Tips for How To Fix Cracked Paint
Alligatoring, cracking, peeling, blistering, cratering—sometimes it seems like there are as many ways for your paint job to be ruined as there are types of paint. Cracked paint may occur because of incomplete prep work, low-quality paints, water damage, or simply old age. Whatever the reason, it leaves a rough, unpleasant wall. Fortunately, we have compiled our best tips for how to fix cracked paint.
Small Patches of Cracked Paint
The most common cracked paint issue you’ll see in your house is small cracks here and there or patches of small, spongy paint. Learning how to fix cracked paint of this type is simple; you won’t need to repaint the entire wall. Use a scraper to scrape off the paint in that area. From there, sand down any remaining loose paint, especially along the wall edges. Apply a layer of patching material. Allow this to dry completely, using a heat gun to speed up the process if you’re under time constraints. From here, use a fine sandpaper, around 220 grit, to sand down the area before applying your primer and paint.
When there’s cracking or alligatoring across a wide surface, it’s possible that the places that haven’t started cracking will begin to do so in the future. Because of that, it’s best to remove the paint completely and start fresh. In places where the paint is coming off in patches, you may be able to scrape large patches of paint off the wall at a time. Otherwise, you can utilize a mechanical sander or chemical paint remover.
As we’ve mentioned before on this blog, you should be aware of how old your paint is before removing it. If the paint job is from before 1978, the paint could have lead in it. Removing lead paint, especially with a scraper, can be hazardous to your health. Bring in a professional for this kind of paint removal.
Cracks Along Baseboards
You can fix cracks along the baseboard of a room with a caulking gun. First, use a fine sandpaper along the cracks, and apply painter’s tape or low-tack masking tape along the walls. When preparing the caulking gun for use, be sure to cut only a very small opening in the container’s tip. This will help you apply the material with precision and prevent you from using too much caulk. As you apply the caulk to the crack, keep a damp cloth with you to wipe up any excess as you go.
You can prevent future paint cracking when you first paint the room. Keep these principles in mind:
- Be sure your paint is compatible with the surface you want to paint.
- Remove cracked paint and grease before painting.
- Apply a quality zero-VOC* primer.
- Don’t overly dilute the paint.
- Avoid painting when it’s too hot or cold.
Quality paint is also key. And when you’re looking for paint that will look good and last, look no further than ECOS Paints.
Zero VOC - Conforms to CDPH 01350 (VOC emissions test taken at 11, 12, & 14 days for classroom and office use).