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What happens when the painter finds rotted wood when prepping the house for painting?
During the initial inspection prior to painting a while formulating the proposal not all wood rot is visible to the naked eye. After the house has been cleaned and scraping and sanding has begun we sometimes find soft or rotted wood.
Unfortunately if this was not noted on the original proposal it is probably considered extra work and should be discussed and agreed upon prior to the wood being replaced.
A few questions often asked by the homeowner?
- Why didn’t the painter notice the rotted wood during the inspection of the home? During the
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inspection the scraping and sanding has not begun and rotted wood is often being held together by the paint and looks fine until the prep has begun.
- Why does the wood need replacing in only those areas? The areas that are prone to wood rot are any wood that is exposed to a lot of water and water run off/splash back. Often wood around doors become soft and rotted at the bottom where it meets the ground. This area is exposed to an abundance of moisture with rain and the moist ground.
- Last time you had your house painted they had to replace the same pieces, Why? Some areas receive generous amounts of rain due to run off from different areas of the roof all channeling to one area, keeping this wood wetter than the rest and eventually compromising the wood
- Can I paint that area without replacing the wood? The decision is always yours when agreeing to additional work or continuing the original scope of work.
- What will happen if i decide not to replace the wood? All though it might look good initially after painting the paint will fail prematurely and secondarily we have found ants and critters like the moist wood and you might have other problems down the road other than paint.
- What is the best solution? We almost always recommend replacement but also consider the new alternative which is composite wood. Composite wood is a material that is a mixture of wood fiber, plastic, and some type of binding agent, which will not rot.
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Tips on prevention:
- Inspect the caulking for failure. If the caulking has failed it will allow water to infiltrate areas it should not.
- When wood is near the ground make sure all six sides of the wood has been painted. This will prevent or deter water from prematurely penetrating the wood.
- If paint is chipping or blistering and raw wood is exposed water will also penetrate these areas. Apply a fresh coat of paint after proper preparing the wood.
- The installation of Gutters will help to divert water from areas it should not be.
For a free paint inspection of your home please call me, Ron Ramsden at 1-800-PAINTING or 978-683-9119.