Then several things happened.
First of all, until late summer, all of the work I got was indoors. Since I was working steady, I wasn't complaining. I had sent out a number of bids for exterior jobs, but with the nice weather, I guess the property owners were enjoying being out in their yards without scaffolding and painters in their way.
Then fall hit, and it was a short fall, apparently in comparison to most years. As the temperatures began to drop, I had a number of owners call somewhat urgently requesting to get their projects done before winter. Much as I wanted to accommodate everyone, fall turned out to either be rainy with only a break of a day in between, or else unseasonably cool. And for exterior house painters, either one spells trouble, and both mean it's just about a sure thing you won't get your job done this year.
For those of you who were counting on getting your house painted or or stained before the end of the year, I'm sorry to have disappointed you, but the weather just didn't cooperate. For future reference, here are a few basic things about exterior painting and staining that depend on the weather.
- Several dry days in a row are necessary. I can power wash in the rain, but at least one day afterward is needed to dry the wood out, sometimes two if it's cool or cloudy.
- Once the wood is dry, a couple of days are needed to apply the paint or stain. If more than one coat is needed, extra time for drying in between is required (4-6 hours of temperatures above 40°-45°).
- Then another 4-6 hours at this temp is needed for the paint to cure properly. Darker colors may take longer to cure due to the tint content.
- Humidity level and shade affect drying times as well.
So for those of you who are disappointed I didn't get your job done before winter, I apologize - Bellingham is touch and go for outdoor painting in the fall. I'll get back with you in the spring, and I can promise you that you'll be a lot happier with the results when the weather warms up and the sun comes back around again.
Meanwhile, it's always a good time for interior residential painting, so give us a call to make an appointment before spring, because then hopefully I'll be back outdoors.