Bauer Construction’s Exterior Paint Guide

If you’re looking to repaint the exterior of your home, garage, or business, first you’ve got to know some basic about exterior paint. We’ll tell you the kinds of exterior paint, what to look for in a quality paint, how to choose the right finish, and throw in a few pro tips as well.

Types of Exterior Paint

  • Water-based (latex)

Dries much faster and cleans up much, much easier than oil paint. More durable than oil in areas with extreme variance in temperature and climate.

  • Solvent-based (oil)

Once you’ve used oil, you can’t go back. Water-based paint can’t be painted over water-based paint because it will begin to peel.

Qualities to Look for in Your Paint


  • Blister resistance

Excessive rain can cause blistering, when water works its way between the surface and the paint and causes bubbles.

  • Chalking resistance

Chalk-resistant paint will not develop a white powdery substance on its surface after the binder degrades.

  • Color retention

Color retention is determined by a paint’s ability to retain its vibrancy as it’s pounded by sun, wind, and rain.

  • Hiding power

Paint with strong hiding power is able to conceal the color of the surface when it is applied. Paints with less hiding power require more coats of paint, and therefore more money.

Choosing the Right Paint Finish

  • Gloss

By far the toughest, most resistant paint out there. Good for places that see lots of contact, around doors and windows.

  • Flat

Good for vinyl and aluminum siding, especially when it’s slightly scratched or dented.

  • Semi-gloss

A durable and easy-to-clean paint with less shine than gloss paint. Good for nearly all kinds of surfaces.

  • Satin or low-luster

Has a moderate sheen and is also easy to clean. Best for siding that’s in good shape.


Don’t forget the all-important step of priming. Primer is white paint helps exterior paint stick to the surface of your home, giving a more uniform appearance that also lasts longer.  It also helps to cover up the previous layer of paint or the building material so you don’t have colors blending.

Pro Tips


  • If you’re looking to change color, buy a small quantity first and try it out. Paints react to different surfaces in different ways, so it’s best to see how it will look on a small section of your home before committing to the whole thing (exterior paint isn’t cheap). Let it dry a few days then decide if you want to use it for the whole house or not.
  • Reduce harm of toxic chemicals by choosing a low-VOC exterior paint.


If you have any questions about exterior paint or any other interior or exterior projects, call or email us at Bauer Construction. We do it all, from rehabilitation and remodeling to handyman work. Call 847-553-5331 and ask for Jeff, or shoot us an email at

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