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How The Cold Weather Affects Your Exterior Paint

The winter season ranks as the favorite for many! And unlike other homeowners living in California’s coastal cities, homeowners in South Lake Tahoe often get to experience the magical snow for over half a year! Snow is something residents of South Lake Tahoe are used to. On average, South Lake Tahoe averages 142 inches of snow per year — compared to the U.S. average of 28 inches — and attracts ski and snowboard enthusiasts from all over that want to race down the iconic powdered slopes the area has to offer. 

While there is a lot to love about the winter season, if you’re not out enjoying the slopes, you are likely to retreat into your cozy, well-heated home to protect yourself from the elements. The exterior of your home is not so lucky, though. Instead, it stands as your home’s first defense against the damaging effects of Old Man Winter. And make no mistake, snow, ice, and frigid rains and wind can do a number on the most beautiful exterior paint job.

How The Winter Weather Affects Your Exterior Paint

At Artisticrat Painting, we have been one of the leading painting companies in South Lake Tahoe. With years of experience under our belts, our residential painters know a thing or two about how the winter weather conditions can affect your home’s exterior paint. Below, our local painters share some damages to keep an eye out for this winter season.

Peeling, Chipping, Cracking Paint

Exterior paint serves as a type of barrier against moisture and other natural elements. However, considering the usual cycle of freezes and thaws we experience here in South Lake Tahoe, there is a lot of expansion and contraction of moisture that takes place. Extreme temperature fluctuations can cause the paint on the exterior of your home to chip, crack, and it can even make it peel right off. As the wood or other materials under exterior paint expand and contract, the bond between paint and painted surfaces weakens. Paint — especially lower quality exterior paints used by disreputable painting companies — can crack, flake off, or bubble under the stress of rapid, intense temperature fluctuations. 

When exterior paint is chipped, peeled, or cracked, moisture in the form of cold rain, ice, and snow can get in between the paint and your home, even through the tiniest cracks, and add to the damage that is already there.


When it snows in South Lake Tahoe, it really snows! Between November and March alone, the average total snowfall in South Lake Tahoe accumulates to over 300 inches! With all the snow that we experience each year, it is important for homeowners to keep an eye on their exterior paint. When snow accumulates and is touching the exterior of your home it can make your siding appear filthy, especially if it sat there for months before melting or being manually removed. The stains snow can leave behind on your home’s exterior can simply cause it to look dirty, which certainly will not do your curb appeal any favors. 

Changing Tone

The cold temperatures of the winter season can also alter the paint tones of your home’s exterior. In cold weather, dark paint colors can turn white or frosted-looking. While the color is typically restored once the cold weather conditions pass and you give your home a good power-washing, severe winters may leave you more work and effort to get the appearance of your home’s exterior to look normal.

How To Prevent Exterior Paint Problems In The Winter

Since we can’t control how much snow we get each year, the number one antidote to the damaging effects of winter weather on exterior paint is to hire a professional exterior painting company that uses quality, top-of-the-line exterior paint to begin with. The low-quality paint that is often used by disreputable painters likely will not be able to withstand the winter conditions in South Lake Tahoe. 

At Artisticrat Painting, we know how important your home’s exterior paint truly is. That’s why we bring the best materials and a high level of painting know-how to every job, big or small. If you notice that the winter season has left behind cracked or peeling paint, changed the tone of the paint color, or left behind unsightly stains, you can trust the team at Artisticrat Painting to provide you with the solutions you need. We can not only help remove snow stains from your exterior with soft wire brushes, but if needed, we can also provide you with touch-ups to a complete exterior repaint to improve the appearance of your home! If you are interested in learning more about our residential painting services and how you can better protect your home from the winter conditions, contact our team of friendly painting contractors today!

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