There are a number of reasons paint cracks and peels. The timing of the paint job is critical, as the temperature can’t be too cold or hot, and you have to check the weather forecast for wind and rain, as moisture and high humidity can lead to poor adhesion.

Other problems can have to do with a lack of preparation, such as not sanding, scraping old paint, or cleaning the walls before starting your project. Also, if there has been long-term moisture penetration, this can make your paint job an exercise in futility.

Yet another issue is for an older house that has had layers of oil paint applied and then the new homeowner chooses a modern water base paint. This post offers a further explanation:

Why Is My Paint Peeling? | This Old House

Peeling Paint


The problem can occur when an old house with multiple layers of oil-base paint is coated with a modern water-base paint, says Feist who headed the federal government’s house paint research program for 20 years. “The homeowners decide to upgrade and put on a good latex paint. But that last coat of a new type of paint can be sufficient to cause catastrophic failure, often right down to bare wood. “

Read More Here:  Why Is My Paint Peeling? | This Old House

The article went on to discuss how the chemicals in the paint are the base of the conflict. The two types of paint are oil and latex and they each have three main ingredients:
-Binder to make it stick
-Pigment for color
-Solvent to allow it to flow onto a surface

In the process of drying oil paint forms a tough plastic film where latex develops a flexible film, meaning they cure differently. Oil paint never stops curing, becoming harder and more brittle with time. Latex cures in a couple weeks and stays pliable.

So, the old saying “oil and water don’t mix” is a lot of the reason these two paints don’t play well together.

This video gives a quick description of why paint peels on the exterior of a house:



Again, inefficient prep and moisture are the most common culprits. Protecting areas with primer and caulking can prevent some of these issues.

Another important facet is choosing the correct paint for the surface. If you have wood siding as opposed to vinyl or hardboard siding, each requires different steps to success.

Cheap paint might save you money initially, but in the long run, you may end up having to repaint the area sooner than later. The next article provides tips on picking the best paint:

Pro Tips For Selecting the Best Outdoor Paint or Stain | The Family Handyman

Smooth Siding

The best paint for top-coating smooth siding (wood or cementboard) is 100 percent acrylic latex flat.Yellow Can of Paint

Acrylic latex resists the corrosive effects of sunlight better than oil-based paint. It lasts longer too. The labels on latex paints can be confusing. Top grades will say 100 percent acrylic latex to distinguish them from other types like acrylic latex or vinyl acrylic latex, which usually cost less and don’t perform as well.

Hardboard or Cementboard

The best protection for textured hardboard or cementboard is a high-quality primer and flat, 100 percent acrylic latex exterior paint.

Hardboard has a factory-applied finish, and each brand has specific painting instructions. Painting methods vary, so read those instructions. Usually a primer and two coats of 100 percent acrylic latex will do the job.

Read the full post here:  Pro Tips For Selecting the Best Outdoor Paint or Stain | The Family Handyman

Consult with an expert at a local paint store if you plan to manage the project yourself. If you choose to hire a Denver painting contractor, they will already have the background to know what works the best for how to prevent peeling paint.