Tampa painter offers advice on choosing the best paint type

Tampa painter offers advice on choosing the best paint type

Jay Lewis began painting homes at age 15. After nearly 30 years of working in the industry, he opened JSL Painting Inc. in 2002. "Quality comes first. We take pride in our work."

How and why do you prepare a home for painting?

"You have to pressure clean, seal, prime, caulk and patch the home, and then you can paint it. If you don't do all of that, the paint's not going to adhere. It takes a day or two to prep, depending on the size of the house."

What's the best type of paint to use?

"I use satin finish for exterior, and we like to use Porter paints. It withstands the ultraviolet rays much better than anything else. Plus, satin is a lot easier to clean, and it won't get chalky in the sun, like a flat finish would. We use 100 percent acrylic only on the exterior of your home. Oil-based paint dries brittle and isn't going to breath and move like the acrylic paint."

What advice do you have for customers when they're picking a color for their home?

"Paint a sample onto your house, so you can get an idea what it's going to look like. The paint is going to change colors during the day and night. I also tell them to look at their neighbor's house and pick something different. You don't want it to look the same. Sand colors and beiges are the most popular. Whites are popular, too. We have people that want their houses painted like ranch houses, which are yellow and white, and that just doesn't look right. If they're going to make bad decisions, I'll step in and make suggestions to guide them."

What's the average size of the homes you paint, and what's the typical cost for a job?

"The average is probably 2,500 square feet, and price ranges from $3,500 to $5,500. Sometimes we charge by the square foot or by the amount of material. It takes about a week or five days, depending on the size of the house, to do a job."


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