After a conversation with a friend last night, I came to a stark realization about the painting of Vinyl or Aluminum Siding. Here's the realization, most people think they are doomed to replacing the entire product when they (1) don't like the colour anymore (2) feel the product is faded or (3) just think it's time for a change. You CAN paint this stuff, and not only can you paint it, it's actually a perfect surface to paint. The design of the surface (etched patterns) and the product (Vinyl or Aluminum) are both very conducive to allowing paint to bond extremely well, with little to no chance of it ever peeling. The bonus part is, it costs around 30-40% of total replacement cost. So, how do you do it, and what do you use. Here's a free lesson on the painting of Vinyl siding.
First, and most importantly, you need to wash the surface clean of all residue. Not only is dirt a factor here, but chalk is also. If you happen to run your hand on the surface of older vinyl siding, you'll notice a powdery residue on it. This is a result of the pigment in the surface failing over the years. It's important to get as much of this stuff off as possible before applying any paint. The easiest way to do this is with a high pressure washer. Preferably over 2500 psi. A solution to be used to wash the surface is commonly TSP, Bleach and detergent (dish soap). The TSP and bleach will act as harsh cleaners to get the dirt, grime, mildew and chalkiness off. The detergent basically serves the purpose of creating soap suds to allow the cleaner to be a little frothier to hold on to the surface. Once you have applied this and before the sun dries it completely, a pressure washer should be used to power rinse it all off. This should be done slowly to make sure to wash as many areas as possible. After the cleaning is done, a 100% acrylic latex paint should be used to paint all vinyl areas. An important thing to note is the colour you are thinking of using cannot be darker than the colour of the existing siding (moreso for Vinyl Siding). Vinyl siding is only rated for a certain amount of UV exposure and if you darken the colour, it will attract more UV rays and buckle the siding under the more intense heat. Talking to a trusted paint retailer directly will help you understand your options. Once this is decided, apply two coats in the shade (avoiding direct sunlight to slow drying times) and enjoy your new found siding. Your neighbours won't know the difference between painting and replacing. Unless they watched you do it.
If you don't want to leave your colour selection and the ultimate fate of your house to a big box store, call us, we'll help you along.