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Why Does Paint Peel Off Aluminum Siding?

As a homeowner, it can be heartbreaking to see the paint peeling off your aluminum siding. It seems to worsen with time, and the peeling can cover a larger area in just a short while. You may start wondering why it’s happening – and what you can do to stop it!

As paint experts in Georgia, our responsibility is to answer your question in the best way we can and probably help you keep your home looking great. So why does paint peel off aluminum siding? Let’s find out.

What Causes Paint to Peel?

Aluminum is one of the most versatile metals. Its affordability and availability make it a building material of choice for many homeowners. No wonder aluminum siding has become so popular over the past few years! The uses of aluminum don’t seem to end there. They are used to make doors, windows, gutters, etc.

However, aluminum has one major weakness. You have probably noticed that your neighbor’s wood or brick exterior paint does not seem to peel. You can handle fading. Peeling, on the other hand, can be such a letdown. And paint tends to peel off aluminum. Why? There are various reasons, from nature’s own fury, which you can’t ever conquer, to a poor paint job, which you can rectify. That’s why we always recommend hiring a professional over DIYing, especially if your home has aluminum siding. Here are the key reasons why your painted aluminum might have peeled off.

Not Using the Right Product

Oil-based paint is the best for exterior painting, but how you prepare it matters. Also, modern water-based latex paints can be painted over oil-based paints, but not vice versa. Your aluminum siding was probably painted with water-based paint before the oil-based coat. What probably happened is that the oil-based paint didn’t adhere to the surface, and now the paint is peeling off.

Aluminum might not need a primer, but when the paint is done wrongly, it will only adhere for a few days and start peeling. Another reason why it could be happening is that you applied a coating over another. If, for instance, you had polyurethane or epoxy as the old coating, any paint you put over it will adhere for a short while.

Surface Pollution

Cleaning your aluminum siding before applying the first coat of paint is a must. It helps clear contaminants that might affect the adhesion of the paint. Many times, homeowners assume this critical step and start painting.

There could be dirt or oil, and grease on the surface of the siding. You’ll need to use a suitable detergent and water and allow it to dry before applying the first coat. Water-based coatings, especially, don’t adhere well on surfaces contaminated with oil or grease.

The Smoothness of the Surface

When the surface of your panels is too smooth, it reduces the adhesiveness of the paint. It’s the same way the freeway would have a pile of cars running over each other in every corner if it was smooth. A rough surface increases the mechanical adhesion of the paint to the surface.

To prevent such from happening, sand the surface before painting it. Sanding can be done using sandpaper until the aluminum surface looks shiny and with lines crisscrossing each other on the surface.

Make sure your paint doesn’t peel off aluminum siding by trusting a profession to do the work.

Coating Type

The durability of the paint will be questionable if you use paint that is not compatible with aluminum material. Most oil-based paints are not compatible with aluminum. When you apply an oil-based coat on the aluminum siding, a chemical reaction occurs, and the adhesion bond between the coating and the metal breaks.


Your aluminum siding might not be the issue here, but your paint is. Your paint will wear out with time. It doesn’t matter where you applied it, but paint eventually fades and peels off after serving its purpose dutifully for years. At some point, the paint will lose color and adhesion, and you’ll have no other option but to go shopping for a new coat of paint.

Surface Temperature

How was the weather on the day you painted your aluminum siding? Was it scorching? One of the mistakes homeowners make is painting when the temperatures and humidity are high. When it’s too hot, the solvent in the paint dries off much more quickly and does not allow the paint to cure as it should. Later, the paint peels off.

What Happens if the Paint Peels off?

If it happens, there’s no other solution but to repaint. You can repaint the whole building or the affected section. You’ll need to remove loose paint with a wire brush, sand the surface, and clean the aluminum siding.


The primary cause of paint peeling off from an aluminum siding is a poor painting job. Luckily, that’s a problem with an easy solution! To ensure that it doesn’t happen again, hire an expert from Bravo Painting to take care of your needs. Our professional painters understand your needs better and know all the right things to do to ensure the paint lasts longer than average. Contact us for a quote today.


Contact Bravo Stain Company today to discuss service options that best fit your needs or to schedule your free estimate. We promise to deliver high-quality craftsmanship, professional service, and to deal fairly and honestly with customers.


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Contact Bravo Painting Company today to discuss service options that best fit your needs or to schedule your free estimate. We promise to deliver high-quality craftsmanship, professional service, and to deal fairly and honestly with customers.