Elastomeric, Masonry, Warranties and other questions answered
Q. Currently I am looking at a job which will include the recoating of elastomeric on a masonry block wall. However, there are a few areas near the top of the wall in which the elastomeric is bubbling. The wall has a sheetmetal cap on top and the old paint job actually shows little sign of improper application. I can understand that pinholes may invite this trouble, but again everything looks good accept for the areas where the elastomeric has lifted from the surface of the substrate. Do you have any suggestions?
A. Moisture behind an elastomeric coating is not good. And it is going to find its way out if its trapped. However, you brought up the issue of the metal cap on top of the wall. Even though this cap is designed to direct water away from the block, heavy rain complemented with heavy wind can force water up behind the metal cap. If the water can find unprotected or uncoated block wall, it will soak in and migrate downward. Once warm weather occurs the wall heats up and the trapped moisture perspires; causing the elastomeric to lift so the water can escape. One great way to resolve this potential problem from recurring is to run a bead of elastomeric caulking up and in between the flashing and masonry so moisture cannot blow up behind this protected area. A high quality elastomeric caulk is recommended for this type of work.
Q. Is a “One Year Warrantee” standard for general interior or exterior paint jobs, or is that not enough time? Can I sell more jobs if I offer customers an extended warrantee on my work, or is this asking for trouble?
A. A one year warranty on the quality of your work is an acceptable standard. However, provided you do quality work, warranties can become an excellent part of your sales efforts.
We asked Dave Martin of Dave’s Painting Co. and the web master of Painter's Chat Room for his opinion. According to Dave, “a two year warranty seems to be normal in my area. I think it does help to sell a job. We actually offer a five year warranty with our company’s deluxe paint job. We use premium paints and list all the things we will do such as applying 50-year caulking, etc. A standard two year warranty covers contractor grade paint and 35-year caulking. By using the good, better, best approach in selling, you don’t loose the price shoppers, yet you can still sell to the quality minded customers at the same time.”
Q. On a large remodel we are currently painting, I was asked if I could match the dark color on old oak wood flooring to some new oak flooring. But matching the deep, dark color of the new flooring to the old is a bit tricky. I am having trouble getting oil-based semi-transparent stains to absorb into the summer grain, those areas where the wood is super hard. The stain just doesn’t soak in and stay there. Any thoughts?
A. Getting oil-based semi-transparent stain to penetrate that summer grain is a losing proposition. The only way you can get that deep dark rich look is to use a dye stain. Unlike other methods for coloring these dense wood surfaces, dye stains penetrate the wood surface and do an excellent job of creating an even and consistent color. Dye stains can also be thinned and/or mixed with other dye colors to give you just the color you’re looking for. Dye stains are, however, getting harder and harder to locate simply because the VOC emissions are higher and are a greater health risk to you. So make sure you provide yourself with adequate ventilation and use a respirator with the appropriate filters when working with this type of product.
Dye stains can be found at Sherwin Williams Stain Centers or other authorized distributors. Dye stains are primarily used in job shops where the higher VOC emissions can be controlled, so you may have problems getting your hands on the stuff.