Mobile homes can be painted like any other dwelling. There are a few things to keep in mind before starting this project. Check with the mobile home park to make sure there are no regulations on paint colour and keep in mind that many have rules that say the skirting around the bottom of the home must be the same colour as the house. If this is the case, make sure you have enough paint to cover the home and the skirting as well as the trim, if any.
Pick a Color
If colour selection is not an issue with mobile home park management, the next step is to pick an exterior colour. The Kelly-Moore Paint Company offers the following advice. Colours will look different in different surroundings, so take advantage of paint chip samples available where paint is sold. Check the samples against what the mobile home is situated by, keeping in mind that the actual paint will be lighter because the sample tends to be concentrated. If the sample chip is not sufficient to make a decision, consider painting a piece of aluminium or vinyl, matching whatever exterior material the mobile home is made of, with the colour to see the effect in different lighting and different times of the day. In general, painting manufacturers offer design ideas and colour palettes on their websites to assist in colour selection.
Supplies and Preparation
The professional at the paint store will be able to assist in brush selection, depending on the type of primer and paint to be used. Other necessary supplies include painter's tape to tape off surfaces that will not be painted, dust sheets and paint trays. Benjamin Moore recommends several steps to take before picking up a paint brush. If the siding is made from aluminium or vinyl, make sure that surfaces that are to be painted are cleaned and rinsed to remove any soap residue. Sherwin Williams has a proprietary cleaner that it says will remove oil and grease. Whichever product used, make sure the surface is dried thoroughly.
Patch any cracks and imperfections and remove rust on aluminium, sanding the surface smooth. Remove any exterior items attached to the structure, including shutters and mailboxes.
If the exterior of the mobile home is steel, Sherwin Williams recommends using sandpaper or steel wool to remove rust but cautions that bare steel has to be primed the same say it is cleaned to avoid exposure to the elements. Similarly, if the surface is shiny, Benjamin Moore recommends lightly sanding the siding so the paint sticks better.
Priming and Painting
Paint companies have primer especially suited for metal surfaces. According to Sherwin Williams, primer is designed to hide stains and other spots, even out and seal surfaces and help the paint cover better. Make sure primer is completely dry before applying paint. As with primer, there is paint available for the specific surface being covered, including paint that inhibits rust formation on metal surfaces. Kelly-Moore recommends using flat finishes on exterior siding because the matt texture downplays flaws. Use gloss on the trim and gutters because of its resistance to stains. When in doubt, ask the professional at the paint store.