Properly preparing a room for painting can make or break your day. Taking the right steps will ensure that the paint job looks professional and doesn’t need to be redone in a year or two. Here’s everything you need to know to prepare your interior walls for a spectacular paint job.
Clear the Space
Clearing the room of any furniture and decorations protects them from being damaged. It also makes it easier to move around the room, not worrying about knocking anything over. For the furniture pieces you can’t move, like large sectionals or heavy coffee tables, get them out of the way by pushing them to the center of the room. Cover them with plastic sheeting or several garbage bags to protect them against possible paint splatter.
Clean the room thoroughly, whether that means vacuuming or mopping the floors or wiping down the baseboards with a damp cloth. Remove any dust or cobwebs, as it’s easier to work in a clean space without having to worry about cleaning up halfway through your paint job. Nothing’s more annoying than having to stop painting because there’s a mess in your way.
Protect Your Floor
Place old newspaper or plastic wrap across your floors, taping them to the edges of the room. This will protect your floors from paint damage.
Patch Any Holes
Using spackle that can be found in any home department or hardware store, fill all holes, small dents or cracks in your wall. Do this the day before you plan to start painting to ensure that it’s completely dry. Once dry, sand down the surface to make sure it’s flush with the rest of the wall.
Wipe Down the Walls
Clean your walls and any other surface that will be painted with mild soap and warm water. You don’t need much soap, only a few drops in a large bucket will do. This is important, especially if you’re painting a bathroom or kitchen, where residue commonly builds up. Using a rag or sponge will work, and make sure to rinse the walls with plain water to get rid of any soap residue.
Priming your walls is probably one of the most important steps in preparing to successfully paint your walls. If your painted walls are low gloss or water-based, then it’s safe to paint right over it, without a primer. However, if your walls are covered in oil-based paint, or are glossy to a semi-glossy surface, then you need to apply a primer. Primarily if you’ve spackled parts of your wall, your better off priming the whole thing.
Cut All the Edges
Cut in (taking a smaller brush to paint the edges of the ceiling or baseboard) about an inch from the edges of the wall with a matching color. This keeps the old color from showing through if your taped lines don’t match up completely.
Use Painter’s Tape
Use painter’s tape to tape off anything that shouldn’t be painted. This includes adjacent walls that aren’t being painted, woodwork, light switches and other surfaces you want to protect. Lightly rub the edge of the side of the tape that’s going to be painted to get rid of air bubbles and ensure a sharp line is achieved.
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