I have a small 75 year old house that is in need of repainting. The
wooden clapboards are in good condition except that they are covered in
alligatored paint. I tried scraping with a heat gun but it is slow
going (though it works). Is there any other way of stripping paint
quickly? My other option is to side with fiber cement boards. I just
hate vinyl. Materials will run about $3500. (My house is small).
Anybody ever scrape and paint an old house? Was it worth it? How
about fiber cement boards?
Thanks for the help.
I have done part of my big old house. I have settled on a radiant
electric heater that softens the paint so it can be easilg stripped.
I found mine at a garage sale. See what it looks like here -\\
(Amazon.com product link shortened)63195302/ref=sr_1_8/102-8807541-7733751?ie=UTF8&s=hi
I hold it very close for about 4-8 seconds, then scrape that area.
Sometimes I can move it gradually left, scrape behind it, and once
the paint starts peeling you can just pull on it and it will peel off.
But that is best case. I typically use a 3" putty knife as my scraper.
I then run over it quickly with a scraper of sander to get a smooth
This does work best when there is a thich layer of paint coats.
It is still slow, but the result looks like new siding.
As you discover the best scrapers and technique for your
surface, it does get faster.
With both of these methods, you must be careful to be sure that your
paint is not lead paint. The heat involved can be high enough to
create volatile lead vapors if these methods are used with lead paint.
There is a lower temperature infrared paint remover that is supposed
to be lead safe, I'm thinking of giving it a try.
In all old houses, somewhere there is a layer of lead paint. I have
heard about the infrared systems, but I'm not sure if they really work.
When I uses the heat gun, I heat the paint just enough for it to
bubble. I don't know if this releases lead or if you really need to
get it burning.
The infrared systems work but they're not cheap...esp with all the
according their info
"Does not cause lead to be released in the form of plumbic gases from
the paint when operated properly"
I agree they appear functionally identical......hopefully the higher
priced one has better longevity or warranty.
Like a Master heat gun vs a Harbor Freight unit
but if the paint remover is for occasional use (or one job) the
cheaper one is probably a better value.
btw I did run out & buy one of these things
althiough the OP hates vnyl siding at resale time it would be a real
selling point, buyers love low no maintence......
just something to think about providing its not a historic structure or
I find it cheap looking. I am happy with my real wood on my
70 year old house. After stripping and re-painting, it's beautiful.
If they didn't put that awful wood grain look on vinyl and aluminum,
it would look a lot better.
This works really well but takes a bit of practice to avoid gouging,
regardless of the hype. When you're done, prime with a long oil primer
then top coat with a quality latex and you'll have many years of
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