One of the great things about learning the different materials, products and techniques that allow you to paint or coat a variety of surfaces is that you gain options. What do I mean by this exactly? For example, your garage door is a huge part of your home. Not only does it allow you entry and exit to and from your home it also stores important household items, tools, your vehicle, etc. Purchasing a new garage door can often be a huge expense, especially if the door is not in need of replacement and it’s solely for cosmetic purposes such as increasing the overall curb appeal of your home. Garage doors can be made out of different materials such as wood or metal but the great thing is that they can be painted! In fact, you can even paint your metal garage door to look as though it is wood with a fine woodgrain finish!
Painting Your Metal Garage Door With Woodgrain Finish
Prepping- First and foremost before starting any painting project you will want to make sure you have made adequate preparations. You will want to remove any old or existing paint which may also entail a bit of sanding to remove any rust from your metal garage door. Next, you will want to clean the door thoroughly with a low-pressure wash using a degreaser on any tough spots.
Repairs- After you have stripped the door back down to its basic state you will want to look for any repairs needed. Should there be large repairs that need to be done we suggest utilizing a reputable garage door repair company to make sure repairs are done to the best ability.
Prime Time- Priming the area you will be painting will make all the difference. You can find a metal primer in either spray on our liquid form. Make sure when applying the primer that you do so evenly and thoroughly. Make sure to let it dry completely before beginning to paint.
Paint It- When you are ready to both prime your door and paint it is very important you choose the right time of day and also the right weather. Outside elements such as rain, wind, snow, and dust can have a huge effect on painting your door and its overall outcome. Another tip to keep in mind when painting your metal garage door is that you use the best paint possible. Acrylic latex exterior paint is the best paint to use. Should you choose to utilize a stain instead we suggest a gel stain in a matte finish when trying to achieve a wood look. When painting you will need to utilize the strie technique to create the wood grain look you are trying to achieve. It is also best to use a brush on recessed areas and a paint roller on flat areas.
Dry Time- Remember that once you are done painting you must THOROUGHLY let the paint dry before opening or closing your door. While it may sound a lot easier said than done to paint your metal garage door it can be quite a challenge especially when weather elements come into play. Take your time for the best results!
Painting your metal garage door to resemble a wood door can be quite the project but it can also add a lot of curb appeal and value to your home. The key to properly painting surfaces such as metal or plastic is technique and having the right tools and materials at your disposal. Taking time to ensure the proper preparations are done can make all the difference when applying any type of paint or coating to alternative surfaces. Should your attempt at creating a “wood” look for your metal garage door go completely wrong there are some great actual wood garage doors on the market today!
Plastic has revolutionized the world, and thankfully, painting plastic has never been easier with the use of cheap spray paint. But if you want that finish to be durable and good looking, you should take some form of preparation so that the paint looks as best as possible.
Choosing a Paint
This may seem like the easiest part, but one thing you need to look out for is to make sure that your paint allows you to paint on plastic. Most spray paints you buy from a hardware store should be all good. The other thing you need to check for is if the spray paint needs a primer. Lastly, before you leave the store decide if you want to buy any paint sealer to give your paint an extra layer of protection. Now you’re ready to paint… well almost.
The first step is to clean the surface, don’t use any strong solvents like acetone or brake cleaner as plastic usually dissolves in solvents like this. Rather just use good old dish soap and elbow grease to get much of the dirt off. Now take high grit sandpaper and rub it gently across the surface just to create a surface that is more acceptable to paint. Don’t cause any gouges or dents in the plastic as this will ruin the piece and you will have to start over.
If you have a separate primer, then apply it evenly across the whole piece, remembering to stay an even distance at all times to prevent pooling or splotches that will have to be reworked. Now next is the part where you use the same techniques to apply it as the primer. And if your spray paint doesn’t need a primer, then you can just start spraying. Keep the same techniques in mind when painting though. You will need multiple coats and maybe even multiple cans depending on how big the piece is. Remember to let the paint dry before starting a new coat. Once you are done let the paint dry completely. If you decide to put a sealer on then spray it on the same way you did with the paint. This time you only need one coat. And boom, you’re DONE!
Powder coating is a new form of treating metal and has gained popularity over paint in the last couple of decades due to its environmental friendliness and its superb durability. However, many don’t know how they are able to spray a powder onto metal and then have it turn into a solid coating.
Prepare Metal Surface- If your piece already has a coating, then you will need to remove it before powder coating. Use a sandblaster to try and remove any coating until you’re down to the bare metal. The next step for powder coating has the same preparation as other surfaces. Soak or brush the metal with a strong solvent like acetone to clean any contaminants that may not allow the powder coating to stick.
Coat the Metal-Next, you will need a powder coating gun. Beginner guns are available for less than $200. This is a special tool that electrically charges the powder and then propels it onto the metal surface. You will also need an air compressor to help propel the powder. Due to the charge on the powder it will stick and spread evenly across the whole metal surface
Cook the material-Now for the final step, you need to carefully transfer the powder-coated piece into an oven and let it cook at 350-375 F for 10-15 mins. If the object is small enough you can use a conventional oven, but make sure to never cook normal food in it again. Because the curing process releases toxins that will be cooked into your food the next time you use it. So in actuality, you may as well add an oven to the list of things needed to buy.
Powder coating is one of the easiest things to learn how to do. The only problem is having to buy the equipment and materials to do it. Although it can quickly pay off, setting yourself up with the right equipment, tools and materials to powder coat is not cheap. It is, however, a great investment for those looking to utilize powder coating long term.
One of the great things about paint and coating alternatives is they can both be utilized for repairs or protection on different surfaces. What exactly does this mean? For example, many of us know that epoxy can be used as a type of overlay on our garage floors, restaurant kitchen floors, and basically any type of concrete floor in commercial and industrial spaces. It helps to enhance durability and protect floors, especially in high traffic areas. Another example is the use of Polymer coatings which can be applied to metal surfaces to offer corrosion protection.
What about a coating that can help repair your hot tub?
Believe it or not, there is a type of paint coating that can be used for just this purpose! While hot tub repair can be a serious matter where you need to seek the help of a professional, using an epoxy pool paint can aid in minor surface scratches and cracks that may eventually lead to more serious repairs.
What is epoxy pool paint?
Epoxy pool paint is a solvent-based paint that offers protection and resistance against chemicals, stains, and abrasion. It is best used on fiberglass, gunite, plaster and concrete surfaces. With a lifespan of up to 8 years, epoxy pool paints offer a great solution to minor repairs that need to be done in both your pool and spa. With a satin-like finish, it also helps to renew the look of your spa or hot tub, giving it a clean polished look.
What are the benefits of epoxy pool paint?
Adds strength to fiberglass pool/spa structure
Creates nonporous surface
Enables algae growth
Reduces the use of chemicals
Seals interior & prevents leaks
Makes Cleaning/Maintenance easier
Should you experience surface cracks on your hot tub it is important to address these cracks sooner rather than later. Small cracks in your acrylic shell can be repaired in 1-2 hours with epoxy pool paint and a couple of inexpensive tools you already may have. If the cracks in your spas acrylic shell go left unrepaired, deeper damage can occur which can spread to the layers beneath your spas shell which encourages internal spa damage. By utilizing epoxy pool paint you can help to both repair and strengthen the surface/shell of your hot tub adding years onto its lifespan while also saving money on repairs that could have been prevented.
What you will need to apply epoxy pool paint to your spa:
Acrylic Repair Kit
Hot Tub Cleaner
Drill & Bits
Epoxy Paint of course!
When choosing an epoxy paint for your spa it is important that you speak with a professional on the best paint to use for your type of hot tub. It is also important to make sure you are choosing a high-temperature paint that is able to withstand the heat and protect your spa to its full capacity. Epoxy pool paint is a great coating alternative to help protect your spa and fix minor repairs. Should you suspect that the cracks or damage go deeper than your spas shell, it is important to call a professional hot tub repair service for the safety of yourself and your spa!
Paint is one of those things that need a lot of prep to make sure it bonds correctly with the surface you are applying it to. In fact, many say 90% of the work is prepping the surface and the other 10% is actually painting. If you mess up it can lead to an unappealing look that will cost a lot of time and money to redo and repair.That being said, there are a few chemicals you can use to help your paint stick to wood, metal, or plastic to make sure the paint will last a long time and won’t chip or peel.
Acetone, Denatured Alcohol, & Mineral Spirits
These chemicals can be used on plastic or metal but are not recommended for wood as it will dry out the wood or damage any finish that is already on there. It is a powerful cleaner so be sure to apply carefully as it will quickly dissolve any paint quickly. These chemicals also evaporate quickly so it’s not best for large jobs. And don’t use these chemicals without proper ventilation as the fumes it emits is not good for your health. All 3 of these chemicals are easily found at all hardware stores.
This chemical is the one used by the pros and is very good at cleaning dust off the surface to prep them for painting. It is mainly used for painting walls but can be used on almost any surface. Like acetone, it is a strong chemical degreaser so any previous paint or finish will be ruined if they come in contact. Also, take proper safety precautions as it can cause skin and eye irritations. You can also pick this up at any hardware or. paint store. It will usually come in powder form which you then will mix in water for the desired concentration.
This is an easy DIY solution that you can do to quickly clean your surfaces for better paint adhesion. This is the best one for wood as other stronger cleaners will damage the wood. It is not that powerful so if you need to remove the paint it will take a lot of scrubbing or even a more powerful cleaner to rinse off. But obviously, soap is the easiest, safest, and cheapest option on this list.
Painting is something that can easily be done by yourself as long as you take the necessary precautions for safety and thoroughly clean the surface with the right chemicals to make sure the paint not only looks good but lasts a long time as well.
Before plastics and polymers, people used wood, steel, and other natural materials to create things like baskets, cabinets, and other components. But today, you can’t go anywhere without finding polymer parts. From your car to your computer to almost every aspect of your life, polymers have been able to change the world!
What is a polymer?
Polymers have always been around us, such as natural rubber, but in just the last century great advancements have been made in producing all sorts of man-made polymers with different properties to allow for such great advancements in recent years. A polymer is just a long chain of repeating molecules that is a staple of biology. Made of things like carbon, nitrogen, oxygen, and hydrogen, these simple molecules can do amazing things.
The Use Of Polymers
The various properties possessed by these polymers is insane. You can have elastic polymers, you can have ductile polymers, brittle polymers, and so on. It just depends on the task you need the polymer to do. Another benefit is that polymers can be made at a significantly lower cost than metal or wood products allowing for everything to be made even cheaper. On top of that, polymers are lighter than wood or metal, making things like cars lighter and improving fuel economy. However, polymers aren’t perfect as many man-made polymers are made from crude oil which isn’t good for our environment and isn’t limitless. These polymers are hard to dispose of as they take forever to decompose. Some of our plastic ends up in the ocean which ends up damaging the local wildlife there. So while plastics can be used effectively, people have to take care to throw away many plastic components, as most plastic products can be recycled and reused, limiting our impact on the environment.
Some of the amazing products that have been developed thanks to polymers:
Kevlar Bulletproof Vests
Fire Resistant Suits for Fireman and Racer drivers
As we talk about different paint alternatives and coatings we discover the variety of options that are out there for all types of materials. In fact there are coatings and paint alternatives for aluminum, plastic, wood and even concrete. Concrete overlays and coatings have become increasingly more popular and have even become decorative and can change the look and design of your concrete flooring! But concrete overlays don’t stop with just decorative effects and enhancement for concrete they also come with a number of other benefits. A professional deck & concrete overlay company in Arizona provides great information on just how great floor coatings can be. Being that they are based in one of the sunniest states with temperatures that reach into the 100’s they are experts in just what concrete overlay’ can do for your concrete!
Concrete Coatings & Overlays
What Are Coating & Overlay’s Made Out Of?
Coatings and overlay’s are made out of a chemical compound called a polymer. Overlay’s are made of a combination of polymers that fall into 4 categories: Epoxy, Urethanes, Polyureas and Acrylics. Professionals often try to create different mixtures of these polymers to add benefits such as lower VOCs which can be harmful to both people and the environment.
What Concrete Surfaces Can Overlays Be Applied To?
The great thing about overlays and concrete coatings is that they can be applied to MANY surfaces such as:
Pool Decks & Areas
Commercial & Industrial Spaces
What Are The Benefits Of Concrete Overlays?
There are a number of benefits of having a concrete overlay done in either your commercial or residential area. Not only are overlays cost friendly they can also improve the appearance of older concrete, add a cooling effect, they are extremely durable, can be decorative and there is little downtime after having an overlay done!
What Kinds Of Overlays Can Be Done? The great thing about overlays is that they come in different colors, textures and designs. You can make your concrete appear to look like wood, brick, tile, pebble and stone to name a few.
Can An Overlay Fix Old Concrete? While an overlay may not be able to fix older concrete they do go a long way in helping to cover discolored, cracked, worn and old. Adding and overlay is also a lot cheaper than pulling out your old concrete and replacing the floor with something new. Want to go for a wood floor look in your home or maybe flagstone by your pool? Simply have a concrete overlay added and you have the look with less down time, renovation and a lot less money!
Concrete coatings and overlays are a great idea and cost friendly when revamping the look of your floors, decks and patios. With so many decorative options to choose from there is an overlay that is right for you and your vision. Talk to a reputable flooring and coating expert about what you are looking to achieve and also don’t hesitate to ask about a polymer hybrid that is lower in VOCs and is friendlier to both the environment and the population!
Paint has been a marvel in our world, from bringing colors to the first ever civilizations to now decorating our homes and cars, paint has been able to bring not only color but a feeling that creates a strong emotion. Just think if Ferrari’s weren’t painted in the vibrant red, some of the personality of the car would be sucked from it just by removing its paint. However, paint is not necessarily the best thing for our ever fragile environment. While our paint doesn’t contain lead as it did just a few decades before, paint today releases harmful chemicals that is not only poisonous but can also hurt the surrounding environment as well.
What’s So Bad About Paint Today?
Paint today is full of chemicals called Volatile organic compounds (VOC’s), these chemicals are most dangerous when the paint is wet and is freshly applied to a surface. It releases these chemicals to the nearby environment which is why ventilation and some form of protection against the fumes is necessary when painting. Otherwise, you will experience a range of symptoms from skin irritation to nausea and dizziness. Thankfully after a few hours your house will be safe from these VOC’s and you won’t need to wear a ventilation mask everywhere you go. But, even after your house is ventilated the environment still has to take some damage from these VOC’s. VOC’s are able to form ozone under the right conditions. And while ozone is necessary in the stratosphere to block the sun’s UV rays, here on ground level in the Troposphere Ozone it is very dangerous as not only can humans not breathe it, but it creates a huge amount of smog which is not safe for your health.
So What Can I Do?
So, if you are in the process of repainting your house you can actually skip all of the harmful paints that are out there. Instead, you can use low VOC or even no VOC alternatives that are safer for you and the environment.
Low VOC’s Paint
Contains less than 50g of paint
Water based instead of oil based
Offers as many colors as traditional paint
Can contain other chemicals that aren’t safe for you
No VOC’s are emitted
Offers just as many colors as normal paint
No paint odor
Not as versatile as normal paint
Can contain other harmful chemicals
Since the first caveman painted on the wall with blood, humanity has been infatuated with painting as it brings that extra life that can make a house feel like home. However, with recent scientific developments, humanity has been able to remove lead from many products including paint and gasoline. But, now humanity’s biggest problem is the emission of VOC’s. While we are still working on electric cars, many do not concern themselves with low VOC paints when refurnishing their house. If you take the time to choose a low VOC paint or even a completely green alternative you will do a great help to improve the health of not only yourself and the people living in your house, but also helping the health of the environment.
Instead of going to your local hardware store for a can or two of spray paint, consider covering your aluminum or plastic in different more durable materials. While the materials may be a bit more expensive at first, it will prove to be money well spent in the long run as these coats will last a long time.
Aluminum & Plastic Coating Aletrnatives
Anodizing This first process applies only to Aluminum and is an electrochemical coating that forms a coating of aluminum oxide on the surface of the aluminum. Here are some general pros and cons
Can only be used with Aluminum
This is cheaper than most painting options
This coating cannot peel because its integral to the metal
The thicker the coating the longer the life of the coating
Poor chemical resistance but still better than pure aluminum (ie acidic rain)
You can paint or cover the anodizing with another form of paint or coating
Environmentally friendly as it emits no VOC’s and uses no heavy metals
A few colors available
Easy to scratch
Able to be done at home with the right chemicals and materials
No curing time needed
You can’t remove the coating
Powder Coating This process involves spraying powder onto the plastic or metal part and then melting and baking that powder onto the material coated. Here are some general pros and cons to powder coating
Multiple colors available
Most resistant to chemical and physical abuse
It can chip and peel, although not easily
More expensive than spray paint and anodizing
The coating is thick
Can be used with multiple materials
Hard to do it yourself
Short curing times
More flexible coating meaning its more durable with moving parts
Easy to clean off the powder and restart before you cure it
Paint Finally, the tried and true spray can. This involves spraying paint onto the metal or plastic and then waiting for the paint to dry or curing the paint in an oven. Here are some pros and cons
Easiest to do at home
Cheap for simple paint jobs although it can get really expensive with more complex jobs
NOT environmentally friendly as paint sometimes includes heavy metals and the propellants are usually hydrocarbons and curing releases VOC’s
Long curing times
Infinite colors available
This has the weakest chemical and physical resistance
Only thin coatings allowed otherwise paint will droop
Coatings can easily peel and chip
Easy to clean off and fix any mistakes
Anodizing is cheap and durable but can only be used on aluminum with limited colors and no re-do’s. Powder coating is expensive but offers the best durability with the most flexibility in terms of what it can be applied on and what colors can be used. Finally, painting is easiest to do, but has the weakest durability. Whichever coating you go for, you’ll have an amazing look to admire and protect your materials for years.