Painting a room is one of the easiest and fastest ways to freshen up a home, but it can often seem like an intimidating process. These tips from professional painters will help homeowners paint any sized room with amazing results.
1. Sand and Clean Walls First
If walls are greasy or dirty, the paint won’t stick. Wash down walls with warm, soapy water or consider a degreaser if there’s a lot of build up. For example, build ups are common in areas above a stove. Also, make sure to fix any cracks or holes with putty or spackling paste. To go an extra step and get a crisp, like-new appearance, sand the walls thoroughly including corners and trim lines.
2. Protect the Non-Painted Areas
Typically all painters know to use drop cloths and tape off the areas they don’t want to color, but they might not know what equipment to use. Homeowners should not use an old bed sheet as a drop cloth as it’s too thin and will allow paint to seep through to the floor beneath. They should also not use a plastic tarp since it doesn’t absorb the paint and may lead to it being tracked throughout the house. If a tape is going to be involved, it’s important always to use blue painters’ tape and press it down with a scraper for a smooth line. Masking tape shouldn’t be used as it often rips paint away when removed.
3. Avoid Getting Paint on the Ceiling
When painting near a textured ceiling, it can be hard not to get color on the small, protruding bumps. One secret of professionals is to use a screwdriver to scrape a thin groove into the textured surface just along the edge of the wall. This is unnoticeable and allows the paintbrush to glide along the wall without getting color on the ceiling.
4. Use the Right Primer
Most professionals recommend an alcohol or alkyd based primer because they’re thick and will cover the walls thoroughly. Make sure to prime the whole area, as spots will show through if they’re primed unevenly. Also, consider a tinted primer. This will create a more opaque base and will help the final paint color appear more vibrant. It’s also worth the extra expense to buy a quality primer, as they tend to last longer.
5. Load up the Brush
Many people first dip the brush then wipe it on the side of the bucket, but professional painters say not to do this. Instead, load up the brush and knock it gently to remove any of the big drips. This way the color goes on in a thick, even coat. A good brush is another worthwhile investment to ensure a quality job.
6. Use a Bucket
A bucket with a grid is less messy and easier to move than a roller pan. They can also hold a lot more paint. In addition, painters often like to mix two or three cans together in a large bucket, also called boxing, because color can differ between cans. This creates a more cohesive and even look when the job is finished.