Should I expect this from all house painters?

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I had the outside of my house painted. I hired a company that does lots of different exterior work and is rated by lots of people as practically perfect. They didnt do some things I think should have been done. What do you think?
They ignored spots where old paint was peeling and simply painted over them instead of sanding first.
They left window panes dirty with streaks and handprints after scraping paint from them (the windows were cleaned before the painters arrived).
You know how you paint in a gap between two pieces of wood that aren't flush with one another by painting thicker than on the surface? They didn't. I think I read that this is a result of the invention of paint sprayers that in the days when you painted with a brush, you were close enough to see things like this and take care of it.
They didnt avoid walking on my plants over and over instead of avoiding them, which was possible, albeit inconvenient.
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That's a major red flag and sure sign of a hack. Those spots needed to be scraped or sanded, any bare spots primed, etc. Place should have been power washed before too and I bet they didn't do that either. I would have insisted that they do the prep work properly and if they did not, fire them. What did you do? What did the contract say about prep work? Even if it said nothing, basic prep work like scraping off loose paint is standard that even if it said nothing they should have done it.

That's not right either.

If the job didn't specify brush or spray, then it would be up to them.

Did you tell them about it while it was occuring? What did they say? You could withhold some reasonable amount from the final payment. But of course it depends on what kind of plants, how easy it would have been to avoid them, etc.
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This is professional incompetence. You may find that a local TV station or newspaper might be interesteed in publicising these faults, depending on local social conditions: the mass media are often "contrarian" i.e. like telling their audiences their general assumptions are wrong (e.g. the reputation of this contractor.)
But because your interest is the condition of the house (not local journalism) you should first ask the contractor to redo the defective work at his own expense.
(My all-wood house was repainted this summer. Preparation took more time than the application of paint because every inch was hand-sanded beforehand.)
--
Don Phillipson
Carlsbad Springs
  Click to see the full signature.
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On 9/8/2011 9:54 AM, snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote:

Did you ask them when they were doing it or after you noticed it? Unless there were other circumstances such as a negotiated cheap price because you said "I am going to dump this place, just slap the paint on" it is definitely standard practice to remove loose and peeling paint. Prep is the most important part of a paint job.

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If you have peeling paint you prolly have a moisture problem. Water vapor pressure will push the paint right off your siding. Sanding won't help much.
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On 9/8/2011 12:42 PM, Michael Angelo wrote:

Whats a "prolly"?
No description was given so it could be something tiny or something extensive. A competent painter would point out the existence of a moisture problem and suggest having it addressed because they know new paint will also peel.
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http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/prolly
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mail.me...

Wiki, huh?
Consider the source...
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You 'prolly' won't like this source either but here goes: http://www.macmillandictionary.com/dictionary/american/prolly
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On 9/8/2011 4:50 PM, DerbyDad03 wrote:
message

I just shake my head and wonder why an adult would want to sound like they aren't far away from using something with another cute name "binkie"
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Prolly cuz i don't care what the fuck anyone thinks.
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wrote:

the house was last painted. Paint on wood ALWAYS peels, eventually. Any one who calls themselves a painter and does not scrape/wire-brush all loose paint first, and then spot prime (or perhaps use self priming paint - the jury is still out on that stuff) is a liar.
And anyone who paints a house without thoroughly washing it (pressure washer is ideal - and helps stripping the loose paint) is just taking your money.
The house needs to be washed, scraped (and sanded if necessary) allowed to dry, primed, and THEN Painted.
When I had my aluminum siding repainted, the handy-man who did the job (all by brush) did not leave ANY clean-up required - did not trample ANY plants, and did a fabulous job - for what I considered to be an extremely fair price - using the paint I specified (which was pricier stuff than he normally uses - and he was favourably impressed)
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Depends...
You haven't defined the situation here yet with much detail:
-- Where is the house located ? (Labor rates vary by geographical location)
-- How much did you pay for the pain job ? (If you paid way less than normal, you get what you get, know what i mean ?)
So if you want to clue us in on some more of the important details that would be great thanks...
~~ Evan
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Labor rates in the area obviously have nothing to do with the issue.

That's true to a point. But the person having the work done deserves a job that at least meets minimum acceptable practices in the industry or trade. You know of anywhere that it's acceptable to paint over blistered paint?

That would still leave you clueless, as usual.
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I had the outside of my house painted. I hired a company that does lots of different exterior work and is rated by lots of people as practically perfect. They didnt do some things I think should have been done. What do you think?
They ignored spots where old paint was peeling and simply painted over them instead of sanding first.
They left window panes dirty with streaks and handprints after scraping paint from them (the windows were cleaned before the painters arrived).
You know how you paint in a gap between two pieces of wood that aren't flush with one another by painting thicker than on the surface? They didn't. I think I read that this is a result of the invention of paint sprayers that in the days when you painted with a brush, you were close enough to see things like this and take care of it.
They didnt avoid walking on my plants over and over instead of avoiding them, which was possible, albeit inconvenient.
Did they have a Green Card?? ww
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ransley: Why do you think I paid them?
Don Phillipson: Instead of TV or newspapers, which I didnt think about, I am reviewing the company online. I have asked the contractor to redo the work.
George: What does it matter when I asked them? They didnt do it. But thanks for letting me know you think it is standard practice.
snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net: Why do you think they didnt power wash? I asked for the job to be completed properly. The contract talked about power washing, caulking, and generic prep. Thanks for letting me know you think the windows should have been cleaned. Who cares whether they choose to brush or spray? They should do the job right either way. I didnt tell them about the plants while it was occurring, because I wasnt there (who can take off every day of work to watch the painters?). I can withhold some reasonable amount from the final payment only if my local contract laws allow and only if I have reasonable proof I will suffer financial damage, i.e. the plants will need to be replaced.
Michael Angelo: Thanks for alerting me to a possible moisture problem. Why do you think its on my siding? The peeling spots certainly were caused by moisture, but not from the inside.
Evan: I gave as much detail as needed. What do geographic labor rates have to do with performance? I paid more than average.
George: The spots are something tiny, hence the use of the word spots (spot: a small area visibly different from the surrounding area). Yes, Im giving you a hard time for your "prolly" sentence. Thanks for letting me know you think a competent painter would point out the existence of a moisture problem and suggest having it addressed.
snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca: Thanks for letting me know you think painters should scrape/wire-brush/spot prime/wash.
WW: Yes, any worker who is not a citizen has a Green Card. But why would that matter, other than this: Natives of Latin America working in the U.S. generally work harder than natives of the U.S., and are willing to do jobs natives of the U.S. wont (Sources: personal observation, news reports, studies).
snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net: Thanks for letting me know your think a person having the work done deserves a job that at least meets minimum acceptable practices in the industry or trade.
The Ghost In The Machine: Instead of the BBB, which I find not very useful, I am reviewing the company online.
Everyone: This was fun! I had extra, useless time to waste while stuck on a computer and chose to reply to you all. Overall, you have confirmed to me that what they did was wrong and what I am doing is correct. Long live USENET!
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Because it's part of the prep work and another step that can be skipped by a half-assed painter.
I

It would be interesting to know exactly what it says about prep work. Even if it only says power wash, prep and paint, it's clear to any reasonable person that certainly would include scraping any peeling paint and priming any bare wood areas.
Thanks for letting me know

The issue is you expect paint to be applied thicker in some areas to better cover small gaps in the wood. Unless the contract calls for that, I would say that is not a part of the normal painting process. It is something that will occur naturally to some extent if done by brush and can be accomplished by a painter using a brush, but not by spraying. So, if the contract is silent on this and they sprayed, I think you don't have a legitimate beef about small gaps not being filled with paint.
I didnt tell them about the plants while it was occurring,

I don't know where you could be that contract law would not allow you to withhold some payment for damage. I'd say you have damage regardless of whether the plants eventually recover. If they made the place look like a mess for a month, that's worth something too and you could withhold $50 to make a point. I doubt they are gonna sue you over $50.

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Because you "asked for it" doesn't mean that was what was agreed to in writing... All we have to go on is your word and since you are asking here what is normal for painters to do, you are clearly not CERTAIN as to what should be done by painters...
Your lack of supervision of work being performed by a contractor is not the contractor's problem... Your agreement "contract" did not inform the contractors that they need to take EXTREME precautions around your plants... Unless the plants *die* your painter will not have to replace them -- as they will grow back after being disturbed...
If you really had cared about the plants, you would have either had someone there to supervise while the work was being done or would have made clear in writing that no plantings were to be disturbed...
Sounds like you will have to chalk this one off as a learning experience as you did not declare and define your standards and expectations in writing -- what you think is reasonable may not be if there is no other way to access the area to be painted safely...
You can not go back after the fact and try to hold an unsupervised contractor responsible for items you neglected to specify in advance and since you voluntarily decided not to supervise the work in progress you gave up any ability to renegotiate the conditions of the work as it took place and have to live with what you have unless you can prove intentional vandalism of your property...

Because what you THINK is average may be wrong... Again we only have your word to go on and you haven't disclosed any dollar amounts so that the ACTUAL "reasonableness" of what you paid can be debated...
I don't feel as though you have the right skill set and knowledge to be able to determine what is reasonable or not in this circumstance -- you sound a lot more like a pissed off plant owner who now has buyer's remorse...
~~ Evan
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On Fri, 9 Sep 2011 09:53:54 -0700 (PDT), Evan

It is NOT normal for a professional painting contractor to damage plantings or leave a mess.

"Extreme" measures are not required. Did these Klutzes use scaffolding? Generally scaffolding reduces damage to plantings
Professional contractors do not need to be supervised by the home-owner.

I'm glad YOU accept sub-standard workmanship.

Not true. Reasonable expectations when paying a "professional" include having the job done right.

easier to prove.

Price has nothing to do with it.
You ever hear of the guy who came around asking if there were any odd jobs he could do to earn some money. The home-owner said he needed the porch out the back painted.
A couple hours later the guy comes back in and says "the job's done, but I think I should tell you that's not a Porch- it's a Beemer.

I'd say the OP sounds like a somewhat particular home-owner who did not get what they bargained for - and had a reasonable expectation of getting for their money.

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