Common Exterior Paint Problems

June 29, 2018

The paint job on your home’s exterior may last for at least five years. However, keep in mind that your exterior walls are exposed to various elements day in and day out all year round. Hence, it is not unusual for them to deteriorate sooner than expected, especially if the quality of the paint job is poor.

Naturally, if you want your house to keep looking exquisite and fresh, you need to know how to spot signs of wear and tear and fix them immediately.

What Are the Common Exterior Paint Problems?

Listed below are some of the exterior wall paint problems you may encounter as well as tips on how to fix them.


Over time, an exterior paint job is bound to fade, especially if it is constantly exposed to elements. However, certain factors can hasten this process. Using the wrong type of paint (interior grade or low quality types) on your exterior walls may lead to premature fading. In addition, some paint colours like shades of red and blue do not hold up well to UV rays exposure. Hence, they are more vulnerable to fading when used outdoors.

If the paint on your walls have noticeably lighten, it is best to repaint them. To prevent poor colour retention, ensure that you only use high-quality paint specially formulated for outdoor use. Furthermore, avoid colours which are sensitive to UV rays.


When paint decomposes, it turns into a chalk-like substance. This is why, you may notice spots on your walls with powdery material. Chalking is a normal and natural part of a paint job’s life cycle. But it can be problematic when it becomes excessive or severe as it can run off and stain other parts of your wall.

To fix this problem, you need to remove the chalk residue by scrubbing or power washing the surface. Then, let the surface dry and examine it if it still has a powdery substance. Remove any remaining chalk substance. Apply latex primer. Once dry, paint the surface with your chosen topcoat.


The presence of mildew, a fungus, on your walls can result in black, grey or brown spots. Feeding on the paint film, mildew grows in damp areas or those which receive little or no sunlight. Poor painting practices may also make a surface more prone to this fungus. For example, not using a primer on a bare wood surface before painting promotes mildew growth. Painting over an area with mildew also has the same effect.

If you have a mildew problem, it is important that you thoroughly clean the surface before repainting it. Wearing protective gears like goggles and gloves, scrub the infected area with a trisodium phosphate solution. Alternatively, you can make your own cleaning solution by mixing three parts water and one part bleach. Rinse the surface with water; then, wash it again with soap and rinse. Once the surface it dry and clear of mildew, you may apply the primer followed by the paint.

Peeling Paint

Peeling paint is a common paint problem. Poor adhesion and the presence of moisture are the usual causes of paint film separating from the substrate. With this problem, large sections of paint film may separate from the surface. The peeling may also be patchy which is often observed when the flaking is due to poor paint adhesion. Sometimes, the peeling manifests in the form of cracks on the paint film.

The first step to fixing a peeling paint is to identify the cause of the problem. Address the source of the moisture like leaking pipes or roof. Next, examine the affected surface. If the damage is severe – large sections have peeling paint, then you need to remove the remaining paint. In order to do this, you can sand it or use a heat gun if you are working on a large area. The heat gun can make you finish the job faster. Prep the surface, prime and apply a fresh coat of paint.

Seeing any of these common exterior paint problems on your house? Let our professional house painters help you fix them. Call us at 086 608 1817 / 085 139 0233 today!

Photo by Louisville House Painters Common Exterior Paint Problems