What is blistering?

Bubbles or Blisters are caused by a loss of adhesion and lifting of the paint coating from the underlying surface. Water is the primary culprit behind most instances of blistering. Moisture causes loss of paint adhesion and bubbling. Blisters happen anywhere moisture is and it doesn’t favor interior or exterior.

How does blistering occur?

  • Heat blistering may happen when painting in direct sunlight on a surface that is too warm.

  • Moisture blistering can be caused by the migration of water through an interior wall to the exterior, thus pushing the paint off of the surface.

  • Application of oil-based or alkyd paint over a damp or wet surface.

  • Exposure of latex paint film to dew, high humidity, moisture, or rain shortly after paint has dried, especially if there was inadequate surface preparation and/or poor ventilation in areas such as kitchens and bathrooms.

  • Damp basements.

  • Moisture seeping into the home through the exterior walls.

  • Insufficient surface preparation, painting over a contaminant that the coating cannot adhere to.

To mitigate the effects of existing blistering damage, follow this 3-step process:

  • Remove areas of paint separation (blisters) with sanders, brushes, or scrapers.
  • Clean the exposed surfaces, sand them, and prime them with high-adhesive alkyd primers.
  • Once the primers cure, re-paint the previously-bubbled surfaces.

How do I prevent alligatoring in the future?

With the help of Fresh Paint we can prevent blistering.

Before Painting:

  • Ensure that wooden building components are well-protected from moisture.
  • Install water-vapor barriers on the interior surfaces of exterior walls.
  • Treat any exposed areas with water-repellent caulk.
  • Include adequate ventilation exhaust fans in high-humidity areas.

When applying exterior paint:

  • Apply paint when the outside weather conditions are temperate.
  • In hot weather, paint surfaces after sun-exposure, not before.
  • Avoid painting early in the day when condensation may form on fresh coats.
  • Ensure that glazing around windows and flashings are in solid condition.

As with many maintenance issues, knowledge and good products make it easy to keep any building looking attractive and Fresh Paint has the expertise to restore your project to its glory days!