General Paint Tips
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Are you thinking about painting a room in your home but not sure how to get started? With a little direction, you will soon have a beautiful new room! Before you get started with the actual painting, prep work needs to be done. This would include patching holes, sanding off rough spots, removing hardware off cabinets, and so on. Unfortunately, many people skip the prep portion of a project, which is crucial. Good prep work equates to professional results.

Your first move will be to choose the colors you want in your room or your project. Choose the type of paint that matches the intended room or space best. For example, since a satin finish can be wiped down, this finish is great for family rooms or areas that may need cleaning more than other rooms. Keep in mind satin is wonderful for any wall. Paints with a flat finish are generally used for ceilings and are non-washable. A semi-gloss finish is the perfect choice for a child's room or kitchen. This particular finish is the easiest to clean but remember that it is shiny. A glossy paint is often used on metal furniture, toys, etc. If you have chosen colors that are dramatically different colors, apply the lighter colored paint first and then the darker paint. In most cases, using a good primer, quality paint, and even a well-made roller, you can finish the project in one coat.

If your project involves painting wood or woodwork, you want an oil-base semi-gloss paint. This particular type of paint expands with the swelling and/or shrinking of wood best. Finally, some projects require a good coat of two of primer. If you are painting over dark walls, a heavy-duty primer will help the more expensive paint hold better. Other areas where primer would be used include any new construction or areas that have been patched. Whether adding a coat of primer or a coat of paint, by rolling the roller in the shape of a "W", you will get better coverage and a more professional appearance. For the best appearance possible, paint in blocks of 4x4-feet, then moving to the next 4x4-foot block prior to the previous block drying. This will help you blend the paint from one block to another, thus eliminating lap lines. If you have chosen a semi-gloss or glossy paint, you should cut your block size in half.

Always start with the ceiling and work your way down to the woodwork since paint will drip, creating unnecessary cleanup work. If you plan to paint your ceiling, start with the edge going along the walls and using a brush, paint approximately two- to three-inches onto the ceiling. Once you have all of the edges finished, you can then use the roller, which will make the painting job smoother and quicker. Once the ceiling is completely dry, you can apply paint to the walls. For painting the ceiling lines, corners, and adjacent woodwork, use a quality brush. Finally, make sure you paint one wall at a time.

If you are a beginner, allow adequate time to do the job right and do not rush! Additionally, whether a beginner or expert painter, it is important to take breaks, especially if you are using a paint that has heavy fumes. Regardless of what type of paint you choose, make sure the windows are open or if painting during the winter months, have fans blowing to help circulate the air. If you are ultra sensitive to fumes, painter's masks are available at hardware and home improvement stores.

When you do take a break, rather than leave the roller or brush sitting in the paint tray, cover the tray using a damp cloth. This will keep the paint from drying out. If you splatter or drop paint on anything other than the surface you are painting, immediately wipe it off using a clean, damp cloth. At the end of the day, you can actually use plastic wrap to cover the rollers and brushes and then place them in the freezer, which will help them keep until you are ready to use them again. For the cans and trays, these will need to be thoroughly cleaned for the next day's use.
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