Category Archives: Home Painting

What You Need to Know about Lead Paint

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If you own a home that was built before 1978, when the Federal Government banned lead paint in residential structures, you received a lead disclosure as part of your sales transaction. In other words, there is the potential of lead hazard in your home environment, and it’s a good idea to be informed of the risks related to this common problem.

What Is Lead and Why Was It Ever Added to Paint?

Lead is a heavy metal that was added to paint until 1978 to make paint durable and water resistant. Unfortunately, it’s also toxic and can cause a wide range of symptoms in individuals who are exposed to it. These include developmental delays, learning disabilities, weight loss, headaches, fatigue and abdominal pain. Unfortunately, children are particularly susceptible to lead poisoning, and the most common source of exposure is consuming chips of deteriorating lead-based paint.

The good news is that lead paint with no cracking or chipping is unlikely to pose health risks to loved ones. However, areas of wear and tear can expose underlying layers of paint that can produce lead dust, particularly on stair railings, window sills, door frames and banisters. This dust can be inhaled and produce symptoms.

What Can You Do to Reduce the Risk of Lead Exposure from Interior Paint?

As a homeowner, there are strategies to reduce the risk of lead exposure in your home.
These include:

  • Cleaning up paint chips as soon as you spot them
  • Wiping down painted surfaces on a weekly basis
  • Washing children’s hands frequently
  • Preventing children from chewing or picking at painted surfaces

As well, it’s important to keep paint, particularly baseboards and trim-work in sound condition. If your “vintage” home is showing signs of wear and tear, new paint can reduce any potential exposure to lead. While lead paint does pose some risk, there are strategies for ensuring the safety of your home.

Learn more about painting old surfaces from the paint experts at Ellsworth Home Services. Call us today at 480-593-2265.

Spring – The Perfect Season for Exterior Painting Projects

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There’s an old saying here in the Grand Canyon state. “Arizona – where summer spends the winter.” In the Valley of the Sun, spring comes especially early. The moderate temperatures in the months of February, March and April are ideal for all kinds of outdoor activities including golf, tennis, baseball, hiking and… house painting. OK, some activities are best left to the professionals. Scheduling your exterior house painting projects before the temperatures climb into triple digits is a smart idea and a wise investment in your home.

The southwest is the hottest region in the United States. At an elevation of 1,000 feet, Phoenix experiences phenomenal sunshine year-round and extreme sun exposure during the long months of summer. Protecting your exterior siding or stucco with quality paints and workmanship is essential to the upkeep of your home. It may be over-simplifying, but paint is like sun block for your house. You don’t need to be an expert or professional painter to recognize the damage done by the intensity of the sun’s ultra violet rays as you drive through the neighborhoods of Phoenix. In more moderate zones, it is recommended to apply a fresh coat of paint every seven to 10 years depending on wear and tear. In Arizona, it’s ideal to paint exteriors every five years. Here’s three reasons why spring is the ideal time of year for your exterior home painting project.

Perfect Temperature

Average springtime temperatures in Phoenix hover between 75 to 80 degrees, which is absolutely perfect for exterior house painting. In summer, the surfaces and siding can get so hot it’s not beneficial to apply paint. Cooler temperatures in spring allow for ideal application of paint with normal drying times.

Dry Surfaces, Less Rain and Humidity

In spring, the exterior surfaces of your home (wood, stucco, brick and metal) are naturally dry and ideal for painting. As June approaches, the humidity and summer storms pickup, which create unique challenges for house painters. Wet surfaces or a torrential downpour on freshly painted houses can wreak havoc on the curing process of the paint. Drying and hardening of the paint is best in a totally dry environment.

Happier Painters

Exterior painting in the middle of a Phoenix summer heatwave is a tall order. Working outdoors in springtime, on the other hand, is a pleasure. The paint is literally easier to apply and let’s face it, happy painters make the jobs go smoother.

To speak with an expert, friendly painting professional, contact Ellsworth Home Services at 480-593-2265.

Interior Paint Finishes – Know Your Sheen

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Perusing the paint department of your local hardware store, you’ll likely notice a variety of paint finish options. Paint manufacturers have many names for their different sheens to make this even more confusing. Because the sheen chosen is just as important as getting the paint color right, you want to choose carefully. For most paint projects, you’ll likely have to choose two or more types of finish. Here are the basics of interior paint finishes to help guide your decision.


Flat paint looks just like it sounds. It creates a dull, almost velvet-like finish that is ideal for living rooms, home offices and formal dining rooms. Flat paint is the easiest to touch up and adds a particularly nice depth of color to walls. However, it absorbs stains and can’t be effectively washed. So, it’s not a good idea in children’s rooms or other highly-used areas.

Low Sheen

Also called eggshell, satin, low-luster or silk, low sheen paint is less porous than flat paint, but not shiny. Because it can be wiped down, it’s a smart choice for kitchens and bathrooms. It can even be used for kids’ bedrooms, hallways and family rooms.

Medium Sheen

This type of paint is sometimes called semi-gloss or soft-gloss. Highly durable and easy to clean, it’s most often used for doors, windows and trim. Yet, don’t be tempted to use medium sheen for entire walls as it will result in a cheap, plastic-like look.

High Sheen

With the hardest, smoothest finish, high sheen paint, also called gloss, is the right choice for doors, windows and trim that get a lot of use. Dirt and stains don’t stick to high sheen paint, making it especially easy to clean. This finish is never used on walls or ceilings.

It can be challenging to determine the right interior paint finish for your painting project. This is why it’s always a wise idea to work with a painting professional. At Ellsworth Home Services, we have the experience and know-how to help you choose the finishes that will work best for your home. Call us at 480-593-2265 to find out more about how we can help you.

Interior Paint Trends for Phoenix Area Homes in 2018

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Just as fashions change over time, so do interior paint color trends. Here in the Valley of the Sun, paint colors tend to reflect our unique landscape and climate. As well, there’s a natural desire to choose colors that create soothing, comfortable, yet casual spaces. Still, interior paint trends continue to evolve, and the following are some of the most prevalent for the year ahead.

Muted Modern

Mid-century modern continues to be a popular style in the greater Phoenix area for good reason. Inspired by once part-time resident Frank Lloyd Wright, this architectural style is found in many valley neighborhoods. Colors, such as cool grey, robin’s egg blue and other soft muddied pastels serve as a neutral but sleek backdrop for the sleek angles of these homes and their furnishings.

Defined Spaces

With many homes being renovated with large open concepts, painting one wall or even half a wall can define a space, such as a dining area or reading nook. A pop of color, such as vermillion, aqua or fuchsia, can turn an otherwise empty area into a unique space.

Cozy Retreats

With our surplus of sunshine, many of us crave a break into a darker haven, particularly in a bedroom or study. Deep, light-absorbing colors can create a cocoon-like effect. Paint colors such as slate, midnight blue and yes, even black, produce a stylish and dramatic, yet comforting vibe that can create a space perfect for introspection and relaxation.

Ethnic Vibes

Phoenix residential architecture is incredibly diverse. From homes inspired by Tuscan villas to estates that reflect the style of Moorish palaces, there’s plenty of inspiration from far-flung places. Choosing interior paint colors that reflect a cultural connection is a growing trend away from the tried-and-true white walls. Even if you have a home that lacks unique exterior style, you can still create a global look by choosing paint colors inspired by ethnic prints, tropical motifs and indigenous handiwork. Rich, spicy colors such as cinnamon, plum, and cerulean can transform even the blandest room into an exotic, bohemian space.

Natural Reflections

Here in the desert, we are surrounded by natural beauty. Bringing the colors of our landscape inside can create a seamless, rustic and soothing environment that just feels right. Consider interior paint colors like rusty browns, goldenrod, terracotta and sage.
It’s surprising just what is possible with paint. Of course, this starts with professional interior painting. Call Ellsworth Home Services today to schedule a free estimate.

Fall: The Ideal Season for Exterior House Painting in Phoenix

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Most national house painting experts will tell you that late spring and summer are the best times to paint your home. Yet, things are different here in the Valley of the Sun. When it comes to exterior house painting in Phoenix and the surrounding areas, exterior painting is possible all year long, and fall is particularly favorable. What makes fall a great time for house painting? Here are some reasons why you may want to schedule your exterior paint project now.

Less Temperature Fluctuation

The fall months in the greater Phoenix metro area are known for being delightful – not too hot, not too cool. It’s an ideal time for painting when daytime and nighttime temperatures fluctuate the least.

The temperature range at which it’s best to paint the exterior of a home varies on the type and brand of paint. In general, it’s optimal to paint between the temperatures of 50 degrees and 90 degrees Fahrenheit. This will give time for the paint to cure properly while not drying so fast that brush strokes can’t be evened out.

Less Moisture

Monsoon storms and summer humidity can create a challenge for painting homes in Arizona. For the best results, paint needs to be applied to a dry surface. When there is a hard rain, it’s important to let the surfaces sit for at least one full day before painting. For more porous surfaces, like wood and masonry, it may be necessary to wait even longer. Once monsoon season is over, there is typically an ideal window of time of low humidity before winter storms set in. This is the perfect time to schedule your exterior paint project. The ideal amount of moisture in the air for exterior painting is between 40 and 70 percent.

At Ellsworth Home Services, we take all weather variables into account to determine the best time to paint your home’s exterior. As your professional home painting team, you are always assured that we will paint only when we can apply a long-lasting coat of paint. In other words, we will wait for the right conditions. Now is the right time to discuss your exterior painting needs with us. Call Ellsworth Home Services now at 480-593-2265 for a free estimate or for answers to all your home painting questions.

Things to Consider When Painting Your Phoenix Home

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Painting a home may seem like a straightforward job that only requires a brush, a roller and a can of paint. Yet, with Phoenix’s extreme climate, there are unique considerations to ensure a quality paint job. High temperatures, dust storms, wind and rain can all wreak havoc on the exterior of a home. There are also unique challenges when it comes to painting stucco. Having the right mix of techniques and products is essential.

Timing Is Everything

Temperature and humidity are important to how paint cures. Thus, you don’t want your home painted shortly before or after a rainstorm. It can impact how paint sticks to surfaces. And, if a home is painted shortly before a storm with wind, dirt and dust can actually adhere to wet paint.

The Challenge of Stucco

Nearly every home in the Valley has stucco walls because it’s particularly durable in desert climates. Yet, it’s not the easiest surface to paint. It is susceptible to fading and cracking, as well as a phenomenon known as efflorescence which looks like a powdery white residue. Stucco can also attract and collect dirt and dust. This is why it’s vital to carefully surface prep a home before painting.

Call a Professional

During monsoon season, extreme heat, rain and wind are common. The wise choice is to hire a professional painting contractor, particularly during the summer months. A qualified painting contractor will use quality paint and painting equipment. They will also carefully evaluate the weather to avoid painting on rainy or windy days. Surfaces will be thoroughly prepped, which includes a power washing and crack repair.

Painting a home in Phoenix is never a simple job. To ensure you get quality results, call Ellsworth Home Services. We have the experience and know-how to ensure an expert paint job that is strong enough to weather our challenging climate.

How to Choose a Home Painter

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The quality of your home’s interior or exterior paint job can make a tremendous difference when it comes to the overall look of your home. When it comes time to paint, whether it’s one room or your entire home, hiring a professional home painter can save you time and ensure you’ll get the results you want.

Yet, not all painting contractors provide the same level of service. Before you make a decision, here are some questions to ask:

How long have you been in business?

There are many newcomers in the painting trade, and many companies have high turnover. Before you select a company or solo contractor, ask how long they’ve been painting. If they haven’t been in the business for at least a few years, they’re not likely to have the skill to produce professional results.

Do You Have a License and Insurance?

Painting contractors should have state-issued licenses, as well as general liability and workers’ compensation insurance. When it comes to choosing a painter, this should be a non-negotiable. Any reputable painter will be able to present the proper documents. Remember, licensing and insurance are there to protect both you and the painter.

Can you explain your preparation process?

Inexperienced or poor quality painters often cut corners when it comes to preparation. An experienced painting contractor will take the time to do what’s necessary to ensure quality workmanship.

Do you have references?

Any painting contractor you’re considering should gladly provide references that you can contact before making a decision. If they don’t, this is a red flag that indicates either they’re not very good or inexperienced.

Do you have recommendations?

Quality paint professionals stay current with the latest paint products, tools and techniques. They also have preferences and recommendations when it comes to paints and finishes based on their experience.

Can you provide a detailed estimate?

There should be no surprises when it comes time for paying for a pain job. Ask for a clear estimate that includes the scope of the project, materials that will be used and the prep work that’s included. This should be provided to you in a professional, written contract.

Looking for a quality indoor or exterior home painter? Give Ellsworth Home Services a call today. We’re the trusted source for home painting in the greater Phoenix area.