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Paintshop: Painting in Bad Weather

Heat/humidity. Full sun. Mist/rain/fog. Smog. Dust/dirt. Wind/whirlwinds. Arctic blasts. Cold/frost/ice. Sleet.


You know the policy: Paint until you can’t get anything done. Then try to paint anyway.


You’ve heard it before:


“You can’t let a little bad weather stop you.”


“A little rain or wind never hurt anyone.”


“Do it anyway.”


“Figure it out.”


“Just get it done. Now!”


Fourteen Tips for Painting in Bad Weather


  1. What’s the job? And what do you need to get it done?
  2. Assess your situation and the scene, relative to the project.
  3. How bad are the weather conditions?
  4. Do a last-minute check of the weather.
  5. What can you take care of while waiting for the bad weather to calm down, or clear up?
  6. Who has the final say whether you (a) hold off and reschedule, (b) wait a while, or, (c) do it anyway?
  7. Will you actually save time, money and manpower by holding off till the afternoon, or the next day? Or even later?
  8. Which way will your quality still be there?
  9. What can you do to make things work, even in the bad weather?

A. Can you paint less exposed surfaces and areas first.

B. Or, can you prep and paint sunny, less windy, less affected areas first?

SPECIAL TIPS: Remove all ice, water, rust, etc. from the surface to be painted. Make sure the surface is completely dry and smooth before painting. Use fast-drying primers and top coats; they are less affected by changes in the weather.

10. What can you do to protect you and your crew?

A. Can you partially tent or tarp the work area to cut out exposure to the elements – eg. wind, drizzle, snow, cold?

B. Allow enough air to circulate for the painted surface to dry.

11. What can you do to protect the crew from unhealthy and unsafe over-exposure?

SPECIAL TIPS: Dress for the conditions: warm coat, hat, work gloves, insulated boots. As soon as possible, invest in some waterproof apparel.

12. When is it time to call it quits? NOTE: Continuous high winds combined with rain do not a good paint job make.

13. What tasks are simply too dangerous in this bad weather? Example: Strong wind gusts are moving the extension ladders around, and pulling at the men’s clothing.

14. Is the painting project more important than following your instinct to just respect the bad weather? And try later?

INDUSTRIAL PAINTER TIP: Exterior painting can always be done, if you can isolate the work from the weather.


Bottom line: In bad weather conditions, health and safety must come first. No painting task nor project is worth a dollar if it costs anyone an injury, a serious illness, or worse.



Make every job site a “safe-weather situation” for your crew and you.


Start your year on a safe footing. Thanks for visiting “Painting with Bob.”

Copyright 2018. Robert D. Hajtovik. All rights reserved.


Paintshop Policies: Problems with Risk Management

Loss of property costs a business a lot of money. And, it can cost YOUR department more than it can afford. Thus, it’s essential to keep track of all losses and damages, even normal-use ones.


  1. Promptly document and report any loss or damage to your (1) supervisor and/or (2) company general manager/superintendent.
  2. Promptly document – keep a log – of any loss or damage that happens under your watch, or that you come upon that happened at another time.
  3. Report the loss or damage to your supervisor. Note: It is his or her job to determine which losses and/or damages should be reported to company management.
  4. Notify management when certain losses or damages occur repeatedly, and after you’ve already reported said incidences to your supervisor. Example: Losses of at least 8-five gallon buckets of new paint continued, for over five months after the foreman painter had repeatedly notified the project supervisor for the contractor for whom they both worked. So, the painter told the company’s superintendent that the losses of needed product continued.
  5. If you continue to suffer larger losses in the Paintshop, even after notification of management, ask your supervisor for a joint meeting with the general manager to discuss possible acceptable solutions.

Tread proactively and carefully when it comes to reporting possible internal, and possibly illegal, transport of products and materials.

Bottom line: Step up to the plate. Report losses and or damages as promptly as possible. And, do not be afraid to extend the reporting to higher-level managers when the standard chains-of-command reporting procedures are not working.


Thanks for keeping on your toes. Even when it’s tough to do the right thing.


“Painting with Bob” extends best wishes for your health, safety and prosperity in 2018.

Copyright 2017. Robert D. Hajtovik. All rights reserved

People Make the Difference: Inside Your Own Life

Time, circumstance and preferences change our holiday agendas. What we do, where we go (or stay), and who we spend the season with reflects our current take on life.




Purdue U. friend Paul.

“I’m in a better place than a year ago. Thanks to prostrate scare, I’ve simplified. I retired as dean, and took a part-time teaching post. My wife and I moved back to southern Indiana. We’re within three hours of all of our children and grandchildren. We downsized to a 1,950 square feet English-style villa, from a 3,800-plus square feet, two-story Georgian with five acres to care for.”


Arizonan family friend.

“I’m ready to let someone else run this business. I don’t need to be in charge any more. I want to take my son and grandsons to the mountains, and fish…”


Aruban pilot pal.

“…leaving the destructive winds was the start of a new life. I sold the tourist charter plane service. I moved back to Columbia, and work with my cousins. At their family coffee plantation. We’ve always gotten along like brothers…”


Former PPG manufacturer’s rep.

“I asked for a smaller region. I had to move over 2,000 miles to get one. My wife and I were able to cut our expenses nearly a third. We were ready for a change of scenery. Relaxed life. More time…”


Painter friend Alex.

He first sent a Scrooge answer.

“The year’s been tough. I’m not in a good place. Nothing’s going right…”


Five minutes later his follow-up:

“Spinal surgery was a success. The doctors say that my son will be walking again by the middle of 2018. His wife, my daughter-in-law, has been able to return to full-time at work. My wife: she’s decorating everything in sight this Christmas…”


Southern Indiana cousin.

“Bob, I finally got it when my nephew asked, ‘Are you gonna be here next May to see me get my degree?’ I called my doctor…got my meds figured out… put myself on that Mediterranean-DASH diet…already lost fourteen pounds…”


Paleontology expert on Silver Lake region, CA.

“I look at my life as a history in the making. Not better than yesterday, or last year. Merely on track…”


My sister, always honest and creative.

“Bob? Who cares? When I get through the day, that’s doing better than when I got up in the morning, and went out the door…”


And me?

“Definitely, a no. 9 in the works. Books on course. Moving forward. Painting life in its right place. New hard drive installed; old one on its way to an expert to try to retrieve some special files… And two double batches of those Archway-like powdered sugar-coated Pecan balls, on the cooling racks.”



Have a blessed and safe holiday week. And thanks from “Painting with Bob.”

Copyright 2017. Robert D. Hajtovik. All rights reserved.



Lead painters – paintshop managers – have many good things to report for 2017. Here are a few of the more than 5,900 responses that I received to the e-mailed question:




  1. Regi.

“Owners ordered the property management to purchase and supply engineering with a much safer, and EPA certified, solution to treat Black mold. MoldSTAT Plus Mold Killer.”


  1. Alec.

“I found enough tinted paint to touch up all thirteen walls in the upgraded suites.”


  1. Danny.

“The air compressor kicked in first try this morning. It’s been malfunctioning. For over three months. No budget to replace it right now.”


  1. Pablo.

“The waterproof grout mix is holding all of those tiles onto the uneven surfaces around the pools…”


  1. Gabe.

“Management approved chief engineer’s request for a FaceMask breathing apparatus, and accessories before the end of 2017. My boss and I opted for a HobbyAir II, with 80-foot hose.””


  1. R.G.

“Starting January 2018, I’ll have a part-time painting assistant three mornings a week.”


  1. Brian.

“When I returned from vacation, some of the crew had cleared out the space to lay out the steel beams for me to spray. Over 120, each 80-foot long, need to be done in less than three days…”


  1. Fernando.

“Boss is paying time and a half when the shop closes down Christmas to New Year’s Day.”


  1. Margo.

“Three more painters have been added to help on the airport project January-February.


  1. Bill.

“Delivery date February 1 for my new (one year old) company truck. The old one is barely running. I’ve had to have it towed three times within the last month…”




DO before you ask management to invest in an expensive product, tool or equipment:  

  1. Research the item (s) you need.
  2. Contact a regional manufacturer’s rep.
  3. Ask for contact information for three contractors that use the product.
  4. Call each; find out what they like and dislike about the product. Also ask about alternate product (s) they recommend, and why.
  5. Then include all of the above information in your written request/proposal for management.


A painter cannot operate his or her paintshop on management’s good intentions, or promises.


Thanks for pushing for what you need, and for persisting until you get results.


Thanks for visiting “Painting with Bob.”

Copyright 2017. Robert D. Hajtovik. All rights reserved.


Painter’s World: And, That’s A Good Thing



  1. Four guest passes to see The Last Jedi. (Thanks, Doc.)


  1. Packed cookies all in the mail, folks.


  1. I’d saved six of seven manuscripts and related files and setups onto flash drives. (See no. __ below.)


  1. Installed new hard drive. Now waiting for copy of new operating system from Microsoft.


  1. Old hard drive is on its way for specialist to run analysis, recover files…reactivate.


  1. So far, all “readers-en-field” have also written reviews. (And all are very positive.)


  1. Online bookseller Curtis is a first-class networker, linking only serious participants.


  1. Connection with best-selling author Buddy A. is proving outstanding.


  1. Artist-sculptor of Neanderthal in cover photo is on board 100 percent. And, with her international connections.


  1. Indiana cousin made it to the altar on December 2. (Three months earlier, his spinal cord was severely damaged in a five-vehicle pile up on the interstate.)


  1. New outpatient neurologist at CNH/FHMG is a very sharp, wholistic health pro. Very up to date on research, therapies and clinical trials.




  1. The new hard drive will not open up. Note: I’m waiting for new Windows 7 from Microsoft.


  1. I lost all of no. 7 manuscript and related files, when the hard drive failed. Rebooting, etc. a NO GO. Started working on this one in 2011.



Sometimes, even good or not so good things encapsulate the opposite effect.


“Painting with Bob” is a blog aimed at helping painters and decorators, including contractors.

Copyright 2017. Robert D. Hajtovik. All rights reserved.


Upcoming Paintshop Posts: November and December 2017

1. Paintshop Software Programs, Aids, Apps, etc.
– Including sources for information

2. Paintshop Policies and Practices: Reporting Problems

A. Problems with products and materials
B. Problems with tools and equipment
C. Problems with theft and/or property damage
D. Problems with teammates related to your job description

3. Painter’s World: How Job Descriptions Have Changed

A. New key words and phrases, and what they mean
B. What term “must be able to do other things” really means
C. Job titles used today
D. Other skills and abilities that painters are expected to have today

4. Paintshop: New Construction Materials that Affect Painter’s Job

A. Examples of new materials used in hotels, commercial buildings, etc.

1) Types of painting and finishing products these new materials require
2) Types of painting tools and equipment needed to apply them

B. Examples of new materials used in residential and commercial-residential buildings
1) Types of painting and finishing products these new materials require
2) Types of painting tools and equipment needed to apply them

5. Paintshop: Techniques and Methods that Painters Need Today to Work on Newer Construction

6. Painter’s World: Painting and Decorating for the Disabled or Handicapped Person

A. What colors work better for the disabled person’s environment
B. What textures work better – and which to avoid
C. What patterns work better – and which to avoid
D. What wallcoverings work better – and which to avoid
E. Why above recommendations or choices are better.
F. Which recommendations actually benefit disabled person – and how, and when.

Happy – and Safe – Halloween!
Copyright 2017. Robert D. Hajtovik. All rights reserved



IN 1946…

At age four, my mother watched a “swirling, dirty gray” funnel approach her at the kitchen window, then lift from the ground. A while later, her father stood outside the farm house. He followed the path that the tornado had taken after lifting.

Directly above that window, the funnel tore off over one-half of the roof shingles. It ripped out red bricks from the chimney. Inside, it popped sections of plaster from the ceilings and walls in every room. Not only behind painted but also wallpapered walls.

The tornado had just missed the family inside the house. But, the “big wind” had pushed in the walls. Then it toppled the big red barn, killing four horses.

In 1993, my grandfather told me that he never figured out where the Billy goat had hidden that day. But, he was the only larger animal spared.

IN 1971…

At age eight, I stood at my third-grade classroom’s span of huge windows, and watched. “Look, Mrs. D., a BIG gray cloud.”

Then, the school’s muffled alarm went off. My teacher shouted, “Hurry, everyone into the hall!” And, next came a deafening and strong WHOOSH! Like a real powerful vacuum cleaner.

The country school was spared, except for windows blown out of four of the classrooms that stood in the tornado’s path.

By the way, from our family’s home located a little southwest of the school, my mother saw the funnel heading for my elementary school. And she phoned the school principal.

IN THE LATE 1980s…

My father had just filled his roller with more paint. A supervisor at the Lever Brothers plant shouted, “Hit the floor, everyone!”

And total chaos hit next. Toppling cases of liquid Wisk laundry detergent. Bottles of Snuggles fabric softener flying and swaying through the air. Steel equipment ripped apart.

It took a while until our company got the call that we painters could return to finish the “safety” paint job. In fact, the project was greatly expanded, because of the major repairs and reconstruction after the tornado struck. Our paint job at the plant got extended over three months.

On September  of 2017…

Decorative painter Jonathan, a friend at Melbourne Beach, secured his one-man paintshop. He hunkered down for Category 3-4 Hurricane Irma’s arrival during the next day.

He’d lived through a number of other major hurricanes and tropical storms. He wasn’t worried. But from experience, he was cautious.

What he had never faced was a tornado.

“I’ll see that twisting and hear that locomotive the rest of my life,” he said on the phone. “My shop is in shambles. All my brushes, paints, templates, etc? Fine.” The 55-year old native of Los Angeles County sounded very shaken. A guy that grew up along the San Andreas Fault Line.


Tornadoes are common and frequent.

“We batten down the hatches,” said aeronautical inventor and industrialist George Manis in July of 1960. He’d arrived home minutes before a set of tornadoes whipped across Lake Wawasee.
But too late to help his wife, Mary, and my mother secure the boats tied up at the piers, and move the heavy wrought iron patio furniture.

“Those lakefront homes were all well-built,” my mother said last week. “They were made to withstand tornadoes, as well as the brutal winter snow and ice storms.”


Tornadoes are often spawned from tropical storms or hurricanes. Sometimes by electrically-charged lightning storms.

Wherever they occur with some regularity, the residents have learned to heed the warnings. They pay attention. They try to secure outdoor furniture, vehicles, boats, etc. They pack up. They move near a sturdy inside wall.


My mother noted that, like those homes hit in Indiana years ago, the ones heavily damaged this month in Central Florida will require major repairs inside and out. “Some reconstruction and restoration.”

Agreed! Many of the Florida properties will also require toxic mold remediation before any repairs can be made. Before any reconstruction and restoration can take place. Before any painter can take a brush, roller or spray gun and apply a beautiful new finish to any surface.

Both tornadoes and hurricanes can leave behind irreparable damages,
irreplaceable losses, and unforgettable memories.

Stay storm safe and smart. And, thanks for visiting “Painting with Bob.”

Copyright 2017. Robert D. Hajtovik. All rights reserved.


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