House painting in the Bay Area seems easy. Open a can of paint, dip a paintbrush in it, and start painting your wall. But if you ask the pros and experienced DIY painters, they will tell you straight that it’s not nearly as easy as it seems. First-time DIY house painters, in particular, tend to overlook the essential steps of painting the surface. It leads to various problems ranging from an uneven paint finish to drips on the floor and uncovered furniture. Many DIY house painters also skip preparing the surface, which leads to adhesion problems from the topcoat.
Consider the following interior painting techniques to avoid such pitfalls and to achieve a smooth and uniform paint finish that will last for many years:
- Clean, repair, and prime the surface – Surface cleanup and preparation are essential to ensure that the paint will adhere well and uniformly to the surface. Clean the walls by dusting them off or washing them and letting them dry. Fix any damage, such as peeling or cracking paint, cracks, and holes by applying a spackling compound. Let the compound dry and add more when necessary—sanding the area with fine-grit sandpaper to get a smooth surface when the compound is completely dried. Clear away any dust with a cloth or sponge.
- Prime the surface to be painted – Make sure to apply the surface with a good quality primer to ensure that the topcoat will adhere well to the surface. It gives a smooth and even finish. If you’re going to paint porous surfaces, such as brick or stucco, a primer will help seal them so they won’t absorb much paint.
- Avoid ugly roller nap marks – When using a paint roller to paint a large, flat wall, if you don’t do it correctly, you will end up with lap marks where you roll over a part of the wall you previously painted. Remember one important thing if you’re painting under warm or dry conditions: latex paints tend to dry and stiffen as quickly as one minute (or even less). To avoid ugly lap roller lap marks, make sure to have a wet edge so that every stroke of your roller overlaps with the areas of the wall you previously painted before the paint starts to dry.
- Paint the trim first, then the ceiling, and finally the walls – If you have worked with professional painters, you may have noticed that they follow the proper order of painting the interiors. They always paint the trim first, next to the ceiling, and, in the end, the walls. They follow this order because it’s easier to tape off the trim than taping off the walls. So, if you’re painting in your home, it would be wise to follow the same pattern to get the best results.
- Mix several cans of paint to get an exact color for the entire room – Even if the paints were mixed at the same time using the same color combination or formula, paint colors could vary from one can to another. To keep the color consistent, mix all paints in a large bucket and mix them thoroughly.
- Make cleaner edges – Even as you use painter’s tape, you still can’t get that perfect edge. When you pull off the tape, some of the fresh paint comes with it. Wait until the paint dries completely, then gently pull the tape off.
- Use canvas or cotton drop cloths – It’s almost impossible to keep the entire floor free from paint drips. But a canvas or cotton drop cloth will do a better job than paper or plastic sheets in protecting the floor (and furniture) from dripping paint. With plastic sheets, the paint remains wet, and you can track every drop of it all around the house. Stepping on a plastic sheet can also cause one to slip. Paper sheets, on the other hand, can be easily blown away by the slightest breeze. They can absorb the paint, but the paint may still leak through, especially with a spill unless they’re particularly thick. Canvas or cotton cloth drops do the best job in absorbing plaint. They also stay in place better and are not slippery as plastic, thus making them safe for ladders. Plus, they’re reusable.
Have any house painting in the Bay Area problems that call for more tips or the expertise of a professional? Custom Painting, Inc. has you covered! Call us at (925) 866-9610 or fill an online form for a free estimate.