Tips for Painting Fiberglass Surfaces

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The tips for painting fiberglass surfaces need to be followed carefully to achieve the best results in painting of fiberglass.

 

Fiberglass is a fiber reinforced polymer which constitutes a plastic matrix reinforced by glass fibers. It is strong and light and is used for many purposes. This material finds its utility in boats, automobiles, pipes, water tanks, roofing and cladding. Certain tips for painting fiberglass surfaces need to be known in order to exploit this material to its fullest.

Reasons for painting a fiberglass surface: There are reasons why a fiberglass surface needs to be painted. Depending upon the type of resin used, fiberglass surfaces can fall prey to sun damage or invasion of water. In case water infiltration takes place, the surface will be prone to blisters or bubbles and this might cause a lot of damage. Sunlight makes the surface crumble and brings forth a lot of trouble. To curb these problems and also to make a fiberglass surface look good, it is often painted.

Preparing the Surface: Preparing the surface for painting involves the most important part of the tips for painting fiberglass surfaces. The humidity of the atmosphere should not exceed 60% and the temperature should be within 19° to 35° Celsius. The paint will take a longer time to dry if the temperature is lowered. In high temperatures, the paint will harden instantly and leave no time to smoothen out bumps or uneven levels. Therefore, it is best to maintain an optimum temperature.

A surface which is free from grease or oil will provide for smooth painting. Also, there needs to be as little blemishes as is possible or else it will show up through the paint. Glossy surfaces will not allow paint to adhere to it and therefore the surface needs to undergo sanding. Carrying out this process with the help of wet sandpaper is a safe bet.

To paint over a fresh fiberglass surface, a primer should be used. Rough sanding should be carried out on a pre-primed surface. If a surface already has the first coat of paint, it is advisable to go in for a fine sanding. In case you are painting over succeeding layers, use wet sandpaper to rub the surface before you start painting. The primer serves a dual purpose while painting a fiberglass surface. It acts as a barrier against water and also helps the paint adhere firmly to the fiberglass.

Methods of painting: The tips for painting fiberglass surfaces should be followed to get the best results. There are two ways in which a fiberglass surface can be painted. One method is the spray painting and the other is the roll and tip method. In the first method, a spray gun or compressor is used to apply paint over the surface. This method involves an amount of practice and requires only one person to do the job. Lesser time is required for the drying process.

The roll and tip method requires very little skill and involves lesser risks of inhaling fumes. However, it has a few disadvantages over the spray method as it is more time consuming and the paint applied by the roll and tip method takes a longer time to dry.

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