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How to Prevent Paint Fading Immediately on Southern Exteriors

calander Jun 11 , 2021 user-icon Nash Painting

Southern sunshine is a major perk of living in areas like Nashville, Franklin, and Brentwood, TN. Unfortunately, the same sun that brings you so much joy can also cause your property plenty of grief. The exterior of your home or business must soak in the sun’s rays on a regular basis. Over time, this ultraviolet (UV) radiation can cause your exterior paint job to fade and even peel away. You might not notice or care if your property’s paint job loses some of its color over time, but a faded exterior naturally decreases curb appeal and therefore lowers your property’s value. Additionally, a faded paint job indicates a more vulnerable exterior -- if you leave things alone for too long, you might end up having to invest in touch ups and repairs more than you’d like. No matter what, then, you should try your best to maintain the appearance of your southern property’s paint job.

Here are some tips for how to prevent paint fading immediately on southern exteriors.

Use High-Quality Exterior House Paint

First and foremost, always go with high-quality paint products for your projects. While premium paints are more expensive, they will save you time and money in the long run due to their increased durability. This isn’t to say that superior paints are immune to fading, of course -- every type of paint loses some of its color over time, especially when constantly exposed to direct sunlight. Still, quality paint products feature stronger compositions and therefore withstand various environmental pressures better than their counterparts. If you’re trying to prevent paint fading, don’t cut corners in this department.

Mind the Type of Paint You Use, Too

Quality isn’t the only factor that matters when selecting an exterior paint. There are, after all, many types of paint out there varying in composition, application, and so on. Likewise, exteriors can be composed using a variety of materials, such as wood, brick, stucco, vinyl, metal, and more. If you want your outdoor paint to maintain its color and overall integrity, you must select the optimal paint type for your exterior surfaces. For instance, elastomeric paints are usually recommended for stucco exteriors, whereas acrylic latex options are better for wood and vinyl; masonry paints should be applied to brick and concrete exteriors, etc. The better suited your paint is for a given surface, the longer it will last and the less prone to fading it will be.

Opt for UV-Resistant Products

Speaking of paint types, many paint products also offer special features for specific purposes. Some paints, for instance, contain additives to prevent and kill mold/mildew, other products are made for waterproofing, and other varieties help keep pests at bay. To prevent fading due to harsh sunlight, you’ll want to choose exterior paint products specifically designed to resist UV rays. UV-resistant paints (also called fade-resistant paints) and topcoats have reflective properties that cause the sun’s rays to bounce off the surface. As such, surfaces that feature UV-resistant coatings remain cooler and retain their color longer.

Choose Lighter Paint Colors for Exterior Surfaces

It might seem obvious, but if you don’t want your business or house exterior to lose its color over time, it’s a good idea to paint it with colors that aren’t prone to fading. Simply put, lighter colors don’t fade as much as darker colors because darker colors have more pigment and are more absorptive -- light colors simply have less to lose, plus they reflect light back. If you’re not certain about how to select exterior paint colors for your house or business, then you might prioritize lighter shades over darker tones for practical reasons. The one downside of choosing lighter exterior colors, though, is that dirt becomes much more visible by virtue of contrast. The trade-off is that you may want to wash your exterior more often when you choose lighter colors than if you stuck with darker shades.

Protect Your Property from Other Outdoor Threats

Though the sun is the main culprit for exterior paint fading, other environmental forces can diminish your commercial or residential exterior painting as well. Water, for instance, can stain your exterior and deteriorate your paint job if you let it linger on these surfaces for too long. Strong winds carrying debris can also slowly erode your surfaces. And the more damage your exterior takes on, the more vulnerable it is to the sun’s wrath. While you can’t control the weather, you can defend your exterior from its worst effects. Maintaining clean gutters and sturdy roofing will prevent water from dripping down your exterior and seeping into your foundation, for example. And touching up your paint job when necessary will keep your surfaces well protected.

Wash Your Exterior Surfaces Periodically

While we’re discussing exterior maintenance, it’s important to thoroughly clean your exterior at least once a year. Doing so will remove dirt, dust, debris, and other contaminants that are tarnishing your paint job and may begin to eat away at your exterior. Moreover, a well-maintained paint job is less prone to fading than a dirty, neglected one. If you don’t have access to a pressure washer or feel confident operating one yourself, hire professional pressure washing services to tackle this important project for you.

Prepare Your Surfaces Properly Before Painting

Much of the work to prevent paint fading is actually done prior to the paint job itself. Proper surface preparation (e.g., cleaning, removal, sanding, priming, etc.) is a prerequisite for beautiful, long-lasting painting results. By properly priming your exterior surfaces before painting, you provide a more receptive and durable substrate for the paint to adhere to. While sunlight can still result in some fading over time, a well-prepared surface will help the paint withstand environmental pressures and retain its appearance and adhesion.

Plant Some Trees

This final point is said somewhat jokingly, mainly because new trees take a long time to grow. Still, the point remains: proper shade is a strong ally against paint fading, like having a large umbrella that blocks out the sun. Of course, having trees near your home or business is somewhat of a double-edged sword. On the one hand, the built-in shade is great for exterior home painting; on the other hand, a severely windy day can fling branches, limbs, and entire trees toward your property. If you’re fortunate enough to have some shady trees protecting your property, try to keep them around as long as you can. That said, if they become a threat to your home or business, you’ll want to have them removed.

Secure Your Paint Against the Southern Sun

The sun can be our best friend or worst enemy depending on the situation. If you’d rather keep your home or business on the sun’s good side, work with high-quality paints that offer UV protection, consider choosing lighter colors for your exterior, maintain your exterior surfaces year-round, and properly prepare your exterior before applying a fresh coat of paint. Also, if you’ve got some tall trees around you, be thankful.


If you need additional advice and/or assistance protecting your southern exterior from the sun’s harsh rays, look no further than Nash Painting. Our local painting experts know all about the Nashville climate and how to counteract its worst outcomes. To learn more about us, our services, and our values, call us at 615-829-6858 today!