Hubby paints a lot. A whole lot. Between the rentals, our house and our condo, he’s honestly done months worth of painting in the last 3-4 years. Hubby also likes to find new do-dads that make a job easier. His electronic collection, tool collection, and home improvement collection is quite extensive. I want to stress that Hubby is not a professional painter, so these tips are really just for the DIYer. These are by no means his only tips, just some of the ones he utilizes most often.
The preparation is key! Don’t skip on prep time. And remember, there is only so much you can do when the last paint job was lousy and you are painting on top of that.
10 Easy Paint Tips – For A Fabulous Paint Job
• Never buy the cheapest quality-line of a specific brand of paint unless you want to repaint again soon. Every major brand has at least three grades of paint (different than the sheen), so try not to buy the bottom of the barrel from your chosen paint manufacturer. Generally try not to pay under $20 a gallon retail unless you really understand what you are buying at that bargain basement price.
• A wall primer is a great way to prepare your walls for painting, especially if you are changing sheens. You can have your primer tinted to match your paint color, which really helps to cut down on the coats of paint you must apply to your walls. Buy the correct sheen for the job but consider your family’s lifestyle when purchasing paint. While flat paint is very forgiving when you paint a wall, and paints with a sheen will show non-flat-patches and bad wall-tape jobs, if you have small children and expect to be washing finger prints and dirt off the walls, you may want to choose a satin or eggshell (or even semi-gloss!) for hallways, family rooms and bedrooms. Heck we don’t have small children and there is not one wall in our house (or condo) that doesn’t have at least an eggshell/satin finish on the walls. I just make sure Hubby does a great job patching before he starts painting.
• Wash your walls before you paint. TSP is the perfect solution to use when wall washing prior to painting. You will remove dust, dirt and stains allowing the paint to adhere better. Follow the manufacturer’s directions for how much TSP to add to your bucket of water. Make sure you have a clean bucket of water and sponge near at hand to immediately rinse the walls after washing. Allow to dry thoroughly before painting.
• Do drywall repairs before you paint. Make sure those repairs are smooth and flush with the wall, trim, etc. Remove all hardware, light switch plates, outlet covers, vents, grills and more. Don’t paint over the hinge area of a door regardless of how tempting it is to do so. You want to make sure the door goes back into those hinge cutouts, and as paint coats accumulate eventually you won’t be able to fit the hinges flush and you’ll end up digging the paint out of those jig-cuts.
• Tape off. Period. Unless you are a professional (or my grandmother – wow that woman had a steady hand!) tape off between the floor and baseboards, the windows, trim, etc. And remember you want everything left in the room covered with a cloth, plastic or a tarp to protect against drips, runs and splatters.
And that includes ceiling fans, light fixtures, smoke alarms (if hard wired, otherwise take it down), sprinklers, and anything else you can’t remove before you begin painting. Hubby drapes a cheap, lightweight plastic over ceiling fans, first cutting a slip in it to make room for the housing. He then tapes the top of the fan housing with frog tape, and draped the cheap, lightweight plastic over the fan blades to cover them completely.
• Prep your roller by de-fuzzing it! There is a lot of residue on a new paint roller, and these bits of fiber will end up on your walls if not removed first. Take a second to run your new paint roller over a large piece of tape, rolling one end of the roller to the other end, 2-3 times before you paint. You will be glad you did!
• Pour spout with a lid and pouring spout all in one. It makes pouring your paint clean, and it becomes a cover when you are done. To clean, you just peel the paint of the back. For $3, this Shur-Line Paint Can Lid and Spout is one of Hubby’s cheapest, and most favorite, painting tools.
• A 3″ roller with a 1/4″ nap works out great for baseboards, and for edging (cutting in) 3 1/2″ with 1/2″ nap works great. Hubby loves these rollers because it saves him a lot of time versus using a brush, and the rollers don’t produce brush strokes. Touch-ups are done with a brush, however.
• Spray paint the tops of exposed screws of vent covers or grills to match the color of the cover or grill itself. It is the little things that complete a room. Just pop the screws into a piece of scrap cardboard, and give them an even coat of spray paint.
• If you haven’t finished the job and will continue the next day, wrap your wet roller with a plastic bag, and tie off. It will still be paint-wet in the morning. If you wash it out, it will still be water-wet the next morning (unless you live in a very hot and dry climate), and can make a mess.
Repainting is no fun, so Hubby takes a lot of time with prep work. These are just 10 of the easy paint tips Hubby employees to get the job done right the first time saving him time, and money, in the long run!
What paint tips do you have to share?
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