Caulking – Why Is It Important?
So, the question is, why is caulking an important process for home repair and maintenance? There are many reasons as to why this is so, and they are as follows:
• Caulk seals cracks on walls, which allows air to escape or enter. By caulking your home, your heating or cooling system becomes more efficient, thus saving more energy.
• Some materials used in construction of homes or other structures can contract or expand due to temperature change. Using flexible caulk seals cracks that can develop because of expansion or contraction.
• Caulk can be used around pipes, drains, faucets and other plumbing fixtures in order to provide a barrier that seals out moisture and water. This keeps water away from areas that can easily be damaged by excessive moisture.
• Caulk seals out holes and cracks, preventing the entrance of insects into your home.
• Caulk is used to provide an attractive finish for joints and corners of different materials.
• Caulking prevents numerous damages to your home and saves you money and time in the long run.
Caulking compounds can be used in different areas in your home, both on the inside and on the outside as well. Interior and exterior surfaces such as windows, doors, frames, ceilings and board joints can all benefit from caulking. Of course, let us not forget the importance of caulking in plumbing fixtures and other areas with water.
It is generally advised to caulk before painting. But of course, there might be cases as to where caulking would be best done after painting. However, you need to be sure that the caulk completely dries before it is painted on.
Choosing the Right Caulk
Before starting on any caulking project, it is important to choose the right caulking materials. This means choosing the proper caulk and the dispensing method as to which caulk is applied. There are different varieties of caulk, and the most common of these are are Butyl Rubber, Silicone and Latex.
If you plan to caulk on dry areas such as interior walls and fixtures, latex caulk is your best option. Wet areas like the kitchen and plumbing fixtures should be caulked with silicone. Butyl rubber, on the other hand is great for exterior jobs.
Caulk can be dispensed from different tools, and they can be in the form of cartridges, tubes or from caulking guns. Caulking guns are more popular for producing professional looking results. Of course, the choice depends on you and the area you want to caulk.
Prepping before Caulking
For any caulking project, it is very important to prep the area before starting. The area to be caulked should be cleaned and dried, and if it has been previously caulked, then the old caulk should be removed.
Old caulk can easily be removed with the use of a blade or razor scraper. After scraping the old caulk off from the surface, you can now vacuum the debris and the open crevice or joint. After the areas have been cleaned, you can now start caulking. Of course, you may want to tape or mask the surfaces in order to get a cleaner and more professional looking caulk job.
More Caulking Tips
You should remember that caulk is not permanent, and it deteriorates over time. Make sure to check for deterioration regularly. Inspect window and door frames, walls, joints, counter tops and plumbing fixtures. Remember to inspect the exterior of your home as well – and these include corners, angles, sidings and the like. Make your inspection a regular one, and re – caulk immediately as soon as you find a separation or deterioration.
Keep in mind that caulking is an important procedure that can do wonders to your home, and in no ways should it be left out when it comes to home maintenance and repair. Make sure that you follow proper instructions when it comes to caulking, and in case you have doubts on how to apply caulk, you can ask for help from home maintenance professionals near you. And the best place to find those painting professionals is right here on our site in the painter directory. Be sure to check it out!