In Advice

One of the first and most common mistakes homeowners make with caulking is believing it is as easy and simple to just apply over the pre-existing caulk.

That mistake could prove to be very aggravating when you find that the caulk does not adhere properly, does not provide the perfect seal, begins to dry up, crack or flake.

These tips will help you make that perfect interior or exterior seal around the home.

caulking for interior and exterior painting

Why Does Caulking Fail

Caulk eventually fails to provide the proper seal around a shower or tub, around the exterior and interior of windows and doors and anywhere else you need to protect from water getting in.

By not caulking around areas such as around the shower or bathtub can create major water damage to drywall and creating havoc with mold issues.  Leaving gaps around windows and doors will leave your home open to outside air entering as well as heat or air conditioning escaping.  Both these energy loss issues can be expensive.

Reasons why caulking fails

Common reasons caulking can fail are:

Not prepping the surface first by removing old caulking, and properly priming the surface first to prepare it for any painting required.

Using a low quality or wrong type of caulk for the specific surface area.

Using the wrong type or a low-quality type of caulk can cause caulking failure.  When using latex or vinyl caulk in a bathroom or around a kitchen sink would not be recommended.  It is best to use a silicone based caulk in areas where water is not to enter.

Not applying enough of a bead of caulk.  You don’t need to overkill it by layering on too much but enough to seal the gap properly.

Caulking Success

  1. Choose the appropriate caulk type for the job/surface.
  2. Follow the directions/instructions on the caulking tube.  You can ask any of the experts at one of your local hardware type big box stores, an expert at any Benjamin Moore Store or professional painters.
  3. Use good quality caulk for your home improvement project. This will ensure it is the correct one to use on wood, ceramic tile, concrete, glass, brick even in some instances where moisture is apparent or unavoidable.
  4. Prepare your surface properly before applying any caulking. This requires you to clean the surface, remove any old caulking that has either cracked, peeled or become old. ensure all peeling paint is also removed before any other caulking is applied.
  5. To give the caulk and paint a good bonding you should give it a primer. This way the paint adheres properly to the fresh new caulking. Priming it will also avoid it from improper drying and poor performance after paint is applied.


Before we at PG Paint & Design – Ottawa Painters begins any painting project whether it’s interior painting or exterior painting, we ensure that all caulking is still in good condition.  We then discuss the issues found with you the homeowner and once approved we will repair or replace with fresh new caulking.

Caulking is a great sealant especially around window and door frames along with the trim.  It seals any gaps between the wood and if the wrong caulk is applied you will have caulking failure, just as one example, the silicone type of caulk should not be painted over.

For any other professional painter tips and advice feel free to scroll through some of our other house painting blog.  You can always contact us at PG Paint & Design – Ottawa House Painters by phone or email to schedule your interior and exterior home painting project.

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