I’ve been asked by the family woodworker to paint & decorate his bird and butterfly houses. These projects are for outdoor use & obviously need a protective finish. What do you recommend to prevent the paint from peeling and the wood from rotting & cracking? Since I am a novice in this area, I’m looking for an easy and fast solution. Thank you. – Marilee Gilliland
Tim Inman: Well, they are birdhouses… Any good exterior paint should do the trick. Exterior floor paint is a great source of durable colors. I’d paint the outside only. Hang them for a few days to let the “new” smell go away before use.
Chris Marshall: I would go with a durable exterior latex primer, and topcoat that with latex enamel paint for your embellishments. A film-forming finish such as paint serves as a barrier against water and prevents UV sunlight from breaking down the wood fibers prematurely. Proper surface preparation with primer and paint should be all the projection the wood needs. If the paint is of good quality and is compatible with the primer, it shouldn’t peel for many years to come.