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Becoming DIY Painting Pro in No Time at All
Most people who are about to begin a big home painting project know at least a few things about how to get the job done right. It’s pretty much common knowledge that you should cover your floors and furniture, for example, and use that painters’ tape that you have in your backpack to mark out a straight edge. But then, some tips and tricks are a little more…obscure. Read on!
Prime, prime, prime
If you’re working with new drywall, water-based primers can hide imperfections and help you start with a nice, even base on which to apply your color. For walls that are water or smoke-damaged, or paneling, use an oil-based primer instead.
Keep the paint wet
An obvious one – of course, you can’t work with dry paint. But then, how to do it is maybe less so. One great technique is to cover the paint with plastic wrap, under the lid, and then seal it tightly. Storing paint upside down also helps, as does filling the empty space where you’ve already used up some of the paint with golf balls. Yes, golf balls! They help keep air away from the paint surface and stop it from drying.
DIY painting pro: stirring solutions
All paint should be stirred before use to ensure even color, as paint can settle in the can, but drilling holes in the stirrer beforehand helps the paint move through the stirrer and does a more thorough job in less time.
Use an air compressor
If you have a portable air compressor, or have a friend who does, using this to paint walls massively reduces the time and effort it takes to do a great job.
Don’t get lapped
A ‘lap mark’ is a stripe in the paint that happens when you roll over paint that has already started to dry. Keep the edge of your work wet by painting the full height of the wall and then moving over. This will let you simply overlap your last stroke with the next.
Don’t wash your brushes
If you’re using latex paint in your project, there’s no reason to wash brushes or rollers if you’re not done by the end of the day. Latex paint dries more slowly, especially at low temperatures, so wrap your tools in plastic bags and pop them into the refrigerator overnight. Just be sure to let them warm up again the next day before you use them.
Heat the painters’ tape
If you’re using older painters’ tape, sometimes, it can be difficult to remove from the roll as the stickiness sticks the tape together. Solve this problem by placing the whole roll in the microwave for 10 seconds to loosen it.
DIY painting pro: Buy a paint pen
Paint pens are fun gadgets that allow you to make small touch-ups when needed. Simply fill the pen with paint, and if marks or scuffs appear, you can simply color them in. The paint stays wet and usable for up to a year after the pen is filled, provided it’s stored properly, but always shake well before use to mix the color.