We're excited to have the boom lift here so that we can more easily and safely paint the upper level of our house. You may recall that last year, after many days of painting, I fell off the ladder while trying to paint a portion of the second story; the ladder slid away from the house and I came crashing down, paint bucket flying and globs of yellow paint splattering all over the place. With a badly bruised leg and hip, and my arm and back wrenched out of whack, I decided to put away my paint brush and work with my husband to come up with a better plan. We finally realized that renting a boom lift was the only reasonably safe way for us to accomplish this task. The rainy fall season was approaching at that time, and so we had to put off the task until now.
We rented a Genie TZ-50 trailer-mounted articulating boom lift from Sunbelt Rentals. It has outriggers that come down to help make it very stable. There's a power plug in the bucket so you can run a sander easily without having to deal with dragging an extension cord around. The lift is battery powered and the batteries recharge with a gas motor. It can go up 50 feet and out as much as 30 feet. There are controls in the bucket that allow for moving up, down, forward, backward and side-to-side. Our biggest challenge so far in operating it is avoiding trees and power lines.
After getting the boom lift positioned and leveled, my husband and I spent five hours together inside the bucket this morning, working diligently to scrape, sand, and paint primer on the west side of the house, with hopes of finishing the primer before the sun reached that side. The sun was just peeking over the top of the house when we wearily climbed out of the bucket. In the photo above, you can see our progress. No more huge chunks of peeling gray paint on this side! We removed the old shutters that surrounded the upper window, as well, and cleaned the outside of the windows.
Although the sun is now low in the sky and the shade has returned, we realized we're too tired to continue working on the project tonight. It was a long, hot and tiring day due to the heat wave that's affecting the entire region. Painting wasn’t our only task today as we still have farm chores. To avoid heat exhaustion, we're going to wait until tomorrow morning to continue. There's still a lot of house left to paint. Next up is getting a couple coats of yellow paint over the primer on the west side of the house, along with painting white trim around the windows and along the roof. Then we'll move the boom lift around to another side of the house and repeat all those steps again. All four sides of the house have areas on the second floor that need to be scraped, sanded, and painted with both primer and yellow topcoat. There is a lot left to do, but we're hoping it will go much smoother this time around.