How to Caulk Properly
Everything around us is constantly moving and your walls for example are no exception. Prevention control is a great concept to keep in mind when thinking of the different weather conditions slowly taking a toll on your home. Simple and sometimes inexpensive steps such as a good caulking job can make a great deal of difference. Caulking helps seal cracks and joints inside or outside of your home, the same cracks that if let be, will allow internal moisture to accumulate and may just be your home’s potential worst enemy. Water seeping to the inside of walls and other small spaces regardless of how small it may be can lead to bigger more costly problems not to mention the seemingly hidden mold build up.
A few things to keep in mind:
- May be used on ceilings, walls, door frames, crown moldings, baseboards, and many places in kitchen and bathrooms
- A good caulk job must be allowed to dry completely in order to function at it’s maximum capacity.
- Usually takes about half hour to 45 minutes to dry depending on the size of the gaps
- If caulk is not let to dry completely, the paint peels right off, bubbles form, caulk cracks and/or shrinks.
- Caulk gun (try a drip free caulk gun for easier application and better precision)
- Wet rag
- A pair of gloves
- Paint thinner
- Metal scraper
As with many other things there are different levels of quality. Good quality caulk like Alex Plus reduces the possibility of loss of adhesion. Some offer a guarantee, but Alex Plus offers a 40 year guarantee!
Proper surface preparation is essential to the beginning of most of our projects:
- Scrape old and damaged caulk with a metal scraper, a razor blade may also be helpful.
- Sand necessary areas to achieve a smoother surface area.
- Primer may be necessary in order for caulk to create a stronger bond and prevent loss of adhesion. Prime areas to be caulked and painted.
- Mount caulk onto caulk gun making sure inner seal is punctured.
- Go ahead try a few practice lines. Although it is ideal to draw a straight line, the most important thing is to try to keep the bead of the caulk to a consistent size.
- Using gloves! dip finger in paint thinner and smooth out caulk, this results in a smooth, shiny finish. I prefer this over a cornered tool because I feel as if I have more control over the thickess of caulk I am leaving behind. It also leaves it super shiny!
- Use wet rag to straighten lines this is to be done while still wet, once the outer layer of caulk starts to harden, it will be too late and will have to start over.
Sunwest Painting offer caulking as one of our services, click here for more information.