Painting the fence

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Painting the fence

Some projects around the home can be quite rewarding. A recent repaint of a picket fence became a small project that really had excellent results. It transformed the appearance of the house, making the whole property seem cleaner and fresher. But it also became one of those helpful training exercises for someone new to DIY, where the basic skills of painting could be practised without any undue repercussions if things didn’t quite go to plan.

The old fence hadn’t been painted for 10 years or more. A few minor repairs were required and it certainly needed a decent water blasting before we put the paint brush anywhere near the boards. A friend had recommended spray painting the fence, but we declined the suggestion. Anyone who has tried to spray paint outside, with the prevailing westerly, will be aware of the phenomena called ”overspray”. You also have to carefully mask areas such as the concrete base to avoid unwanted paint. We have a preference for the good old paintbrush: it allows you to work paint into some of the nooks and crannies, and there’s sometime slightly therapeutic about the flow of paint and a good paintbrush.

Several hours work and two coats later, the picket fence stands bright and white, and ready to face another 10 years of New Zealand weather.

Here’s our suggestions for easy fence painting.

1. Waterblast
Any material exposed to the elements will attract dirt, mould and moss. Clean it thoroughly with a high pressure water blaster. Our large trailer-mounted water blaster is ideal for preparing fences for painting. Go to http://bit.ly/UHH2jEdAXM

2. Repair
Carry out any necessary repairs by replacing such as replacing any individual pickets, or renailing (remember to use only galvanised nails). Punch any rusty nails and fill with putty to prevent rust spots forming.

3. Lay a ground sheet
It may be outside, but any spots of paint left on the concrete or mowing strip will probably bug you afterwards.

4. Start at the bottom on the reverse side.
One of the disadvantages of using a brush is the risk of applying excess paint and getting ‘drips’ or ‘sags’. Starting at the back allows any problems with drips to be addressed when applying paint to the front of the fence.

5. Practice good painting techniques
If you are using the project as a training exercise for a novice painter, show them how to apply paint to all areas and brush it out to give an even finish.

6. Apply two coats
Usually the first coat takes two thirds of the time, The second coat always goes on much easier and quicker, and it will help ensure the paint retains its fresh appearance much longer.



Please note: the information provided in these blogs is general in nature, and is true and correct to the best of our knowledge. It is not possible to cover every conceivable situation you may face when using our equipment. Always exercise care and use common sense. Avoid any situation which you consider to be beyond your capability. If you feel uncertain about any operating procedures after reading the information on our website or that related to our equipment, or any Worksafe guidelines, you must consult an expert before continuing. No warranty or guarantee is expressed or implied regarding the accuracy of the informaiton provided by Upper Hutt Hire. While every effort has been made to compile and summarise the important health and safety information for the safe use of equipment, the responsibility for its safe use lies with the hirer.


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