Updating your home's exterior takes a lot of time and consideration, especially when doing exterior paint comparisons. When it comes to painting your home, you want to be confident that you're not only getting the color you want, but that it will still look the same after a number of years being exposed to the elements.
Comparing Brands of Exterior Paint
Enter any home improvement store and you'll see hundreds, if not thousands, of paint hues available and depending on which store you visit, your choices will differ. Some stores offer Behr or Olympic while another may offer Valspar, Glidden or other brands. Then there's Sherwin-Williams and their chain of brand-specific paint stores.
How can the Average Joe do a solid exterior paint comparison and feel good knowing he got the best value for the dollar?
How to Do an Exterior Paint Comparison
Besides a manufacturer's reputation for quality, when choosing the best paint for your home's exterior, there are a few things you need to keep in consideration:
- Color selection
- Paint can size availability
- Low VOC availability
When doing an exterior paint comparison, most people either go for the least expensive (thinking it will save them the most money), or the most expensive (thinking it's the best possible paint available). In reality, neither of these beliefs are true, but the old adage that spending more now will save you money later does apply to paint.
You want to avoid the less-expensive exterior paints because they are cheap for a reason. But, this doesn't mean you have to buy the most expensive brand available. Use the rest of the considerations to help you narrow down your selection, then fit the best match for your needs and your budget.
What does it mean when a super-expensive brand of paint says they offer a lifetime warranty on their paint? Unfortunately, it can mean a lot of different things to a lot of different people. Paint warranties typically only cover the paint itself, not the labor included in applying it, which is what really costs the most money. Very rarely will even the most expensive paint retain its full hue after a decade of being exposed to the harshness of the elements. Do you really think the paint manufacturer is going to supply you with new paint for your entire house if the hue diminishes after ten years? Before selecting the paint for your home's exterior, try to find out exactly what the manufacturer's warranty covers and what it doesn't.
When it comes to painting the exterior of your home, you really don't have a ton of color choices because many neighborhoods require the houses to be moderately hued. Tan, blue, green, white and brown are probably the most common colors, but you can make your home stand out from your neighbor's simply by painting it a variation of one of those colors.
Compare paint manufacturers to see which one offers a slightly different shade that you find irresistible. After all, you don't want the neighborhood association, or your neighbors, on your back for painting your home vibrant purple.
Paint Can Size Availability
If you're going to be using a lot of paint, and if you're painting the exterior of your home you will be, choose a paint manufacturer that offers the option of getting their paint in five-gallon buckets. This is not only a more cost-effective way of buying the paint, but you won't have to concern yourself with dealing with numerous one-gallon cans all over the place.
Paint luster is typically something one thinks about when painting the interior of the home, but some studies show that applying a different luster of paint to your home's exterior can change how it reacts to things like mold and moss growth. For instance, in damp weather locations, flat exterior paint is more prone to grow mold when compared with semi-gloss paints. Of course, before choosing a luster, always check with your neighborhood association to see if they approve the use of it.
Low VOC Paint Availability
VOCs (volatile organic chemicals) are found in most paints and can really affect people negatively when used inside. But, they have also been shown to affect air quality outside when high VOC paints are used to paint home exteriors. While high-VOC paints historically have shown to be the most resilient when used, modern varieties of paint featuring low VOCs have show to be comparably suitable.
Making Your Choice
Now you know what to keep in mind when doing an exterior paint comparison. Find the paint manufacturer that meets the greatest number of these concerns and you can't go wrong choosing the best paint for the outside of your home.