Many people attempt to do interior painting projects on their own. Painting a few walls can be worthwhile and satisfying if you have plenty of time and patience. Proper surface preparation is key to good results. Professional painters make it look easy because they have the right tools, supplies, and expertise to achieve high-quality results. Follow these interior painting tips when you decide to roll up your sleeves and tackle a painting project in your home.
8 Interior Painting Tips for DIYers
1. Clean Dirty Surfaces
Paint won't adhere to greasy, grimy, or dusty surfaces. Areas such as walls around a kitchen stove or light switches need a thorough cleaning before fresh paint is applied. Using a degreaser to clean the surface before painting is a great way to help prepare surface areas with a film of grease or build-up of dirt and grime. Degreasers, also called deglossers, cut through grease and grime to allow better paint adhesion. Read the label and follow directions carefully because this stuff is potent. Don't forget to wear rubber gloves and eye protection while using a degreaser.
2. Remove Electric Switch and Outlet Plates
Instead of the time-consuming task of masking off or cutting around all of your electrical outlets and switch plates, remove them using a screwdriver. Painting around each electrical outlet will be much easier and less messy. Tape the screws onto the back of the outlet and switch plates to keep track of screws when it's time to reinstall them. Remember to wait until the new paint has completely dried before reinstalling the plates so they don't adhere to the freshly painted surface.
3. Wash New Paint Roller Covers
Yes, washing brand-new paint-roller covers before using them is a critical step. Pre-washing removes loose bits of fuzz that will come off and stick to your new paint job. Wash the covers with water and a little liquid soap, then run your hands up and down to remove loose fibers. This practice is called "preconditioning." The covers can be used without waiting for them to dry.
4. Load Up Your Paint Brush
Pros use a "load-and-go" approach to painting. They load the bottom 1½ inches of brush bristles with paint and tap both sides against the inside of the can or bucket to remove excess paint before they begin to apply paint. DIYers sometimes dip the brush into the paint, then drag the loaded bristles along the sides of the container, which removes too much of the paint resulting in a brush that's too dry and has too little paint.
5. Learn How to Avoid Runs and Drips
It's easy to cause drips and runs in the corners of a room when a brush is loaded with paint. Applying paint about 1/2 inch away from the cut-in area of corners makes it easier to avoid paint drips and runs. As the brush unloads the paint, move closer and slowly drag the brush along the trim or corner. Allow the bristles to gently push the paint against the cut-in area where the walls meet. This step may need to be repeated several times to get complete coverage. Although it may take a few more minutes, avoiding excess paint collecting along woodwork and corners is best for a more attractive paint finish.
6. Practice Ladder Safety
Maintaining a safe position on ladders is essential to help prevent accidental falls and strains. Most accidents and injuries can be avoided by simply repositioning the ladder when needed. It can be annoying to stop painting to move the ladder as you go. Still, it's not as irritating as falling or tipping over the paint bucket because you were reaching too far. If a significant obstacle is in the way, such as a refrigerator, move it out of your way to eliminate awkward positions.
7. Bag Up Your Paint Roller Cover
When quitting for the day, leave the roller cover on the frame and soak the roller cover in paint. Wrap the roller cover in a plastic bag to create an airtight seal. These steps will keep the roller cover fresh until you return to painting the next day. Remove the roller cover from the frame and throw it away if you can't resume painting for several days. Use a new roller cover when you start to paint again.
8. Clean Your Paint Brushes
High-quality paint brushes are pricey and will last longer if you clean them at the end of each day. If you're using latex paint, clean your brushes by rinsing them with lots of warm soapy water. Use paint thinner to clean brushes when using oil-based paint. Clean the bristles using a brush comb and store them in their original covers or wrap them in a newspaper until you are ready to paint again.
Allow Plenty of Time
Most DIYers are surprised at how long an interior painting project can take to complete on their own. There are numerous steps to a successful paint job which can be time-consuming and physically demanding. Moving and covering furniture, cleaning, repairing small holes in surfaces, and then applying primer and paint can take several days from start to finish. If you plan to paint several large rooms, it can take days or even weeks to complete the project.
Painting can also be a physically demanding and potentially dangerous job. There are many reasons to hire a professional for your interior painting projects. Most professional paint contractors offer free estimates. They can often take care of the job quickly, efficiently, and for far less money than you might anticipate.
Hire a Professional Painting Company
We hope these interior painting tips are helpful. If you'd prefer to hire a professional, call Walla Painting. We're a locally owned business specializing in residential interior painting. Our fully insured, bonded, and skilled painters can handle any project. We are proud to have received Angie's List Super Service Award 10 years in a row for our customer service and detailed workmanship.
Walla Painting serves communities in the Greater Indianapolis area, including Carmel, Westfield, Zionsville, Noblesville, Fishers, McCordsville, Broad Ripple, Lawrence, and Meridian Hills. We specialize in residential interior painting as well as cabinet and trim painting. Contact us online or at (317) 505-0894 to schedule a free estimate.