It’s a springtime tradition – take a look at that old paint job and think about how you can freshen it up.
Every homeowner has done this at some point.
But what happens when your old paint job is covered in chips and cracks?
At that point, it’s about a lot more than just painting over it.
You’ll need to make sure you properly prepare your surface for painting, which usually means you’ll have to scrape.
Scraping ranks just above sanding as the least enjoyable part of painting for most people, but it’s very important.
Taking the time to properly sand your project can make the difference between a finished project that looks great, and something you’ll have to redo.
We’re PurcellPro painters, a professional painting company in Willow Grove, PA, and today, we’re here to talk about scraping.
Gather Your Tools
Before you get started, like any job, it’s a good idea to have all the tools you’ll need.
First, start with a drop cloth or some other ground covering.
This way, you can quickly and easily clean up everything you scrape off the wall.
You’ll also need a 9 in 1 tool – if you’re not sure what this is, ask someone at the hardware store.
Get a carbide scraper as well, and a few replacement blades.
You can sharpen them as you go to get a bit more longevity out of them, but nothing beats a fresh scraper blade.
Finally, some painter’s tape.
Of course, you’ll need some sandpaper after the job is done as well – but more on that in another article.
How To Scrape Old Paint Away
Now that you have all the tools you’ll need, it’s time to get started.
Follow these simple steps.
1. Cover The Ground
You don’t want to have to clean up a bunch of paint flakes after you’re done scraping.
If you’re outdoors, you pretty much have no hope of doing so.
It will make your garden bed look bad, and isn’t great for the environment either.
If you’re inside, you can of course use a vacuum cleaner.
However, there’s no point in putting your vacuum through more wear and tear than it needs.
Grab an old bed sheet and lay it down – you’ll thank yourself later.
2. Scrape With The Carbide Scraper
This is where the fun begins.
Locate a point where you notice the paint is starting to peel.
Then, using your carbide scraper, begin carefully scraping over it.
Follow the wood grain, and don’t push too hard.
It’s a delicate balance – you want to push hard enough that the paint comes away, but not so hard that it takes some of the underlying wood with it.
This is a critical point – scraping too hard can leave you with damaged wood, and several more hours of sanding to get it looking good again.
If it doesn’t come off, forcing it won’t make a difference – just sand it down later.
3. Scrape With The 9 In 1 Tool
Now you might have noticed while you were scraping that it was difficult to get into corners and ledges.
This is where your 9 in 1 tool comes in handy.
Using the pointy edge, you can dig more effectively into the cracks.
Chip away all the paint that’s left you haven’t been able to reach.
This is also true of any concave or convex surfaces you’re dealing with – that’s two of its 9 functions.
Oh by the way, the other 7 things you can do with this tool are:
- Cleaning rollers
- Opening paint cans
- Closing paint cans
- Pulling out nails
- Setting nails to hammer in
- Spreading drywall putty
- Clean out cracks
Maybe we’ll write an article about that some day as well.
4. Come Back With The Scrapers, From Multiple Angles
Scraping with the wood grain helps you get rid of most of the paint that will come off more loosely.
It will also do it in a way that won’t damage your wood as much.
After all, when you scrape along with the grain, any marks that you leave will end up following the grain, so they won’t be as noticeable.
However, it won’t catch everything.
This is when it’s time to scrape at any angle you can find that will take the paint off.
Be even more careful than usual here.
5. Sweep The Surface With A Broom
Once you’ve scraped away all the paint you can, brush the siding off with a broom.
This will get rid of any leftover pieces that won’t come off.
After that, it’s time to sand.
Call PurcellPro Painters Today
Do you have a painting project you’d like some help with?
Just don’t feel like spending the entire day scraping your walls?
Call PurcellPro Painters today.