the shingles overhang at the eaves.

Problem: This could contribute to roof blow-off.

Fix: Make sure that the shingles overhang the eaves and rakes by at least one-half of an inch. There should be a spacing of about one-sixteenth of an inch between the shingles. Finish nailing three inches above the eaves, using the proper number of nails according to the geographic wind zone.

Mistake: Not properly aligning the shingles.

Problem: This is not at all aesthetically pleasing.

Fix: Vertical and horizontal shingle alignment will be required. This is best done in new shingle applications by using the chalk line. In repair application, the new shingles should be aligned with the shingles that are already in place. Horizontal chalk lines should be set every 10 inches from the bottom of the first course up. Vertical chalk lines should be set every 36 inches from the roof ridge to each shingle’s end, along the first course.

Mistake: Not properly nailing the shingles.

Problem: This could potentially lead to roof blow-off.

Fix: Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations in installing the proper number of shingles for the specific geographic wind zone. Four nails will be required in typical applications of three-tab shingles, but six nails will be required in areas where the wind velocity gets very high.

Placement of the nails is as important as the number of nails being used. Look at the manufacturer’s required placement areas to assess proper placement of the roofing nails. Drive the nails straight into the deck, never nailing from an angle if at all possible.

Know what nail length is needed before roofing application is attempted. Nails should penetrate the deck by at least three-quarters of an inch. Standard roofing nails with barbed shanks are typically 11-gauge or 12-gauge and have heads with diameters anywhere between three-eighths and seven-sixteenths of an inch.

Mistake: Using asphalt-based cements for shingle repair.

Problem: Use of incompatible materials contributes to further shingle damage.

Fix: Apply asphalt-based cement only on the underside of shingles. Damaged shingles with evidence of curling, cracking, opening, or splitting should all be replaced with brand new shingles.

This brief list represents just a few of the things that can go wrong in roofing application. Before attempting anything of this nature on their own, homeowners should consult with the professionals at United Home Experts, who can provide much needed information and advice about the best ways to repair and/or replace a roof and provide free estimates on complete roof replacement.

10 Beautiful Roofing Shapes and Styles

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When it comes to the construction of a house, there are many roofing shapes and styles from which to choose  –  so many, in fact, that many people may not have the time to research all of them. Here is a quick list of 10 of the RoofStylesmost popular and functional roof styles. We can install asphalt roof shingles on any of these styles of homes, except flat roofs, we use a different material called EPDM.

1. Arched Roof – This roofing type is most likely not going to be used for the whole building construction, as they can be costly to install, but can be used as an accent to add tremendous aesthetic value to the home.

2. Bonnet Roof – This type of roof is also not usually used on a whole house. It can mainly be found gracing the back porch or a decorative veranda. This roof type is similar to both the hip roof and the pyramid roof, which are mentioned below. The main difference is that two of the roof’s sides slope out at an angle.

3. Cross-Gabled Roof – A gabled roof is one that basically looks like a triangle if viewing from the front yard. There are many types of gabled roofs. The cross gabled roof is a special type that is often used in homes with additional wings, so that each section of the home has its own triangular roof.

4. Flat Roof – This is one of the easiest types of roof to identify because it is very common – and flat, as its name implies. Flat roofs are easier to construct than any other roof type. They are safer to stand on, and they are generally more accessible for maintenance and repairs. The main drawback to this type of roof is that it does require more maintenance than other types, largely because the lack of slope can tend to accumulate debris.

5. Gambrel Roof – This type of roof is very similar to the Mansard Roof. This Dutch-inspired type of roof is made up of four slopes, two on each side of the home. The lower slope is a much steeper vertical style than the upper slope, which might be visible from below, but it might not.

6. Hip Roof – As mentioned before, this roof is very similar to the bonnet roof. The main difference is that the four sides of the roof meet at a ridge or a flat spot, instead of coming to a point at the top. This enhances the practicality of the roof type.

7. Mansard Roof – This type of roof is quite similar to the Gambrel Roof mentioned above, with a few minor differences. The main one is that the Mansard Roof does not have the vertical gable ends and the roof overhanging the facade of the home, as is the case in the Gambrel style. This French style of roof offers extra room for increased living or storage space on the top story of a house.

8. Pyramid Roof – True to its name, this roof type is shaped like a pyramid. This is another type of roof that is not practical to use on a whole house, but can add a beautiful decorative touch to small home sections or to corresponding outside structures like garages.

9. Saltbox Roof – This is interesting type of roof is asymmetrical in form and features a long pitched roof with one very long side and one very short side. Oftentimes, this results in a house that is multi-storied in the sense that one side of the construction is only one story, while the other side of the building features two stories.

10. Skillion Roof – This roof type has one single sloping roof surface. It looks like one half of a triangular roof, and it can be compared to a flat roof whose roof sides have been inclined just slightly. It is not often used in full home construction but can often be seen as a special roofing option for multi-level homes.

For project examples and more detailed information about different roofing shapes and styles when determining which ones might best suit their needs, homeowners should contact the professionals at United Home Experts.

The Durability Of Fiber Cement Vs Everlast Composite Siding

It can be hard for a homeowner to decide which siding material to have installed on their home. There are so FiberCement-BlogPhoto34many exterior siding options available these days. Two popular choices are fiber cement and Everlast’s composite siding. One of the most important things to consider when researching siding options is the durability of materials in various environments.

Some homeowners choose fiber-cement siding for their homes because it has an appearance that imitates wood and it costs much less than the real thing. This type of siding is made of cellulose fibers, sand and cement. The thickness and density of this material can vary. When lower-density products are cut, the edge is rough. Higher-density products have a much cleaner edge. Everlast composite siding is also a blend of materials. It is made up of PVC resins, crushed stone, and polymers. It does not contain any cellulose fibers, unlike fiber cement.

The installation of fiber-cement siding sometimes causes problems with moisture due to the fact that it is made up of wood particles. When used in areas that can receive exposure to moisture, it can peel. This looks very unsightly and most homeowners choose to have affected areas repaired. Since Everlast does not contain cellulose fibers, it does not cause moisture problems.macluresiding

Everlast composite siding is colored through the product. There is never a need for painting the siding since it has a lifetime warranty against fading (see warranty for details and limitations). It can be painted if a homeowner decides they would like to change the siding to a different color in the future. Fiber-cement siding has to be painted every 7 to 15 years on average.

The cost of painting a home can be an added expense that homeowners may not want to incur that often. This expense is something that is not incurred routinely with those who chose the siding produced by Everlast.

There are other differences between fiber cement concrete siding and Everlast siding that homeowners should know about. Everlast siding is not as heavy, so there is less of a chance of chipping during installation. Fiber cement is very heavy and may become scratched or chipped during the installation process. Fiber cement siding needs to be inspected often so that any developing issues can be caught and corrected early. Cracked caulking may need to be replaced to prevent moisture damage. If mildew occurs, the siding may have to be wiped down with a bleach solution. Since the siding manufactured by Everlast does not cause moisture problems, recurrent inspections are not needed.

Fiber cement siding and Everlast composite siding are both popular siding choices. Everlast siding may be best for homeowners who desire siding that is both durable and requires the least amount of maintenance possible. Some people do not mind having to have their homes painted every 7 to 15 years. However, some people do not want to have to go through that experience so often. Homeowners who are not up to routinely inspecting their siding after installation, and do not want to have a professional do so, should consider Everlast siding.

Roofing Products for New England, What Are My Options?

Cedar thumbnailMost people assume they only have one option when it comes to replacing their roof, and that is asphalt shingles with either a fiberglass or organic base. However, there are many other less common options available for roof replacement. The question our customers ask us is, “are these roofing types right for my home?” Here is a list of pro’s and con’s for each category to help you decide.

Asphalt Shingles: A base material combined with either an organic fiber mat or fiberglass core. Each type is impregnated with asphalt and coated with mineral granules to add color and texture. An adhesive back combined with nails is the fastening method used.

Pros: Largest variety of color and style, Many warranty options through certified companies, Generally the least expensive option

Cons: Less impact resistant than some other options, Does not reflect heat

Metal Roofing: Once limited to low-slope structures, standing seam steel roofs can now be used on steeper roofs as well.

Pros: Durability, practically maintenance-free, heat reflective

Cons: Aesthetics are not pleasing to most people, more expensive than asphalt, Noisy, Limited options

Slate Tile Roofing: One of the oldest forms of roofing in New England, it is still used today on certain more traditional homes and in specific neighborhoods.

Pros: Traditional appearance for older homes, Long lasting

Cons: Requires reinforced roof to handle the weight, Difficult to repair, Limited styles and colors, Very expensive

Composite Slate:  The composite slate market is on the rise in the roofing industry. Lamarite® Slate composite shingles seem to be leading the pact.

Pros:  Accurately resembles slate tiles, Less expensive than slate

Cons:  Limited styles and colors, Few roofers in New England have experience with it

Start here if you’re in need of a roofing contractor in MA.

Interlock: Interlock roofing is a composite roof system made mostly from recycled materials.

Pros: Durability, Longevity, more variety than other types of roofing except asphalt

Cons:  Aesthetics, Much more expensive than other options, short track record

Wood Shingle Roofing:

Pros: natural aesthetic beauty for country style homes

Cons: quality and longevity can vary significantly, attracts moss and algae, more expensive than asphalt roofing

Find out how much does a new roof cost.

United Home Experts receives coveted “Award of Excellence”

United Home Experts receives Norandex Award of Excellence

United Home Experts receives 2015 Award of Excellence

For the third year in a row, United Home Experts has been given the honor of Norandex Building Materials’ Award of Excellence.

 

This is a great honor as Norandex has been one of America’s leading exterior building suppliers for over 65 years.

 

“We are committed to providing our customers with excellent products and service and this award is confirmation that we are fulfilling that commitment,” said United Home Experts President, John Dudley.

 

Since 1998 United Home Experts has been offering New England homeowners long term, low maintenance solutions for their Roofing, Siding and Window needs.

United Home Experts Training

2015 install training! 25 installers In our warehouse learning industry best practices.
our training house is better than most sheds! we built this for siding, roofing, window installation training.
In our new warehouse we can handle over 100 windows and doors at a time. In 2015 we anticipate over 1500 will make a pass through en route to customer homes.
Forklift training in our new warehouse.
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Composite Siding Pleases the Cambridge Historical Traditionalists

United Home Experts received approval to install Composite Siding in a historically significant and traditional section of Cambridge, MA., a city known for tough building laws, and historical regulations. Because of low-maintenance properties and authentic look, Composite siding products are an increasingly popular solution even in aesthetically conservative sections of New England.

Cambridge, MA one of the oldest cities in America, is best known for the Harvard University and M.I.T. campuses. United Home Experts has completed several fiber-cement siding projects in Cambridge, of which the most recent at 185 Hancock St. The board members responsible for deciding what product and company to use for the siding replacement project were impressed that United HomeExperts, using Composite Siding, offered a low-maintenance solution without trading loss of aesthetic and traditional appeal. John Dudley, President of United Home Experts says, “Composite Siding has found it’s place in New England, especially for homeowners who want to increase the beauty of their home but are tired of the amount of maintenance required for traditional wood siding. We have found that these same homeowners are very careful not to compromise the integrity or historic value of their homes by using products like vinyl siding.”

United Home Experts is known for its commitment to quality workmanship and low-maintenance, long-lasting solutions including Roofing, Siding, Windows, and Painting. For more information about this project, or fiber-cement siding in general, contact United Home Experts in Ashland, MA 888.724.6865.

United Home Experts Name Exclusive Regional Dealer of Generations Insulated Siding

Polystyrene insulated vinyl is the latest innovation in exterior siding products. In a time of soaring heating expenses, some of these products offer relief. Norandex Reynolds has set the benchmark for this technology with their Generations® thermal-core, insulated clapboard. They have chosen United Home Experts of Ashland, MA to be their exclusive dealer of Generations® in Eastern Massachusetts.

Generations thermal-core vinyl siding is perfect for home-owners seeking to decrease energy bills by increasing the insulation of their exterior walls. It can increase the wall R-value by 2-3 points. John Dudley, Owner of United Home Experts says, “With oil prices over $3 per gallon, and natural gas over $2.50 per GGE, homeowners are turning to United to help alleviate energy usage.”

Generations® siding also resists damage from flying debris 400% more than traditional non-insulated vinyl siding. Because the polystyrene contours to the shape of the clapboard, no space is left between the wall and siding. Dudley notes that, “The product’s impact resistance is appealing to homeowners with trees surrounding their home or children.”

United Home Experts specializes in siding, roofing, windows, and painting, and has been in business for 10 years. They develop experienced, skilled craftsmen and field managers who are focused on customer satisfaction, and use the latest technology and equipment on projects to increase efficiency while improving quality. For more information, contact us today.

Wood Window Replacement – When Is It Time?

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Wood windows that were built 100 or more years ago (the double-framed variety) were built to last; however, those that were built 30 or 40 years ago were not. These windows are subject to wood rot and window shrinkage. The energy efficiency of the glass is often under question in windows of this age. For this reason, once these more recently constructed wood windows start showing these signs of aging (wood rot, cracking, mold, etc.) it is time to think about replacing them.

Wood rots when it stays wet for a lengthy period of time. Usually, for wood rot to occur the moisture content of the wood has to stay at more than 20 percent. This moisture level provides the best breeding ground for the fungi that cause wood rot. Other types of mold can also grow to extremely problematic levels in wetter areas, and this can contribute to wood window decay.

Cracks are self-explanatory, and they are not difficult to detect. Wood cracks when it gets old or wet, or when it isPeelingPaint exposed to extreme temperature changes and/or severe, harsh weather. Small cracks in the wood usually aren’t problematic, although if left untreated they could become much more of a problem.

Some cases of mold, wood rot, and cracking can be repaired, rather than replaced. This saves the homeowner time and money. But this quick fix may not be able to protect the window and the surrounding structure of the home from experiencing further damage. In this case, it is important to have a better idea of the extent of the wood damage.

How does one know when a wood window needs to be replaced? Basically, a wood window needs to be replaced if the wood rot, mold, and cracks penetrate the surface and cause significant structural damage to the home. Also, there are many homes in the region that still have windows that are over 50 years old and the technology is simply outdated and no longer effective because they can’t maintain the home’s temperature. It will be difficult for most homeowners to fully assess the condition of their wood windows by themselves, as there may be many hidden problem areas they might not see or know to look for. It is recommended that anyone concerned with the condition of the windows consult with the professional at United Home Experts.

These experts will be able to help assess whether the window simply needs to be repaired or whether a total Vinyl9500-Series_Room-Scene_Interior_4window replacement is in order. They will also be able to help homeowners decide on which type of replacement window is best for the needs of their homes. There are three main types of replacement windows: full-frame units, insert replacements and sash kits. Sash replacement kits are very popular these days because they provide an old window frame with all new, fully movable parts. But the other replacement window types also have their advantages.

It is incredibly difficult for the do-it-yourself homeowner to decide on and to complete a wood window replacement project of this magnitude, and it is not recommended that it be attempted without professional help, due to the complicated installation process and the possibility that warranties will be voided if installation errors occur. The professionals at United Home Experts are more than willing to provide a free consultation to help homeowners understand and take care of all their window replacement needs. For more information about window replacement, click here for our main window page!

Pricing for Outdoor Paint

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There is nothing like a quality paint job on an exterior to add visual appeal, protection and value to the home.  Painting a home’s exterior takes time and consideration, particularly when it comes to choosing outdoor paint.  It is not just the color that needs careful consideration.  The quality of the outdoor paint will make a substantial difference in its durability and its ability to keep the color fresh and new-looking after several years of exposure to the elements.  Homeowners in harsh and extreme weather conditions such as in the New England states must pay particular attention to the quality of the exterior paint.

When it comes to outdoor paint prices, it is a bad decision to purchase the cheapest paint available, even if the color is perfect.  The pricier paint is actually formulated differently than the cheap brands.  The higher price is due to the cost of the premium ingredients used in manufacturing the paint.

Any home improvement store, large or small, will offer a massive array of outdoor paint colors.  The brands they stock will differ, however.  Some will offer Behr or Olympic; others Valspar, Glidden or Dutch Boy.  Sherwin-Williams has its own chain of retail stores.  Following are the top three outdoor paint brands used and recommended by professional painting contractors.

I just want to make a clear indication that these remarks are only a matter of our own opinions and not off of facts from the manufacturers.

Sherwin-Williams Duration

This brand is the most highly recommended paint of professional home remodeling contractors.  Duration is their swpaintcantop-of-the-line.  Contractors prefer it, even though it is a bit pricey with prices ranging from $60 per gallon and lower, the quality of its one-coat coverage and excellent formulation is unmatchable.  The cost per gallon is definitely offset by the savings in labor and quantity of paint required for the job. I’ll have you agree with me on a couple details:

  • Does it make sense to save time and paint once? Yes.
  • Would you save money in the end because you don’t have to do multiple coatings? Yes, because multiple coatings means more paint, which equals more money.
  • Do you want your home to look nice? Well, duh!

The solution is to simply purchase a higher quality paint that will out-perform your expectations and give you that dreamy look you’ve been looking for.

Homeowners in New England with its extreme climate can turn to the professionals at United Home Experts who highly recommend and use Sherwin-Williams outdoor paint for all the reasons mentioned here.

Benjamin Moore Aura

Benjamin Moore’s answer to Sherwin-Williams Duration is its Aura line of paint. These two would be close picks duration homeof professional painting contractors if it were not for the price difference.

Valspar DuraMax

It is a far less expensive exterior paint at $33 to $35 per gallon. It claims to be self-priming and is said that it requires only one coat for good coverage. Some homeowners give Valspar DuraMax a high rating, though most professional home remodeling contractors shy away from the big box house brands. In my own experience of painting my own home and many relatives’ homes, many of these lower priced paints do not perform well enough to meet my expectations and require multiple coatings.

Do not be fooled by the price; expensive paints are worth their salt because they are genuinely higher quality, so if the price seems too low to be true, it is almost certain that the quality has suffered.

It must be noted that Sherwin-Williams Duration and Benjamin Moore’s Aura are the top-of-the-line paint formulations for both paint manufacturers, with Sherwin-Williams offering excellent quality at a more competitive price than Benjamin Moore.  The companies also offer a range of quality paints at many price levels.

Homeowners thinking about repainting the exterior of their homes should bear all these facts in mind.  It does appear that the more expensive paint can actually saves them money in the long run.  Whether handling a massive exterior paint job themselves or hiring a contractor to get the job done, it would be wise to seek the advice of professionals like those at United Home Experts. For our main painting page, click here!

Durable Types of Outdoor Paint

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Oil-based paints have excellent qualities of adherence, which is essential for a durable outdoor paint product.  Their main disadvantage is brittleness that can lead to cracking.

Even with this drawback, oil-based outdoor paint is the desired formulation under two circumstances.  The first has to do with an exterior surface that is heavy with chalking.  The second issue crops up when the new oil-based paint is being applied over four or more layers of old oil-based paint.  In both instances, only the oil-based paint should be used.

Oil-based paints should never be applied directly to unpainted masonry or galvanized iron.  The paint fails rapidly on these surfaces.

Any messes incurred with oil-based paints demand that they be cleaned up with paint thinner and rags.  The brushes and rollers must also be soaked in thinner until completely free of paint in order to be reused.  Unlike water, paint thinner has a very strong odor and the thinner-soaked rags used for cleanup must be properly disposed of as paint thinner is highly flammable.

Repainting an exterior requires much research into the outdoor paint type and color as the project will make asherwinwilliamspaintbrushca significant dent in the budget.  The results must not only be visually appealing, but that visual appeal must last a long time so the process does not have to be repeated in a few years.  Choosing the right type of paint for the job may be the most important consideration of all in terms of durability.

The New England states are fortunate to have a rich mix of historical homes, traditional homes and homes featuring the most modern designs and amenities.  Homeowners there need professional advice before considering repainting their exterior.  Here at United Home Experts, our team can advise you on the nature of their existing surface and how to properly deal with it.

For more detailed information and free estimates, contact the United Home Experts. For our main painting page, click here!

Outdoor Painting Tips

Every eight to ten years, the exterior of a home needs to be painted.  A house requires paint for a variety of reasons.  One reason can be aesthetics.  The old paint job is simply looking shabby, making the home look old, rundown and as if it is not being properly cared for.

But there is also another reason for painting: paint protects a home.  Wood and other materials need a coat of paint to protect them from the damaging aspects of the elements.  With regular and proper painting, a home can last for hundreds of years.

Painting a home is a big job that most homeowners would rather give to qualified professionals, but knowing how the process works can aid in the decision-making process.  The following outdoor painting tips are intended to make the homeowner’s job easier, smoother, and more long-lasting.

  1. Start by investing in top-quality equipment. This means spending the extra few cents for top-of-the-line paintrollerwhite-resized-600rollers and paint brushes.  Use high grade paint as well. Using high grade supplies and tools will result in a faster and better job. Remember, a workman is only as good as his tools.  A homeowner cannot expect to get superior results using inferior tools or supplies.
  2. Spring or fall are usually the best times of the year for outdoor painting. Do not paint if temperatures are below 40 degrees Fahrenheit or above 80 degrees. Try not to paint in high wind or in direct sunlight if possible. Too much direct sun can cause paint to dry too quickly, which can cause wrinkling and even cracking and flaking. If possible, plan paint jobs to “follow the shade.”
  3. Don’t skimp on time. Painting even a medium-size house is a huge undertaking – perhaps several weeks or even months. And keep in mind that the painting itself is actually less than half the job. Most of the homeowner’s time will be spent preparing the house to be painted. Preparation is the key.
  4. Wash the house. Use a power washer if possible, but the homeowner needs to take his or her time and cleanpowerwashing the house of all dirt, oil, grease, grime and mildew. This should include a detergent and hand scrubbing (using a nylon brush) of any stubborn areas. Plants should be protected from detergents and soaps by plastic drop-cloths.
  5. Repair areas that have become damaged in any way. If possible, discern the reason for the damage and solve the underlying problem, or the damage may simply repeat itself in a short time. Scrape and/or use a wire brush on any spots where old paint is flaking, blistering or peeling. A wire brush attachment for an electric drill can speed this process considerably. Sand areas that are peeling or flaking, getting down to raw wood whenever possible. As much old paint as possible, particularly lose old paint, must be removed before applying new paint.
  6. Lay in a supply of blue painter’s tape. This is the tape the homeowner applies to both certain parts of the woodwork as well as to the edges of windows and other areas on which the homeowner does not want the primary color of paint applied. When the blue tape is removed, following the final coat of the primary color, the area under the tape is paint-free and the special blue painter’s tape does not leave adhesive behind on the unpainted surfaces.

    While a homeowner may wish to choose an oil-based paint under some circumstances, most homeowners opt instead for a good grade latex paint. Latex protects as well as oil-based paints but latex paints go on smoother and easier and clean up with soap and water.

  7. Homeowners should always use the best quality paint that is consistent with their budget. The reason is swpaintcansimple. Lower-quality paints almost always take more coats to provide the same level of protection. The last thing a homeowner wants is for an undercoat to bleed through the final coat of a new color.
  8. Bleed through can be averted by painting a primer coat before apply the final color. A primer is a light-colored (often white) lesser-quality paint designed to cover the old color, at least primarily. It is acceptable for the old color to show through the primer to some extent, since the final paint will be applied over the primer coat.  Applying a primer coat requires the home to be prepped first and entails a large amount of work, time and expense.

However, applying a primer coat can be worth the time and the expense, especially when radically changing the color of a house and there is the possibility that the old paint will show through the new paint. It is less expensive to apply a coat of primer and then a coat of the more expensive paint, and it is also cost effective to put on one primer coat and two additional coats of more expensive paint as opposed to three coats of the more expensive paint.

As alluded to earlier, quality tools make all the difference. When painting a home’s exterior the homeowner should purchases the following, at a minimum:

  • Nylon/polyester brushes if using latex paint – natural bristle brushes if using oil-based paint. At a minimum, a homeowner should purchase a 4-inch brush and a 2-and-a-half-inch brush. Never dip a brush all the way into paint. Load a brush only half way with paint and then scrape the brush on the side of the paint can to remove excess paint before applying paint in a long, slow stroke. Practice will allow the homeowner to apply an even coat of paint without visible brush strokes.
  • Two different-sized rollers, one 7-inch roller and one 4-in roller should allow for the fast application of paint in any area. The smaller roller is often useful in applying paint to siding.
  • “Cutting in” refers to using a paint brush to paint an area about 4-inches wide around corners and anywhere a roller cannot paint. Only cut in a relatively small area before covering the rest of an area with a roller as it is best to roller over cut-in paint that is still wet.

These basic tips help to give a sense of all that is required to repaint the exterior of a home. Homeowners who AndersenExterior-04-075-resized-600decide that painting a home is beyond their skill level, or for homeowners who simply wish to have a professional do the job, the qualified staff at United Home Experts have years of experience. They can paint a home quickly and they clean up after themselves completely, do everything quickly and also provide a written guarantee.

Repainting a home not only enhances the home’s appearance and increases its value, a new-looking home also gives a homeowner a sense of pride of ownership which few other things in this world can match.

First-time homeowners should not attempt to paint the exterior of their homes by themselves. For more detailed information and free estimates, contact the United Home Experts. For our main painting page,click here!

Repainting Outdoors – Reviving Your Home’s Exterior Paint

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Is It Time to Repaint the Outside of The House?

The outside of a home is one of the first things guests see when they come for a visit, and it might be the only part of the home that people passing on the street might see. As they say, first impressions are everything, so homeowners will most certainly want to make sure that their homes look their best from the outside.

Repainting outdoors can have a very dramatic effect on a home’s curb appeal. Many people live in a house for years without ever refreshing the paint on the outside – either because they don’t think it needs it, or because they don’t know the best way to go about it. The fact is, though, that there are some times when the outside of a house really needs to be repainted.

If the exterior paint is stained, chipped or fading, paint repair is definitely in order. Exterior paint damage can lead 2to further damage to the home’s wood structure, and even internal damage to the home itself. Faulty paint can ultimately lead to a number of more serious issues for homeowners. Anyone who is unsure of whether the outside of their house needs to be repainted or not should consult with the professionals at United Home Experts.

Tips for Repainting the Home’s Exterior

After the decision is made to repaint the exterior of the home, the first thing many homeowners will want to do is pick a color for the exterior. Sherwin-Williams has a wide variety of outdoor paints that come in a number of different colors. All these color choices can be daunting for the inexperienced home remodeler. Again, a meeting with the United Home Experts should help any homeowner clarify their home’s needs.

Before repainting, the surface will need to be brushed free of dirt and debris, smoothed, and primed. In addition to paint colors, Sherwin-Williams has a good selection of exterior paint primers that can be tinted to match whatever shade is chosen for the job. Before priming is done, however, it will be necessary to remove any existing paint on the exterior surface of the house.

The homeowner will also need to make determinations regarding how they want to be apply the paint. Brushes are better for small detail work, while sprayers are obviously better for larger surfaces.  Rollers can also be useful for outdoor painting because they come in a variety of shapes and sizes.

There are many more things that need to be taken into consideration before a repainting effort is made. Somepaintrollerwhite-resized-600 seasons of the year are better than others for painting outdoors. Fall, for example, is a great time for painting outside because the paint needs outside dry time to cure. Rain and humidity should be avoided at all costs. Also, there is the issue of whether or not the homeowner knows how to add aluminum wedges to improve air circulation to prevent moisture problems.

First-time homeowners should not attempt to paint the exterior of their homes by themselves. For more detailed information and free estimates, contact the United Home Experts. For our main painting page,click here!