Category Archives: general contractor

Prep Your Home or Business for the Upcoming Hurricane Season

hurricane-preparation-blog

Irma—the costliest hurricane in Florida history—is still fresh in the minds of many Southwest Florida residents, it’s time to look to the future as another hurricane season is set to begin on June 1. Initial forecasts are calling for another active season, with Colorado State University’s Department of Atmospheric Science Tropical Meteorology Program predicting 14 named storms, seven hurricanes, and three major hurricanes of Category 3 or greater strength.

We can’t stop Mother Nature, but homeowners and business operators can take pre-storm season measures that may help mitigate potential damages caused by any tropical storms that hit our state in the months to come.

Water Intrusion and Wind: Biggest Pre-Storm Season Factors to Consider

Wind damage from hurricanes generally causes the most storm-related damage, but water and flood damage represents the most costly damage. That said, they generally cause damage in conjunction with each other during tropical storms. While outright flooding of your premises or business can be catastrophic, even water intrusion that seeps into your home or business due to heavy rain and wind can start causing damage at the foundation or between interior and exterior walls. Heavy winds can rip out or damage asphalt shingles, shake, clay tiles and even metal roofing, allowing subsequent rainfall to leak directly into your home or business.

The walls themselves are also at risk from wind-driven water intrusion, especially in those areas where the walls meet window casings, pipes, joints, roofing, foundations or any place that needs caulking. Stucco and wood walls should also have a decent coat of paint or other sealant, as storm driven water can seep into gaps or cracks and ultimately lead to dry rot in wood or de-lamination in stucco.

What to Inspect for Hurricane Season Preparation

At a minimum, homeowners and business operators should inspect the following elements of their homes and commercial buildings:

  • • Roof—start at the top by conducting a full inspection of your roof no matter what the roofing material. Check to make sure that there are no loose shingles or tiles, or, if a metal roof, loose fasteners. Also check the condition of flashing and any sealants around stacks, skylights and chimneys.
  • • Gutters—clean your gutters and make sure that there is no debris clogging the down spouts.
  • • Walls—Whether wood, stucco or concrete, check the condition of your paint or sealant. If you see peeling, bubbling or cracking on wooden walls, you may want to consider repainting those damaged areas, or consider a complete paint job if the damage is extensive. Stucco and concrete can typically show some signs of cracking, but if large or extensive, such areas may need patching and sealing.
  • •Windows and doors—inspect windows and doors to make sure they properly seal and replace any worn out weather stripping.
  • • Caulking—old, cracked worn out caulking should be removed and replaced with high quality urethane caulk.

FCI Painting Has Expertise with Pre-Storm Mitigation

FCI Painting offers a slate of after-storm clean-up and repair services, however this Naples, Florida-based business also provides a full range of pre-storm season measures designed to protect your home from the ravages of nature. We conduct intrusion inspections of homes and businesses, and, as a fully licensed contractor with more than 20 years of dedicated service in southwest Florida, can resolve most issues that could prove compromising in the event of a tropical storm. To learn how FCI Painting can help you prepare your home or business for the coming hurricane season, contact us today online, or give us a call at (239) 435-1001.

Commercial Painting Far More Complex Than Residential

Commercial Painting in Naples Florida
If asked to name the biggest difference between commercial and residential painting jobs, most people would likely respond with “scope of the project.” And while most commercial painting projects tend to be larger than residential jobs, there are numerous other factors that also set the two apart.

Naturally, project scope drives some of these differentiating factors. For example, the bigger commercial paint project generally drives the need for a much larger painting crew, along with more hands-on management. To varying degrees, it can also necessitate the need for more specialized equipment.

Such factors are also driven by the issue of time, as commercial businesses generally want to limit disruptions to their business as much as possible. Thus, a commercial paint job needs to proceed as quickly as possible and paint crews, unlike for most residential jobs, need to be able to work at all hours and on weekends, when called for.

In short, four men with paint, brushes, rollers and ladders might be sufficient for a two-story residential paint job but will certainly not work effectively for a 50,000-square-foot shopping plaza. The latter will undoubtedly need a much larger crew, along with commercial grade painting equipment such as gas-powered airless sprayers that can apply paint at up to two gallons per minute; specialized spray tips and extension wands; and scaffolding and/or boom or scissor lifts for the exterior work.

Project Preparation Needs Mark Another Key Difference

The prep work needed in advance of a commercial painting project presents much more of a challenge than prepping for a residential job. Naturally, building size and timing issues play a significant role in the prep work, as both need to be considered in determining what gets painted and when, in conjunction with figuring out how to conduct the overall job with the least disruption possible.

But numerous other issues also need to be addressed prior to any first application of paint. Commercial buildings are often constructed from different materials than residential buildings and have a greater variety in the surfaces that might need painting. This can necessitate the consideration of special industrial-strength paints and coatings and require more specialized surface preparation. Prep work also involves determinations about furniture/equipment moving; compromised surface material repair or replacement; pre-paint treatment by cleaning, power washing or sand blasting; floor coatings; faux-finishing; and electrostatic painting.

Businesses Should Also Account for Bureaucratic Considerations

While anyone with some paint and a brush can paint a residence, businesses need to take greater account of city, county and state regulations. Commercial properties generally represent more risk, and thus are subject to more rules and regulations designed to protect the public and mitigate risk. In general, this means that businesses should hire commercial painting companies that:

  • have a general contracting license
  • are fully insured
  • operate heavy machinery that has been OSHA certified
  • have a proven record of following OSHA safety requirements

With more than 20 years of commercial painting experience, FCI Painting has extensive experience painting stores, restaurants, cafes, malls, office buildings, warehouses, garages, and all types of commercial structures built in Naples, Florida. As a fully insured and licensed contractor, FCI painting is adept at helping existing business owners refurbish their facilities, and coordinates closely with contractors and other craftsman in the development of new commercial buildings. To learn more about how FCI Painting can help you with your commercial building painting needs, contact us today, or give us a call at (239) 435-1001.

Let FCI Painting Help You Guide Commercial Paint Color Choice

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Even though building codes in southwest Florida narrow the range of possible paint colors business owners can apply to their commercial buildings, choosing perfect paint color combinations often still proves to be a challenge. However, that challenge has been mitigated by technologies that make it easier to view potential paint color schemes. No longer do you have to go through reams of handheld color charts, fan decks, strips and/or wheels to find the perfect color combination for your commercial building. It’s far easier to compare and contrast potential color schemes with digital color palette tools and apps.

Naples, Florida-based FCI painting offers digital color scheming to its commercial customers. Whether a large office building, warehouse, shopping mall, retail store or detailed work covering roofs, decking or a specific component of your commercial space, FCI Painting can provide you with digital renditions of potential color schemes.

This technology helps business owners nail down potential color combinations by viewing photographic renditions of proposed paint colors on their actual buildings. It helps better coordinate color combinations between the primary exterior wall color and its trim and roof colors. It also allows quick and easy comparisons with the colors of nearby buildings to ensure compatibility with surrounding buildings, as required by building codes. This digital preview also helps ensure that the proposed color schemes don’t clash with existing signage coloring.

FCI Painting Also Provides On-Site Color Previews

Digital color preview tools are by no means perfect. Chosen colors may present different hues in varying light. What appears to be a perfect shade of subtle coral on a sunny day may come across as orange on a cloudy day. Or, what may look like the perfect pastel blue on a cloudy day may come across more as a washed-out gray on a bright, sunshine-filled day.

Additionally, chosen color presentations may differ depending upon the clarity of the screen viewed on, or, if printed out, the quality of the digital printer. Colors viewed on a desktop screen will likely differ to some degree from what is seen on a mobile device. Likewise, the printed copy will likely differ somewhat from what is seen on the screen.

For this reason, FCI Painting also offers on-site color previews, in which the company will paint a small portion of the building in the chosen color scheme to ensure that it meets the client’s desires. This allows the client to more effectively gauge the chosen color scheme and compare it in the different natural lighting that shifts during the course of the day. FCI Painting will also spot paint with additional color schemes should the client wish to compare and contrast different potential color schemes.

Consult With Your Experienced Commercial Building Painting Company

With more than 20 years of commercial painting experience, Naples, Florida-based FCI Painting has extensive experience helping business owners surmount the challenge of picking the perfect colors for their commercial buildings. FCI painting knows the limitations of digital paint color previewing and has a keen grasp of which paint color schemes are the most aesthetically pleasing for our area. To learn more about how FCI Painting can help you with all of your commercial building painting needs, contact us today, or give us a call at (239) 435-1001.

Commercial Building Painting Tips for SW Florida

Commercial Building Painting Tips

Whether to refresh the look of existing facilities, or as the final step in new construction, painting the exterior of commercial buildings can present various challenges to business owners. Along with picking the right color for your commercial building, you need to make sure that you’ve picked the correct type of paint appropriate for the surface being painted. You also want to be sure that you hire the right painting company for the job—one with years of commercial painting experience in the region.

Area Building Codes Influence Commercial Building Color Choice

In southwest Florida in general, and Naples, Florida specifically, the overarching style of the area combined with building codes generally encourages commercial building paint color schemes of pastel hues. The Naples building code dictates that colors of commercial building exteriors and trim “shall be compatible with surrounding buildings,” and prohibits “exterior color schemes that attract undue attention,” or “cause the building to appear as a sign.”
If you are refreshing the paint of an existing building, it is likely already up to code, and you will probably want to utilize the same, or similar, color scheme. If not, or if you are painting a newly constructed building, your first step would probably consist of considering the colors of the surrounding commercial buildings. Their color schemes can serve as a template with which to determine which potential hues on your building would not only complement the entire area, but help your building stand out, as well. In previewing this virtual template, don’t forget to factor in any ancillary features such as parking areas, sidewalks and greenery.

Building Materials Also Dictate Painting Decisions

Regional climate, traditional building practices, and building codes have long influenced materials used for commercial building construction in southwest Florida, with stucco proving to be a leading material for outside walls. If you are painting a newly constructed building with a stucco facade, you will want to wait at least 14 days for the stucco to fully cure and harden before sealing it with paint. The use of a hot stucco primer brings the waiting period down to seven days, or whenever the acceptable pH level is reached. The type of stucco texture—smooth or rough—will dictate how much paint you use, and perhaps whether to use a spray or roller system for its application.

Synthetic Stucco Can (and should) Be Painted

Synthetic stucco (exterior insulation finishing system, and “EIFS,” for short) already comes in a wide variety of hues, and most people believe that it was designed to be paint-free; however, synthetic stucco can be painted, and, with correct surface preparation and the right kind of paint, can add years of life to the surface. The most critical factor in painting synthetic stucco is ensuring that any interior moisture can escape, especially in buildings where “drainable” EIFS has been used.

Other Commercial Building Paint Considerations

Metals, such as steel and aluminum, are also used extensively in southwest Florida commercial building construction, with steel and other metals proving popular with doors, and aluminum a mainstay in the region’s commercial roofing. While such materials are exceptionally durable, southwest Florida’s climate can take a toll on just about every material used for commercial building construction, and the right kind of paint applied correctly can add years of life to metal roofs and doors.

Consult With an Experienced Commercial Building Painting Company

An experienced painting company can help you with whatever challenge you might face in painting your southwest Florida commercial building. They know the codes, understand the climate’s effects on building material surfaces, and should be able to determine the right type of paint for the surface needing painting.
With more than 20 years of commercial painting experience, FCI Painting has extensive experience painting all of the materials used in the construction of stores, restaurants, cafes, malls, office buildings, warehouses, garages, and every commercial structure built in Naples, Florida. FCI painting is adept at helping existing business owners refurbish their facilities, and coordinates closely with contractors and other craftsman in the development of new commercial buildings. To learn more about how FCI Painting can help you with your commercial building painting needs, contact us today, or give us a call at (239) 435-1001.

FCI Painting Offers Expert Drywall Repair and Texturing Services

Expert Drywall Repair and Texturing Services

As residents of Naples and southwest Florida continue to clean up and repair the obvious damages wrought by Hurricane Irma, homeowners and businesses should assess their buildings for less evident damage. Among this less distinct damage is the potential impact to drywall from water intrusion. The drywall that makes up interior walls in homes and buildings that experienced flooding is likely compromised, as it sopped up floodwaters from the floor, while leaking roofs allowed water intrusion into ceiling drywall. Additionally, wind-blown rainwater may have penetrated outside walls and soaked into the drywall on the exterior side.

Not only can water damaged drywall be unsightly, but its integrity can be compromised to the point of collapse. At the least, untreated water-damaged drywall can lead to the growth of dangerous mold and mildew, usually within 24 to 48 hours of water intrusion. Not only is this mold and mildew possibly hazardous to your health, but it slowly continues to break down the gypsum of your drywall.

Let FCI Painting Inspect and Repair Your Drywall

If you know or suspect that the drywall in your home or building has been compromised by water intrusion, FCI Painting can conduct a comprehensive inspection to determine the extent of potential damage, and recommend the appropriate level of drywall repair. FCI Painting’s drywall repair specialists will remove and replace damaged sections of drywall to ensure the integrity of your interior walls and ceiling and eliminate the threat from mold and mildew. FCI Painting can follow-up its drywall services with a fast and efficient paint job that will make you forget that the walls and ceilings were ever damaged.

Don’t Forget to Account for Drywall Texture

Whether you have an existing drywall texture that you would like to replicate, or would like to upscale the look of your interior walls and ceilings, FCI Painting’s drywall specialists are experts in producing the full range of drywall textures. Drywall textures can be applied by hand or by compressed-air-assisted hopper, with a variety of different textures delivered by both methods. Our specialists use a variety of tools to produce the desired texture in the compounds used, whether drywall mud, joint compound or plaster. While the hawk and trowel are the most utilized tools, special brushes, detailing knives, paint rollers and other instruments can also be used for specialty texturing.

Different textures can be achieved with the compressed air hopper by using different sized and shaped spray gun nozzles. The amount of air pressure used can also influence the texture, as can any aggregate added to the compound used.

Popular Drywall Textures

Among the more popular drywall textures are:

  • Smooth Finish: This classy finish is used in many high-end homes, and is the most suitable finish for high-end matte and eggshell paints. A smooth drywall finish is achieved by applying plaster compound with a drywall knife and then using a pole sander to achieve the fine, smooth surface.
  • Skip Trowel: This elegant texture has a variety of subtle styles and looks, but most often is used to add a Mediterranean flair to walls and ceilings. The texture is achieved by utilizing a light stroke with a trowel on a joint compound mixed with a little water, and sometimes, some sand.
  • Knockdown: As with the Skip Trowel texture, this texture has a variety of subtle styles and looks, but the texture consists of unique shapes that emerge from the wall. Applied with an air assisted hopper using an aggregate material, the knockdown texture provides a classy look, but is also perfect for hiding any imperfections that otherwise can’t be repaired.
  • Swirl: This smoother looking finish includes swirls in compound created by making short swirl motions with the trowel or specialty brushes and knives.
  • Spray Sand: Known as a more cost-efficient texturing process, this compressed-air application gives the surface small sand-like bumps. Given the right coat of paint and this texture can look refined and exotic.

If you need drywall repairs due to storm damage, or as just part of overall renovations, contact FCI Painting online, or by calling (239) 435-1001, to see what our drywall specialists can do to improve the look of your interior walls and ceilings.

Finding the Right Contractor to Help With Hurricane Clean Up and Repairs

Hurricane Irma Home Damage Repairs

Hurricane Irma roared through Naples and Southwest Florida on Sunday with sustained winds topping 110 m.p.h., gusts reaching 142 m.p.h., and serious flooding caused by rain and a storm surge that reportedly reached up to seven feet. While the hurricane initially hit mainland Florida as a powerful Category 3 storm, it was soon downgraded to a Category 2 storm, and reports from around the region suggest that overall damage is not as devastating as feared.

Still, damage is widespread and all area homeowners and businesses face extensive cleanup, at a minimum, with many also likely needing assorted repairs, and some requiring extensive renovations. Assessment and cleanup began as soon as the winds started to subside, and when those who evacuated return to their homes and businesses, the entire region will be engaged in full-scale cleanup and repair work…for weeks and months to come.

Beware of Scammers Posing as Contractors

Communities generally pull together during times of crisis to help each other out, but, unfortunately, some unscrupulous people use disasters to take advantage of people in need. “Charity” scams are already underway across the country, with con artists working the phone lines and Internet to encourage donations to fake charities for hurricane relief. “Repair” scammers are already roaming our streets and going door-to-door to encourage people to pre-pay for repair work that will never be done, or offer repair services that they are unqualified to fulfill, and will likely botch. Likewise there will be some contractors from away looking to gouge unwitting victims of storm damage with repair costs far above what should be considered reasonable for the situation.

Most Construction Work Requires a License

Not to say that everyone offering repair services during this difficult time is a con artist, but there are some measures you can take to ensure that repairs and cleanup of your property are professionally conducted at a reasonable cost for the circumstances. When meeting with a “contractor,” or other people offering storm remediation services, perhaps the most worthwhile means of establishing their bona fides is by asking to see their contractor’s license. The state of Florida requires that many elements of construction—including painting—be conducted by a licensed contractor. In fact, construction work of most any kind valued in excess of $1,000 must be conducted by a licensed contractor. In Florida, a “registered” contractor’s license is valid for work locally, while a “certified” contractor’s license is applicable statewide.

Other measures you should take to assess and hire potential workers to repair your storm damages include:

  • Try to hire known contractors, whether by first-hand knowledge or reputation.
  • Ask to see proof of insurance.
  • Ask for references and follow through by checking them out.
  • Make sure all details—scope of work, materials, labor costs—of the job are put down in a written contract.
  • Do not pay in cash and do not agree to pay a significant amount advance.
  • Also be wary of those offering repair work under the guise of your insurance—do not sign any Assignment of Benefits (AOB) form and contact your insurance company before signing any related agreements.

FCI Painting is offering a range of after-storm clean up and repair services along with its full slate of painting and pressure washing services to homeowners and business in Florida’s Collier and Lee Counties who have been affected by Hurricane Irma. As a fully licensed Florida State Certified General (CGC) contractor with more than 20 years of dedicated service in southwest Florida, FCI Painting has the experience, manpower and tools to get your business or home back in shape.

To learn how FCI Painting can help you resolve storm damage and cleanup, contact us today online, or give us a call at (239) 435-1001.

Hire an Experienced Commercial Painting Company

commercial-painting-contractor

Commercial painting contracts represent a responsibility to the contractor or hiring company to abide by city, county and state regulations. These rules and regulations are in place to protect all parties concerned. A busy commercial property means an increase in risk and therefore should only allow properly licensed and experienced contractors to get the work done safely and according to commercial standards.

What is the difference between “just a painter” and a professional commercial painter? The answer is equipment experience, safety training, licensing and insurance and so much more.

License & Insurance

The state of Florida does not offer a license specially for Painting Contracting, however you will find that most reputable commercial painting companies will have a licensee who is state certified as a General Contractor, as an extra measure of commitment to excellence. Even with a state CGC license, most often individual cities or counties will require an extra license to be filed if work is to be performed within its boundaries. All necessary licensing should be provided prior to job commencement.

Risk mitigation begins with the obtaining the proper insurance. Both worker’s compensation and general liability are mandatory in the state of Florida for any type of contracting work. Individual commercial projects may also require specific limits or to be listed as additionally insured depending on that particular project requirements.

Equipment & Safety

A commercial painting contractor must be prepared to make a large investment in machinery & equipment when taking on a larger commercial project. Along with this investment in capital comes an investment in training in all aspects of equipment operation to ensure personal & job safety. Safety is paramount on larger commercial projects, which means all equipment needs to be operated within OSHA safety Requirements.

The types of equipment you might see on a commercial painting project include but are not limited to:

  • Gas powered airless sprayers capable of producing and applying paint at 2 gallons per minute (GPM). Gas powered machines are more suitable as power may not be readily available.
  • Large spray tips and extension wands are a valuable part of the equipment inventory.
  • Commercial painters also require cleaning equipment like large gas powered pressure cleaners an ideal machine will produce up to 4000psi and 4 GPM of water and chemicals to properly prepare the surfaces for the paint application.
  • Lift equipment including scissor lifts and boom lifts as a majority of the work is to be completed at high elevations.

Hire a Licensed and Insured Commercial Painting Contractor

Protect your commercial property or project by hiring an expert team of experienced commercial painters. FCI Painting is a licensed and insured painting contractor located in Naples, Florida. Call (239) 435-1001 for an estimate today. We are dedicated to customer satisfaction!