Dowd Restoration 5- Exterior Wood Restoration Myth #1- Anyone Can Do It

Updated: Feb 03, 2022

Let's start with a few questions that a contractor could ask or consider before estimating or starting your house.

The answer is that "anyone" can do it. On the other hand, only a genuine specialist can properly repair external wood. This article will debunk the idea that "anyone can do it" by describing the difficulties, the details necessary, what to look for in a contractor, and what an external wood restoration job entails in detail.

Let's start with a few questions that a contractor could ask or consider before estimating or starting your job.

  • What is the project's background? (For example, decks, fences, and wood siding.)
  • What is the current number of coatings of sealer or stain on the surface?
  • What will the new coating be called? Semi-Transparent, Solid, or Sealer (with or without a tone)
  • What are the distinctions between them?
  • Is it necessary to remove it and neutralize or brighten it?
  • What is the difference between stripping and neutralizing/brightening?
  • What happens if the stripper isn't washed completely?
  • What causes salt to develop on surfaces, and how may this affect the project?
  • Is it necessary to pressure wash it?
  • What nozzle tip size should I use?
  • What exactly is a tip?
  • What are the various application techniques and how do they differ?

This is just scratching the surface of the issues. You're probably already in over your head if you can't answer even one of these questions, whether you're a customer or a contractor. It requires much more than a pressure washer and a water supply to refinish external wood "properly." Actually, you're washing, stripping, or completing part of the surface preparation improperly if you're depending on the pressure of the water. In all honesty, you're probably scaring or harming the wood surfaces you're trying to repair. This business is sometimes referred to as "quick food drive-thrus." Consumers believe they often do not receive what they pay for. People pay "quick food" pricing to "fast food" contractors; therefore, this exists. A contractor's possession of a pressure washer does not imply that they are an expert in external wood repair.

The other side is that if you invested the money on wood siding, a deck, a fence, and so on, why would you trust just "anyone" to repair it? Furthermore, if you expect a contractor to show up and offer to repair your wood for less than $1.00 sq. ft., you will almost certainly get what you paid for... headaches, hassles, and disappointment. $3.00-$4.00 sq. ft. and above may not be out of the question depending on the preparation necessary, prior coatings, height of work, kind of finish coat to be applied, and other considerations. Failure to understand the consequences of failing to maintain your wooden house properly might cost you a lot more money in the long run.

Understanding the distinctions between wood kinds, coatings, chemicals, processes and techniques, cleaners, strippers, neutralizers, cob blasting, pressure washing, rollers vs. brushes vs. sprayers, and maintenance coats is only the beginning. To accomplish the work successfully, you'll need both experience and education. Let's have a look at the credentials and features of the contractor. Certifications, connections with manufacturers, distributors, franchises, businesses, or trade associations should all be able to demonstrate that the contractor has expertise in the trade. Courses and/or certificates are offered by the majority of respected firms and organizations.

A customer should feel comfortable inquiring about any of these in a contractor's past. Pressure Washers of North America (PWNA), stain and sealer manufacturer credentials or affiliations, the Better Business Bureau, a Chamber of Commerce, or any other means to identify that they are a "professional" with expertise in the trade are some examples of these. The look and demeanor of a competent contractor are equally crucial. Look for uniforms and logos on business cards, stationery, automobiles, and other objects.

The contractor that arrives at your house wearing the same clothes they slept in the night before, out of an old, broken-down vehicle or van with a pressure washer hanging out the back, is usually not someone you should employ. Don't be hesitant to ask questions such as, "Are you involved with any organizations?" "What are your qualifications?" "Do you or your firm have any certifications?" "What is your experience?" "What sorts of brands of coatings do you use and why?"

It takes a lot more effort than it seems to repair wood properly. Just ask anybody who has attempted to build their own deck or the person who spends an arm and a leg, time, and effort each year and still can't get it to look the way they want it to look. It's remarkable how much some people will pay to have a piece of interior furniture professionally repaired but not their bigger, more expensive outside wood. It would be similar to a fast-food restaurant providing a Filet Mignon steak dinner for $.99. You wouldn't go to a restaurant that serves fillet mignon for $.99 if you really wanted a delicious fillet mignon dinner. So, why would you expect a 1,000 sq. ft. wood restoration job to be completed for $200.00 to $300.00? It doesn't make any sense.

"Can anybody do it?" is, of course, the last question. Should "everyone" does it, though? Protect your investment by hiring a skilled contractor in your region.