Just as you don't typically paint your house in the dead of night, you also don't paint it in the dead of winter. The paint won't stand a chance below freezing temperatures.
But what is the best temperature for exterior painting?
Throughout history, the times of year that we paint our houses have typically been in the warm and dry seasons, and for good reason.
Paint has to cure by allowing all of the water to evaporate from it in order to create a good finish on your house. And the elements have a lot to do with how that happens.
Read on to gain some insight into the exterior painting window of opportunity.
What Is the Best Temperature for Exterior Painting?
While there is no hard rule for the best outdoor temperature for exterior paint, it is best to wait for warm weather, but not too warm.
In most northern climates, summer is the painting season, regardless of which color you choose.
In the south where summers tend to be hotter, that season can begin in the spring and stretch longer into the fall.
Exterior paint performs best within a range of temperatures. On the low end, it should be at least 50 degrees Fahrenheit out, and not drop below 35 degrees for a few consecutive nights.
On the upper end of the temperature range, it's tougher to say.
Exterior paint will dry more quickly in direct sun. So on a blistering 90 degree summer day, avoid working in direct sunlight as the paint will begin to dry before it is evenly applied.
Don't Paint After Late Fall
Autumn tends to be the cut-off time for ideal exterior painting temperatures.
While it can still be done with a watchful eye on the weather forecast, fall is generally not the best time to paint house exterior.
The cooler temperatures will prevent the paint from properly curing, but you may be able to take advantage of the early autumn days.
If the forecast shows that day and night temperatures will remain relatively stable around 50 degrees, then perhaps you can get away with it.
Avoid Wet Conditions
Finding the right temperature for exterior painting is not the only thing to consider. It is equally important to paint in dry conditions.
Paint should be applied only to a dry surface, so wait at least a day after heavy rainfall.
If your house exterior is made of a porous material such as exposed bare wood, or brick, you may need to wait longer for all of the moisture to evaporate.
Applying exterior paint wet conditions will lead to poor adhesion, and you'll be repainting your house sooner than you anticipated.
Proper drainage from your roof through your clean gutters will help keep your house and soffits dry.
Avoid painting in high humidity, and be mindful of dew formation overnight. Both of these indirect moisture formations can lead to a bad finish.
Brushes to the ready!
With the warm and dry months upon us, the ideal temperature for exterior painting is now.
Reach out to us with any questions you may have, and check out some of our other posts for ideas on how to spruce up your home's exterior.