DIY Painting Tips

How to Paint With a Roller

When you need to paint large ceiling or wall expanses, using a paint roller is usually the best route to a quick and even finish. The tools are inexpensive, and set-up and cleaning are easier than with other methods, especially with spray painting. Painting with a roller is a time-tested method that has worked and will continue to work as the preferred method of painting large spaces. But roller-painting is not as simple as dipping a roller cover in a paint tray and spreading the paint. Paint professionals and many do-it-yourselfers have methods that ensure that the job will go as quickly and inexpensively as possible, with smooth, flawless results.

Dry Your Brush

If you are going to reuse a brush that has just been cleaned with water, blow it dry with a hair dryer first. Any residual water in the bristles will dilute the paint on the brush, causing it to run down the handle when painting. If the brush has just been cleaned with mineral spirits, dry the bristles as well as possible with paper towels before starting to paint, to prevent paint running down the handle. Spread the paper towel out to dry before disposing.

Getting A Cleaner Edge

If using masking tape to protect a surface (except carpet) when painting, remove the tape as soon as you can. You will get a cleaner “edge” and there is less chance the tape will bond to the surface it is protecting and become difficult to remove. Masking tape comes in many grades and qualities so talk to your paint supplier to make sure you get the right tape for the job you are doing.

Don’t let your paint dry out

A half-empty can of paint will dry out. Drop golf balls into the paint can to fill the air space, or place plastic wrap under the lid, seal it tightly and store the paint upside down.

Use the right primer

If you’re painting new drywall, use a water-based primer to hide imperfections and provide an even base before applying color. If you’re painting paneling, water-damaged or smoke-saturated walls, opt for an oil-based primer.

Avoid lap marks

 To avoid stripes caused by rolling over paint that’s already starting to dry, keep a wet edge by painting the full height of the wall and then moving over slightly so you can overlap the last stroke with the next.

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