Fixing a Bad Paint Job

Old 01-24-02, 09:50 PM
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Angry Fixing a Bad Paint Job

When I bought my 50 year old house the people had just done a quicky paint job. Unfortunately, they were idiots and it appears that on the woodwork they used a latex paint over oil based with no prep or primer. Now only 1 year later the paint peels and chips off very easily and I want to add another coat over the top to change colors slightly and improve the finish. I have been told to lightly sand to remove the top layer-prime-then paint. I tried that, I am afraid that it is not doing a complete job, not to mention disturbing what is most likely lead based paint underneath, ( I have 2 small children).
Is there a primer or other product which will penetrate the top paint or maybe a stripper which will only remove the top layer. The paint is not in bad shape under this last coat. Cost is not the #1 concern as an easier solution would sure be worth some extra cost.
Old 01-25-02, 05:14 AM
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I do not have time to go into to it at the moment (getting ready for work ) but I at least wanted to leave you with these sites to chew on until I (or someone else) can get back to you.

Lead testing

You can read about lead paint hazards here

Old 01-25-02, 03:41 PM
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blairth emailed and wrote:

Thanks for the info, I sure wouldn't want to chew on that info...haha. I realize the dangers of lead and I am just going on the assumption that there is lead paint somewhere under the top coat, that is why I'm concerned about any chipping at all even though it is for now just the top layer which is new paint, ( I saw them applying it). I guess that is the good news. But the problem is getting off the new without disturbing the old!


It is ashame when people want to do something legit, to make a house look better for the people moving in, but, when the people don't know or don't do the proper research it only doubles the workload of the people that have to live with it. Or it could be that they knew, and just don't care.

Unfortunately this is a common and time consuming mistake, I am afraid there is no quik fix, priming overtop of peeling paint will not make it adhere, there is a cleaner (solvent) that will disolve latex paint without disolving the under coat of oil based paint, Goof-off, they do sell it by the gallon but it is not quik disolving and does take a bit of elbow grease, it is made for smaller "accidental" areas, not really for the removal of entirely painted surfaces such as this, is it worth a shot? Buy a small can and see, they sell it down to a few ounces, keep the mess off the carpets.

Paint strippers will take the paint off all the way to the wood, you will have to mask off the walls and cabinets, etc around the trim to be stripped. Read and follow the directions to the letter. Wash thoroughly afterwards, I suggest using TSP, letting dry completely, sand lightly but enirely, dust off, re-putty where needed, repair, reprime, sand lightly, dust off, re caulk where needed and 2 coats of paint. This will produce the best results, I have had clients have me do this.

If it were me and my house I would probably sand the dickens out of it, trying different grits starting with 80, sand and sand, maybe use a wire brush lightly in places, steel wool, putty knife, until all that will come off is off (not damaging the surface of the trim) I would then sand with a higher grit such as 150 or 220 to remove any sanding marks, remove the dust and paint it with a quality oil based paint. No promises that the latex that did not come off won't eventually, and it may not ever since it went through a vigurous attack and stayed on.

Don't forget to read about masking off, drop cloths and protection for lead based paints, use the proper dust masks and clothing. You can use wet/dry sandpaper and wet sand for little or no dust.

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