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Time to remove all old, cracking paint

The Corinthian columns on our church collect rust at their bases. How can we get rid of th discoloration? The rest of the columns were painted with an oil-based point which has cracked and peeled under the last coat of latex. What is the remedy? Gertrude Slack Brazil, Ind.

To remedy the rust problem, first locate its ferrous-metal source. Seal the source with a top-quality rust-preventative metal primer.

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Now about the cracked oil-based paint which is visible through the last coat of latex. The problem here is probably the buildup of many layers of paint over the years.

If that conjecture is correct, removal of all the old paint down to the bare surface is probably in order, followed by the application of a top-quality primer and one or two finish coats.

It is not unusual for a painted surface to develop cracks after a number of coats have been applied. Each coat can expand and contract at different rates as the weather changes, thus precipating the cracking. When more paint is applied on these cracked areas, the lines are bound to show through.

Our guess is that it is time for a complete removal of all old paint.

Ask for help from a technician at a local paint manufacturer or paint store. An on-the-spot inspection can show the best method for removing the old paint and the best precedure and material for refinishing.

Paint manufacturers welcome calls on such matters, we have found, and their expert advice is usually generously offered.

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