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Proper Surface Inspection – An Important Step to a Successful Commercial Painting Project

Posted by Kevin Hughes | May 19, 2017 3:37:00 PM

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A high-quality and durable paint job doesn’t happen by accident. In fact, research has recently revealed that 60% to 80% of premature coating failures are caused by poor planning combined with improper surface preparation.

One of the most important steps in the surface preparation process is the inspection of all the surfaces in need of painting before, during and after project completion.


To ensure effective and durable results, professional commercial painters Jacksonville fl, carry out surface inspections in relation to:

Weather Conditions

Surface preparation and coating application should be performed under optimal environmental conditions. To maximize the performance of paint systems, commercial painting contractors consider:

  • Temperatures – As a general rule, the primers and other coating systems specified as part of the surface preparation process shouldn’t be applied unless the manufacturers’ requirements for air and surface temperatures are met. The best air temperature for paint application ranges between 50°-85°F for acrylic latex coatings and 40°-90°F for oil-based paint.
  • Relative Humidity – In Florida, high relative humidity is one of the factors adversely affecting paint jobs. Relative humidity levels between 40% and 70% deliver the best drying conditions for coating applications. Preparing surfaces and applying paint when the relative humidity goes over 85% can lead to adhesion problems, which may cause bubbles or blisters to form on the newly applied paint film.
  • Dew Point – When the dew point is higher than recommended, condensation may form and get trapped behind the new coat of paint with no way to escape. This will eventually cause premature coating failure. To prevent condensation from forming, surface temperature must be around 5°F above the dew point.
  • Wind Velocity – In exterior painting projects, wind speed is important for two main reasons: 1) windy conditions can cause dirt, dust particles and contaminants to settle on newly painted surfaces; 2) high wind speeds can accelerate the evaporation rate of the solvent, causing water-based paints to dry too fast; as a result, hairline cracks and even complete failure of the paint system may occur.

Environmental conditions in coastal areas can change rapidly. To ensure a high-quality paint job, our commercial painters Jacksonville fl measure the temperature, relative humidity, dew point and wind velocity every four hours or more frequently when conditions are unstable.

Overall Surface Condition

Residues like dust, dirt, grease, oil, corrosion, chemicals and salts can react with the substrate or form deposits that might negatively affect adhesion along with the service life of paint films. For adequate surface preparation, commercial painters Jacksonville fl perform:

  • a visual inspection to assess the condition of all the surfaces in need of painting and identify potential water damage, fungus contamination and other problems that may jeopardize the outcomes of the paint job;
  • a lead paint test, which is typically performed in older buildings (learn more about lead paint here);
  • a water-break test to detect the areas contaminated with oil or grease;
  • a UV “black light” test to determine the presence of hydrocarbons.

Depending on the condition of the substrate, a commercial painting contractor can opt for a variety of surface preparation methods, ranging from pressure washing to sandblasting. Also, pretreating certain areas against problems like mold growth or corrosion might be necessary for the best results to be achieved.

As a reputable commercial painting company with more than 16 years of experienced in residential, commercial and industrial painting, Performance Painting Contractors can add visual appeal and value to any commercial property. Whether your project involves interior or exterior painting or both, please feel free to contact us today for a free consultation, superior customer service and last, but not least, professional workmanship.

Topics: Commercial Painting

Written by Kevin Hughes

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