painting Newsletter


September 15 2007 Painting Newsletter

Happy September the 15th!

I’ve gotten a few e-mails asking questions about two of the hot topics on painting: Bricks, and garage doors. So, I thought that I would share some of these with you:

Hi Mr. Sherry,

The exterior brick of my home is in a range of burgundy-brown colors.
While replacing my old wooden shutter and to my dismay, the prior owner
did a poor paint job and got black paint (stripes)on the brick.

1.) Is there a way to get this paint off - it looks like they used an oil
based black paint?
2.) Is there a way to "tea-stain" or somehow glaze the bricks (inc. the
grout) permanently?

A dark brown glaze (like you put on kitchen cabinetry for depth) is the
look I would like because I still would like to see the differing colors
of the brick and not just put a solid all over stain.

Thanks for the help!

Thanks for your e-mail, but unfortunately almost any kind of paint is near impossible to strip off of brick. The porous nature of bricks, combined with the length of time that the paint is allowed to cure on the brick, is what makes it near impossible to remove all traces of paint.
If you do want to try to get some of it off, you can apply a strong chemical stripper, like Strip-eze, to the paint; let it sit for a half hour (making sure that the stripper stays wet); then use a strong pressure washer (2,400 psi or stronger) to blow off the stripper/paint. It won't get it all off, but it make it less noticeable.
To "tea-stain" the bricks and grout, you will need to mix up an oil wash; take a good quality, low luster exterior oil paint, in any color that you wish to use, and mix it 40% paint to 60% mineral spirits. I would use an airless sprayer, like a Wagner, to apply the oil stain evenly. Just make sure that you cover all plants and concrete surfaces and mask off all paint surfaces, as it will get messy.
Hope that helps.
Good luck, and best wishes,

And from another reader I received this:

Regarding the painting of bricks: When you say to use 15% mineral
spirits, does that mean to dilute the spirits to 15% and mix with paint or
use a 85/15 concentration of paint to spirits?

Thanks for your e-mail.
You will need to make up a mixture that is 85% paint and 15% mineral spirits.

And now for something completely different:

I have many working artists who contact me for tips and advice, and one of the most common requests is for info on pricing, especially garage doors:

I have admired your work for some time now. I too am a faux artisan in Texas.

I've just had a client request a faux wood garage door and I honestly have no idea what to charge her for this project. I did a wooden beam several years ago but I found out later through a reliable source I really underbid it.

If it would not be too much of an imposition could you give me an idea of how much you would charge? It's a double garage door with 32 panels with measurements of 16x7.

Thanks so much

Thanks for your e-mail.
I charge $1,000 per double door, if the door is flush panel, and $1,200 per double door is the door is raised panel, or has glass inserts. (Due to the extra making involved).
Hope that helps,
Good luck,

I hope that this will give all of you who are looking to do garage doors for someone some idea about pricing. Of course, you can always charge less (or more), and if you have to travel some distance to the job you will need to figure in expenses.
Oh, and these prices include materials (which is not that much).

So get out there, and have fun painting.

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