Brush up on painting, the easiest, most economical way to change your home's look and feel, both inside and out. Here are 5 tips to a job well done.
1. It's smart to try out colors before painting. New sample sizes are available from most every company. Use SMALL WALL and paint your sample. Place it on your walls in varying places to see how it looks. Test decorative finishes the same way.
2. When in doubt, use the lighter color. You've chosen a color from a paint card. In the store, the lighting is generous. Even taking it outdoors makes it seem OK. Inside a small space with a lower ceiling, it can be oppressive. Going lighter will resolve many problems.
3. The rightpaint brush or rolleris as critical to a good paint job as quality paint. For oil-base paint, China bristle paint brushes, which leave few brush marks, are a good choice, but the bristles might break when used on rough surfaces. For acrylics and high-qualitylatexpaints, nylon paint brushes are best. Nylon-polyester blends and 100-percent-polyester brushes work with any paint. Expect to spend at least $9 for a quality 3-inch paint brush.For the best paint application, select a roller cover with the appropriate nap size. In general, the rougher the surface, the longer the nap required.
4. To buy the right amount of paint, use this formula: Add up the widths of the walls, then multiply that figure by the room's ceiling height and divide by 350 (the typical square footage one gallon covers). The result is roughly the number of gallons of paint you need. The formula doesn't account for windows and doors, so you should have plenty of paint for touch-ups. If you use a sprayer, a gallon covers about 250 square feet.
5. Most paint failures come from poor surface preparation. Ensure a long-lasting paint job by taking time to assess the condition of your home and then washing, scraping, sanding, caulking, and treating stains as necessary. Use primer to cover dark spots, existing paint colors, and to cover areas you've repaired. A fix now can save multiple re-paints later. Tape and mask trims, windows and more. You'll be happy that painting goes faster and cleanup is minimized.