Wednesday, June 27, 2007

It's Usually Not the Paint's Fault

We have a customer who came to us with an exterior paint problem. She had her house painted last year, and earlier this spring (right after the first great weather of the year) she noticed the emergence of good-sized bubbles on the side of her house.

Naturally, it looked to her that the paint had failed. And not only that, but in less than 6 months from it's application. Imagine how frustrating that must be.

Bill, one of our senior staff paint experts went out to the jobsite with our Pratt & Lambert rep. to assess the situation. When they examined the underside of the bubble, they saw that they weren't only looking at paint, they were also looking at the PRIMER. In other words, the paint was doing its job very well and sticking like crazy, it was the primer that had released from the siding, not the paint.

This was a primer failure. To complicate matters further, the primer was a Sherwin Williams product, it did not come from our store. And worst of all - our records show that the painter purchased the paint at the end of October of last year. Meaning the paint wasn't applied until about the first week of November.

We are guessing that the primer was applied earlier in the season, absorbed some moisture before the paint film was applied - then on the first hot day of the year, the moisture steamed up and caused the bubbling to occur. Paint school 101: Water always will find it's way out.

So... is this an applicator failure or a product failure?