How To Paint A Room

A man with a roller

A fresh coat of paint is an easy way to update the look of any room. But before you paint a room, it’s important to prepare. By knowing what supplies you may need and following these helpful steps, you’ll be on your way to a newly painted room.


What Painting Supplies Do You Need?


Before you begin, it’s a good idea to gather all of the necessary supplies. This will help you avoid an emergency trip to the hardware store mid-project, and avoid the temptation to skip a step because you weren’t prepared.



Make sure you have any required tools and supplies on hand before you paint. For instance, you may need:


  • Drop cloths
  • Paint brushes and rollers
  • Paint tray
  • Painter’s tape
  • Primer
  • Wall paint
  • Ceiling paint
  • Trim paint
  • Stir sticks
  • Spackle, sandpaper and spreader
  • Towels and rags
  • Screwdriver



How Do You Prepare to Paint a Room?


It’s important to do a little prep work to make sure your painting project goes as smoothly as possible.


Wash the walls and ceiling.  Before you paint, it’s important that you make sure there’s no dust or debris on your walls. Use a sponge with soap and water to remove dirt, crayon marks, mildew and other marks on your walls, to ensure you’re painting with a clean surface.


Fill holes and repair imperfections. If you’re planning to redecorate, this is a good time to remove unneeded nails and hooks from the wall. Use a DAP patching product to fill holes and repair other imperfections on the wall before painting. Be sure to sand those areas smooth before painting.


Remove the electrical plates.  Use a screwdriver to remove outlet covers so you can paint behind them. It’s generally a good idea to do this rather than painting over them while they’re attached to the wall to prevent the paint from sealing them to the wall.


Spread a drop cloth.  Before you open your paint, make sure you cover the floor and other objects, such as furniture, with a drop cloth to avoid dripping paint on them. Retailers sell reusable drop cloths as well as disposable plastic covers for this purpose. While you might be tempted to use other materials, like old bed sheets, keep in mind that it’s easy for wet paint to seep through those types of fabrics.


Apply painter’s tape. Painter’s tape lets you achieve clean lines of paint. You can tape off the ceiling where it meets the wall, the baseboard and door frames to avoid getting wall paint on those surfaces.



How to Paint Your Walls


Even if you buy paint that comes pre-mixed with primer, in some cases it’s still a good idea to begin with a coat of paint primerWhen making a drastic paint color change from dark to light, or light to dark, priming is recommended. When painting walls a darker color, applying Zinsser Bulls Eye 1-2-3 Gray Primerfirst will help reduce the number of paint coats needed to achieve the color. Meanwhile, if you’re painting dark colored walls a lighter color, Zinsser Bulls Eye 1-2-3 White Primerwill help hide the dark color underneath.



Once the primer is dry, you’re ready to begin painting. It’s best to paint the ceiling first, followed by the walls and trim. Use a brush to apply wall paint to the perimeter of the room – around baseboards, and along the ceiling, for example. Once you’ve cut in these areas, use a paint roller to cover the rest of the wall. Rolling the paint onto the wall in overlapping “W” patterns can help you fully cover the wall without missing areas. Also, it’s best to pull off the painter’s tape before the new paint has dried completely.


To finish, use a clean paint brush to paint your door frame and baseboards. If you use painter’s tape for this step, be sure to follow the recommendations on the package to ensure the new wall paint has fully dried before you cover it with tape.


Armed with the right tools and knowledge, you’ll be ready to paint any room in your home. Then, when you’re done, you can enjoy your space’s new look and feel the pride that comes with successfully tackling a DIY painting project.



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