Does your siding look like any of the pictures below?  Premature fading is very common in homes with rich colors, paint with flat sheen or installation of cement siding such as James Hardie.

Why does this happen?

Color Selection – Rich colors such as red, yellow and blues absorb more UV rays.  The absorption of UV rays break down paint pigment causing it to fade.

Flat Sheen – Flat paint will absorb more UV rays causing pigment to breakdown.  Sheens such as low lustre, satin, etc. have a protective clear built into the paint reflecting UV rays slowing down pigment degradation.  Downside to a higher sheen is it will show more imperfections in siding and walls.

Cement Siding – If the cement siding manufacturer has not been properly neutralized the alkalinity of the cement siding prior to installation it can breakdown pigments causing premature fading.  

What is the best solution?

Once the paint pigment has faded and broken down re-painting is the best solution.  The steps below help prepare faded paint as well as help prevent premature fading.

  • Pressure Wash Siding – Faded colors often times leave a chalky residue behind.  This chalky residue creates an unwanted barrier between a new coat of paint and your siding.  Pressure washing will help to remove contaminates including dirt and chalky paint.  However, it likely will not remove ALL chalky residue.
  • Apply Masonry Primer – A masonry primer such as loxon conditioner has two key benefits.
    • Masonry conditioner soaks into chalky surfaces locking them down to the substrate so a new coat of paint adheres properly. 
    • Neutralizes elevated PH that occurs in cement.  As previously mentioned, an elevated PH will break down pigment much faster than a substrate neutral in PH.
  • Select Light Paint Colors – Blues, reds and yellows have their place and they can work really well on some homes.  The caveat is the color wont last as long so if color retention is your priority try to stay on the lighter side when selecting colors.
  • Paint With Sheen – The sheen in low lustre or satin paint will reflect UV rays slowing down pigment degradation.  Sherwin Williams recently released a low lustre sheen for their exterior Duration paint.  Its an excellent choice for cement sided homes.  Picture here represents a home painted in Duration low lustre.

Home painted with Duration low lustre sheen

Video: Applying Loxon Conditioner