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Question DetailsAsked on 4/22/2013

Is it standard for a professional painter(s) to leave paint chips on the roof while the job is in progress and to paint over chipped paint?

The house is over 100 years old. Today the owner of the company reminded the painters to keep the paint chips cleaned up. They have done a mediocre job cleaning up the chips on the ground, but today we noticed a lot of chips on the roof outside the second story windows. Clearly there was no attempt to clean up. Also, in the contract, it is stated they will "remove loose/flaking paint" They have painted over large holes in the old paint and you can clearly see the impression of the old holes. I never expected they would simply paint over huge holes in the old paint. They claim that was not part of the contract as it is not loose/flaking and said what they have done is what is normally done. Is that right? Or should I be concerned? We do not know anything about painting and we told them this. Are they taking advantage of our lack of knowledge or are our expectations wrong? This is an insured company we discovered on Angie's List. Thank you!

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4 Answers


Professional painters put a tarp on the roof to catch most of the paint chips. Than use a hepa vacuum to clean up what misses the tarp.
You have all the control.. tell them you will not pay the last half of the deposit until it is all cleaned up to your approval. They should have had brains enough to do this without asking.


Answered 7 years ago by Guest_942500017


Sounds like they are taking advantage of you, and of course it was a big mistake to tell them you knew nothing about painting. They certainly should have either tarped to catch cleaning debris, or thoroughly washed off the roof to clean it afterwards (usually the former as they should have tarped it to protect agsaint any paint drips or spills, and paint chips generally require a pressure washer to remove, not just a hose).

The "holes" in the paint are NOT standard practice for competent painters. That being said, unfortunately, with the advent of spraying prep and tarping is now commonly 2/3 to 3/4 of the time for a proper paint job, so that is where a lot of painters slack off.

After stripping, scraping, or wire brushing any loose, blistered, cracked or peeling paint off, they should have sanded or abrasive wheel cleaned and then pressure washed the surface - both to provide "tooth" for the new paint to stick to, and to taper out a smooth transition between the "holes" and the surrounding paint. They should then have primed the "holes" with a primer (usually with an oil-based primer to level out the difference between bare spots and the surrounding paint that is not being removed) to prepare the then-bare wood to receive the finish coats.

They may be right in claiming the contract does not say they will do that, but it falls under the definition of a workmanlike job. Unfortunately, you say they are insured but are they bonded and licensed ? Their insurance covers you against liability if they get hurt or hurt someone on the job or cause damage, but does not cover the quality of the work. That is where the bond comes in. If they were licensed and bonded, you have several ways to pressure them - a bad rating on Angie's and with the Better Business Bureau, a complaint to the licensing authority (city, state, etc), and finally a claim against their bond to have the job redone right. Obviously, before you can do either of the latter two you will probably have to have a second opionion backing you up, say from a reputable home inspector or a retired painter or general contractor.

If they were not licensed or bonded but are required to be so by local or state law, then you would might excellent grounds for legal action against them.

Answered 7 years ago by LCD


I will give you a hammer to insure that the painters clean your yard totally. Did the contractor give you a Renovate Right booklet before he started work? No, is violation of Lead Safe Renovation federal laws. Did they test for lead paint and give you a check sheet of where and what they fournd? Same violation. If Both were done and your 100 year old home has Never had lead paint used, I would be suprised. The EPA can fine him up to $37,000 per day for violating the LSR requirements. Make him aware he is in violation and explain you want every last chip vacuumed up or Else.

Jim Casper LSR

ps see my blogs for ideas


Answered 7 years ago by jccasper


Ouch ! remind me to never get on JIm Casper's bad side - he plays for keeps. I did not realize the panalty had gone up to $37,000 per day - $20,000 was the last I remembered. (In our area lead paint removal has to be done by an EPA AND state certified lead abatement contractor, so I have not been directly involved in the penalty side for decades).

Answered 4 years ago by LCD

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