Are you getting ready for a big DIY painting job? Painting your house is an ambitious project, and if you don’t have a lot of experience with this type of full-scale interior painting, it can be difficult to know where to start. We’re going to help with some basic preparation tips that will allow you to avoid mistakes and messes while speeding up your painting job.

1. Prepare Your Space and Walls

First, make sure that your walls and other surfaces are ready. Move everything out of the way so you have easy access to the surface. Clean the surface up – make sure there’s no dirt or cobwebs, and scrub away any dark marks or stains. Then fix any problems that the surface may have: This includes sanding down bumps and filling in cracks or holes.

2. Use High-Quality Tools

Don’t get sloppy – prepare by buying the right tools for the job. That includes painting tape, rollers, buckets, protective gear, paint scrapers, and some extra paper towels for cleaning up drips when necessary.

3. Know Your Nap

When you go to buy paint rollers (again, we can’t suggest this enough), you’ll quickly find that there are a couple different options to choose from, especially shorter or longer “naps.” Generally speaking, shorter naps are best for smooth interior spaces. Use longer naps if you plan on painting rougher surface, like un-sanded wood.

4. Protect Your Furniture

Assume that paint will get everywhere during your project, including the places you don’t want it to! Get some cheap plastic sheets or blankets and cover your furniture and tables. Don’t forget to cover the TV as well!

5. Remove Light Switches and Outlet Covers

Don’t forget this critical step! Don’t try to paint around these parts. They’re generally too slim to paint around them effectively, even with finer brushes. If you get a screwdriver and take them off, you will be able to very quickly paint around the holes instead. This saves a whole lot of time.

Primer is important for making sure your paint adheres properly. It can also help you cover up flaws, and make it so you don't have to paint another layer — especially important for lighter paints.

6. Start with Primer

Primer is important for making sure your paint adheres properly. It can also help you cover up flaws, and make it so you don’t have to paint another layer — especially important for lighter paints. You can also get tinted primers (or, if you know how, tint your own primer) that can help prepare for the color even more effectively if necessary.

7. Box Your Paint

Boxing refers to mixing several gallons of paint together in a bucket before beginning an especially large project. Paint colors can differ between paint cans, even with the exact same color. This can look very bad if you switch cans halfway through a wall. Mixing all the cans together like this help avoid the problem, and is particularly important for brighter colors.

8. Use Canvas Drop Cloths and Floor Protection

Canvas is generally much better for clothing and floor protection. It won’t rip like plastic, it always lies flat, and it will absorb a bit of the paint so spills don’t spread around as easily. Also, you can keep reusing them!

Do you have a question about a specific paint project or type of paint? Just ask The Painting Company! We’d love to help you make the right painting choices, and we also offer free estimations for your home projects.

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