Painting Tips and Tricks
Painting Articles by our Painting Pros
Since we are professional painters, painting is our passion. We are happy to share some of the valuable painting tips and tricks we have compiled throughout our years of experience. These painting articles contain important information you should know before you get started to ensure the success of your interior or exterior painting project.
Choosing An Interior Paint Finish
There’s more to choosing paint than just deciding on a color. There are several different types of paint finishes and each finish has specific qualities that affect the way the paint reflects light once it is dry. Certain finishes are best for rooms with lots of light, while others are more suitable for basements. Here’s an overview of the most popular paint finishes and their uses:
Gloss – Glossy finishes are highly reflective and very shiny. They are not best choice for interior rooms since any scratches or other surface imperfections will be glaringly obvious. Glossy paints are best used sparingly on areas like trim.
Semi-Gloss – Not as shiny as gloss, semi-gloss paints are easy to clean and are resistant to water. Semi-gloss paints are durable and have a subtle shine that makes it a nice choice for doors, trim and kitchen and bathroom cabinets.
Satin- Resistant to dirt and easy to clean, satin finishes are a good choice for doors, trim, ceilings and high traffic areas like stairways and halls. Do keep in mind that satin finishes have a bit of a shine which can highlight imperfections.
Matte – If you want to hide imperfections, a matte finish is a smart choice. Matte finishes have a velvety texture and can camouflage small cracks and bumps since they don’t reflect light. One drawback of matte finishes is that they can be difficult to clean.
Eggshell – Eggshell is one of the most popular paint finishes. Slightly glossy, it adds warmth to walls and its durability makes it a good choice for kitchens, bathrooms and children’s rooms since it easy to clean.
Paint Color Tips
There are endless choices when it comes to paint colors. Here are some tips and things to consider when choosing the right colors for your interior.
- Look at the color chips you like in daylight to get a true idea of the shade.
- If you are painting your home for resale, choose a neutral shade that will appeal to a majority of potential buyers.
- If you are painting your kitchen, look for a color that works well with your tiles, countertops and cabinets.
- To add drama to your room, paint your ceiling a bold color or consider decorative painting techniques.
- If you have fluorescent lighting, warm paint colors tend to look dull.
- Natural light can significantly affect the appearance of an interior wall. If you have windows facing north, the light will add a blue tint to your walls. Eastern light adds green tones, western adds orange tones and southern light can make colors look washed out.
- Before committing to a color, buy some paint samples. Test them on the various room walls. See how you like the paint in different light and various times of the day.
- Try different shades of a color. Sometimes a slightly lighter or darker shade will be just what you need to create the look you want.
- Follow the 60-30-10 principal. Paint 60% of the room in your dominant color, 30% in a secondary color and 10% an accent color.
- Don’t shy away from grays and browns. With bright accents and accessories, your room will look cozy, warm and inviting.
- Contrary to what many people believe, dark to medium colors can actually make a room look larger.
- If you still are having trouble visualizing how a paint will look after using paint chips and painting small sections, try painting a big sheet of cardboard and leaning it against a wall.
Why Hire A Professional Painter
While it may be tempting to save a few extra dollars by painting the interior or exterior of your home yourself, hiring a pro for the job can be a smart investment. Not only will you save time and hassles, but in the long run, a professional paint job can save you money since professionals know how to avoid costly (and sometimes dangerous) mistakes and understand how to overcome unanticipated problems. Here are just a few reasons why hiring a painting professional makes sense:
Training and Experience – Professional painters are specialists who have years of experience working with all types of surfaces and dealing with all types of situations. Not only will they prepare and paint your interior or exterior correctly and quickly, but they’ll know how to troubleshoot problems and handle unexpected setbacks, such as weather.
Tools and Techniques – Professional painters utilize the highest quality tools and paints to ensure a quality finish. They also know the latest painting techniques.
Safety – With any painting job, safety should be a top concern. Painting requires working on ladders and the correct handling of paints and solvents. Using a professional painter minimizes the risk of accidents and hazards.
Guarantee – Most reputable painters guarantee their services and your satisfaction. If you are unhappy with something, simply let them know and they will fix it. The only guarantee you’ll receive if you do the work yourself is a guarantee of more work and aggravation if you are unhappy.
Preparing For Painting
Painting is more than just slapping on a coat of color. First you have to prepare your surface and surroundings. Proper preparation is key to a successful painting outcome. Here are some tips on what to do before you start painting:
Fill in any cracks, dents, and nail holes – Use a lightweight spackle or wall joint compound, allow to dry, and then sand. You want your surface to be as free of imperfections as possible.
Scrape off peeling paint – If your surface has peeling and flaking paint, scrape off the old paint with a paint scraper. Then sand the surface smooth.
Clean – Make sure your surface is clean so that the paint will stick better. Wipe down your walls with a sponge and dish soap then rinse lightly with water. Let the surface dry completely, preferably overnight.
Prime – Once your surface is clean and sanded, apply primer. Primer optimizes the quality of the painting surface and brings out the paint’s true color.
Cover doorknobs – Protect your doorknobs from excess paint by putting small plastic sandwich bags over them and then taping the edge. Door knobs can also be removed.
Remove wall plates – Remove wall plates and outlet covers and tape off light switches prior to painting.
Use a drop cloth – Protect your floors and any large furniture or objects that could not be moved out of the room.
Be patient – Good preparation takes elbow grease and patience but it all pays off in the long run. A properly prepared surface is the all-important foundation for a long-lasting paint job that looks professional.