Sunday, April 19, 2009

It Seems I Have A Fan!

A short while ago a new follower arrived, and left a number of comments. It turns out this person was a former owner of the property, and apparently has some issue with the condition of certain elements, most notably the front porch. I sincerely hope this is not the same person who actually painted the front porch, of which I have taken a couple of pictures in its present condition.

The porch in 2001 when we bought the property had already lost a significant amount of its paint, both the top coat, and the primer coat beneath it, leaving the wood bare in large patches. The owners we purchased it from (Mike and Dana) had evidently slapped on a coat of paint to make it look presentable when they put the house up for sale in 2000, as I am assuming they had no incentive to actually do anything more, as they were not going to be living here anymore.

This begs the following question. Who painted the porch and why had it already peeled completely by the time Mike and Dana put the house on the market in the summer of 2000? I doubt that Mike and Dana painted the porch at all, except to cover up the mess when they sold the place. Was it painted a long time earlier, and they never got the time to do it properly? Or was it simply a poorly done job that deteriorated within a few years of it going on?

Perhaps the painter of the porch was Mr. Hilcox, who seems to take a remarkable interest in the peeling paint! He implies that I am being lazy in my efforts in maintaining the property, as evidenced by his blog (I have included it in my blog list in the right banner). I would then guess that the porch was painted sometime in the late 'eighties, up to the mid 'nineties, giving the lifespan of that paint job somewhere of the order of less than ten years before it completely failed. I do have some experience painting, and am of the opinion that a properly painted exterior surface should last in the order of 20 to 30 years, and the primer coat should never peel from the surface. Perhaps Mr. Hilcox's suggestion that I pick up a paintbrush to take care of the mess that I adopted is also telling: Wielding a paintbrush is the least important step in applying a long lasting, proper coat of paint. Far more important are proper stripping (with either mechanical or chemical strippers), and then properly cleaning and rinsing to ensure the wood surface is thoroughly prepared for painting.

I have estimated that 'painting' the front porch is likely an 80 to 100 man hour job, so at least two, if not three weeks to get it done right, so if the weather looks good in August, I will probably do it then. And then I will sit back, knowing that it will be about about 2032 AD before I have to sand and clean it, and renew the top coat again.