How often should you paint your exterior cladding?

The Team at Palliside 13 October 2016

Exterior Cladding


Regular maintenance of your exterior cladding on your home will ensure it remains watertight and looking great for many years to come. For most types of cladding, maintenance means painting.

The layer of paint on the product acts as the sealant, but time and weather can wear it away, and it needs to be redone. As the homeowner, this is your responsibility, and a job well-done will see your home safe and dry for years to come.

When should you repaint?

The time between touch-ups and painting varies from property to property. It depends on several factors:

  • The type of cladding material you’ve chosen (wood, monolithic, concrete render, etc) and the size of that cladding (paint lasts longer on narrow boards vs wide boards).

  • The quality and cleanliness of surface.

  • The quality and type of paint used.

  • The colour you’ve chosen. Lighter colours last longer, because they absorb less heat than dark tones. Heat absorption is what leads to the paint expanding and contracting.

  • Number of coats applied – a greater number of thin coats gives a better result than less layers of thick paint.

  • The weather and orientation – a wall that gets full sun will fade faster than one that is shaded. Likewise, homes in exposed, high wind and coastal sections will see paint deteriorate faster.

You will usually expect to paint your exterior cladding every 7-10 years, although factors like the weather may mean you need to do it sooner. When choosing cladding for your home, investigate the different options available to you, as some cladding systems – such as uPVC cladding – don’t require repainting at all (the colour is built into the cladding product itself).

Speak to your builder, cladding manufacturer or installer about the proper maintenance for your product.

Related content: Weatherboard cladding material comparison


How to know when it’s time to repaint?

Deciding when it’s time to paint your exterior cladding can be difficult, especially if you’re new to home-ownership.

The biggest clue it’s time to paint will come when you notice peeling or cracking paint. This is one of the first signs a home needs repainting, and needs to be addressed as soon as possible. Moisture can penetrate wood framing and foundations through cracks and peeled sections, causing water damage that will be costly to fix.

You may find that paint around your trim (windows and doors) needs repainting more often than the rest of the house.


Some cladding systems – such as cedar – are stained, instead of painted. This gives a home a beautiful natural wood finish while protecting the wood from warping and discolouring. However, staining is a labour-intensive, high-maintenance finish.

Your boards will need to be re-stained every 1-2 years. Remember that if your building is high, or some places are difficult to reach, you may need to hire scaffolding to complete this job.

Choosing low maintenance cladding

If all this talk of repainting and finishing sounds like too much hassle to you, then make sure you choose a low-maintenance cladding solution. The Palliside range of uPVC cladding requires no painting, as the protective paint layer is built into the cladding product itself.

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