Outdoor paint and timber care take priority this season

by | Oct 20, 2023

After three years of unusually wet weather, this summer is the perfect time for your customers to start or finish up their outdoor paint and varnish projects.

The Bureau of Meteorology has officially announced Australia has entered El Niño, predicting above-median maximum temperatures and below-median rainfall for the majority of the nation. But the dryer weather generates the perfect opportunity for getting those overdue outdoor and external paint and varnish projects done. 

Whether it be painting the external walls of a house or staining decking timber, now is the time for your customers to freshen up, seal and protect those areas outside of the home from future exposure and restore them to their former glory. 

Conquering weatherboard paint projects for summer

A fresh coat of paint does more than give a weatherboard home a facelift, according to Murray Tocchet, Haymes Paint’s Senior Product Manager. It is also an essential part of combating the damaging effects of Australia’s harsh climate.

“While a paint job can last 20 years, increasingly frequent weather extremes are taking a toll on our homes, leading to the need for more regular weatherboard upkeep,” he says.

“With a hot, dry summer ahead, now is the perfect time for homeowners to take a pre-emptive strike and return their weatherboards to their former glory.”

Murray says when helping homeowners restore their weatherboards it is vital to ensure they know the three P’s – planning, preparation and painting.

Step 1 – Planning

While there are no hard and fast rules, Murray says, it is typical to combine two or three different colours, such as a main colour for the weatherboards, a brighter, deeper colour for the trims and possibly a third colour for the front door. Using contrasting colours on the trims and door can make these features ‘pop’ and add interest or personality to a home.

Haymes Paint’s latest Colour Library Vol. 17 Origins is a great place for inspiration and to keep up with the latest trends. For homeowners who want to achieve a seamless feel between their exterior and interior spaces, the colours featured in the Solid Ground palette allow homeowners to achieve this look in a subtle, yet impactful way.

Step 2 – Preparation

Have your customers clear out the work area by removing items close to the walls and lay drop sheets to protect decks, paths and gardens. Now it is time for some dirty work. The weatherboards will need a thorough wash with Haymes Paint Unikleen. They should then be rinsed and allowed to dry for at least two hours.

Next, advise your customers to check the adhesion of the existing paint by cutting an X into the surface, applying adhesive tape over the X and then peeling it off, Murray says. 

“If the tape removes any of the existing paint, the previous coats in that area will need to be removed by scraping and sanding the weatherboards back to a bare surface. If the ‘X test’ does not remove any paint, the weatherboards can simply be sanded back to a dull, smooth finish.”

Step 3 – Painting

Now the real fun begins. Haymes Paint Ultra Premium Solashield Exterior paint is ideal for external jobs and is available in low sheen, satin or gloss. It provides protection against UV rays, repels dirt and mould, is salt resistant and is self-priming on most surfaces, which will save time and money. 

“Personal preference dictates when choosing the paint finish, but generally low sheen is used on weatherboards and higher gloss options on doors and trims,” Murray says.

When painting, it is important customers know to start from the top with the gutters and fascia, then move to the weatherboards, brushing the underside edge before moving on to the face of the boards. Once the first coat is done, they should wait at least two hours before applying the second, following the same processes.

Finally, paint the trims with Haymes Paint Ultratrim, a durable product specifically formulated for high-contact areas, including window and door frames.

To maintain that newly-painted look and prolong the paintwork it is important homeowners clean their weatherboards yearly. This can be done using Haymes Paint Unikleen and a soft-bristled brush.

Whether a DIY project or a professional job, painting is a cost-effective way to refresh a weatherboard home and protect it against the elements. Tackling the assignment this spring will make for a much more relaxing and enjoyable summer for your customers.

A little TLC (timber loving care)

Sikkens Timber Care has been in Australia for over 60 years, providing proven protection for the tough Australian climate. The differing levels of heat, cold, humidity and dry areas around Australia mean Sikkens has developed products that cater for all climates and every project.

Different timber types have individual requirements when it comes to aesthetics, protection and the timber’s level of exposure. Sikkens oil and water-based products have been designed for both hardwood and softwood types of timbers.

“The Sikkens Cetol HLSe is a great product for penetration of both hard and softwoods and provides a natural or low lustre finish for all surfaces. This is great for decking and also areas such as outdoor furniture and handrails, where hardwoods are mainly used, and also areas that experience high wear,” National Specification Manager Stuart McLean said.

“HLSe is a popular choice as it lets the timber do the talking with regards to aesthetics. It also helps to provide an even substrate for overcoating with higher film build products such as Sikkens Cetol Deck for areas being walked on, and Cetol Filter 7 Plus for softwoods that require a softer finish (flexible).”

Sikkens performed a case study using their Cetol Filter 7 Plus stain for a property in Bringelly New South Wales to test its protective capabilities when paired with its Cetol HLSe in an outdoor area.

“Cetol Filter 7 Plus stain is a product especially made for exterior windows and doors that sit in direct sunlight. It has a satin finish and a range of ready-mixed traditional colours with a semi-transparent finish allowing the beauty of the natural timber grain to show. It is a medium-build top coat and is thus named as it contains UV light absorbers that ‘filter’ the sun to stop it from reaching the timber.” 

“It is used as a system with a base coat of Cetol HLSe. The Cetol Filter 7 was chosen as the top coat, in this case, to further strengthen the specification and life of the application due to the large amount of sunlight that these windows, doors and uprights are subjected to,” Mr McLean said.

Cetol Filter 7 can be applied onto previously coated timber, however, its industry-leading transparency means it is excellent on new timber as well. In this case study the timber was a reconditioned cedar and the product was brush applied. With care taken to build up the film on the edges to ensure maximin durability.

Cetol HLSe was used on the timber around the pool and decking as it has a low-build finish and allows for easy recoating. If coatings with a film build are used and not maintained then there is a risk that the film build will compromise over time – this means peeling and uneven weathering. 

The project required a coating that was easy to re-coat with a low lustre or more natural look, therefore Cetol HLSe was the product of choice. Its colour range also meant that there were nine ready mixed options to choose from, plus a further 60 shades that could be mixed to order. 

The Cetol Filter 7 Plus complimented the Cetol HLSe finishes providing a premium finish on the joinery, and helped accentuate the joinery when paired with the Cetol HLSe on the decks. 

“Given the large amount of timber present on the property, there could be no compromise when it came to choosing finishes that would last the test of time while also providing a high-end finish,” Mr McLean said.

The right tools for the job

Using the right tools for external and outdoor projects is especially important as there are additional factors to consider, including larger and higher surfaces and different textures than what are found indoors.

Monarch is renowned for its handcrafted paintbrushes and continues to drive the evolution and development of the paint accessory market. As such they are well-prepared for the increased demand in external projects this summer.

“Products suited to furniture restoration, decks, render, bricks and driveways are going to be in high demand. Most definitely our outdoor and exterior painting accessories [will be prioritised] as people will take full advantage of the warmer, drier weather to paint outside,” Brand Ambassador Mark O’Connor says. 

Products such as Monarch Woodcare brushes are expected to be among those that customers reach for this summer.

“Monarch Woodcare brushes are ideal for all interior and exterior timber care projects such as furniture restoration, decks and trim. The unique blend of natural and synthetic filament is designed for use with all timber oils, stains, and varnishes for an excellent finish with no brush marks.” 

Additionally, Monarch’s decking kits will also be highly sought after for those DIY jobs, giving customers confidence because all products are available in one kit.

“The Monarch Woodcare Decking & Stain Applicator Kit 7PCE is the all-in-one decking kit that includes all the accessories your customers need to complete a decking project, from start to finish. The kit features a premium Australian lambswool applicator that provides a quality finish and great coverage. While the Monarch 75-millimetre brush will assist with applying coating to railings, balustrades and harder-to-reach areas,” Mr O’Connor says.

Ensuring customers have the right tools for outdoor projects is something Monarch strives for. Not only do they consider the quality of their products, but also the practical applications. This is evident in their products designed specifically for outdoor projects. 

Products that include the Monarch Render and Brick Walls Woven Polyester Roller Covers, are specifically developed for painting over rough and textured surfaces, such as bagged brick, renders, and driveways. Not only are they practical in application, but are also easy to clean and reuse for trade professionals or DIYers.