Correctly Accomplish Your Interior Painting ProjectMar10
3/10/2010 9:40 PM
The most cost affective and quickest home improvement project is interior painting. Interior house painting can be simple or as elaborate as you prefer. You can transform the look of a room or your entire house using paint.
The most important spaces in our lives are inside our homes and most can benefit from a new look.
Interior painting is inexpensive, especially if you do it yourself. The real cost is in time. The cost savings and decorative improvement with painting a room can be substantial when compared to new carpet or furniture.
With the right colors a room can change its feel and become a more enjoyable living space. The use of dark or vibrant colors can add spice to a dull room but are difficult colors to apply.
Confining vibrant colors to one wall for an accent walls is a great way to change the overall feel without breaking the bank. Painting just one wall can be a quick and easy way to achieve a new look.
For the do it yourselfer some patience is in order. It could take endless days or nights to complete an entire room if you have to paint after your regular job. Understand all the processes involved and what is needed in order to paint a room before starting.
Planning Your Interior House Painting Project
Coming up with a plan involves establishing a budget, estimating the cost of materials needed, finding the right colors for your décor and determine the amount of time you have to complete your interior painting project.
Of course there is even more to do. The condition of the room and your own ambitions will also add materials and time to this list.
Let's begin by estimating the cost of tools and materials you will need, plus choose the paint colors.
Start by making a list of the materials needed to prepare for painting a room. This includes spackle, caulk and any primer needed. This part of the list depends on the amount and types of preparation needed. Interior preparation can be simple, cover and paint, or complex involving drywall repair.
Now estimate the amount of primer, if needed, and finish paint you need. I figure 250 sq/ft per gallon for each coat for both the primer and paint. This low sq/ft number works best for acrylic primers and paints, plus it accounts for surface texture and different application methods.
The rougher a surface the more primer or paint it will take. At 250 sq/ft per gallon most rough textures will receive a good coat. For smooth sealed walls use 300 or 350 sq/ft per gallon. Double check with the manufacture, on the paint can it will state the recommended coverage rate.
How do you find the sq/ft surface area of walls or ceilings? Use this formula, measure the actual wall, length x width in feet or in inches divided by 12. Remember dark colors over a light back ground will need additional coats.
Paint estimating can be tricky, plus most manufactures do not carry ready mixed colors so the paint cannot be returned after purchased. No need to have a lot of paint left over, but you will want a quart for touch-up.
Many of the tools needed for painting a room you might already have. A basic set of interior house painting tools include drop cloths, hand held masking machine with masking paper and plastic film, light weight plastic, good paint brushes for cutting in the walls and trim and a professional roller set-up with a roller pole.
Other tools, like an airless paint sprayer or HVLP unit are optional for most jobs. A basic set of professional painting tools will make this job go much faster and the end result will look better. The most beautiful finishes are more than the paint. They need the best tools to achieve the best results. A novice can have excellent results using professional grade tools.
Just like good tools you will want good primer and paint. Select the best paint and materials to use for the best results. Purchasing quality interior paint pays with easier application and by lasting longer. The type of paint you choose will depend on the existing finish or a compatible interior primer can be applied. Plus you need to choose the best paint sheen.
Choosing the paint colors is probably the hardest part of interior painting. The color of the paint is what most people obsess over. Take your time and apply paint samples. It is cheaper to purchase a couple of quarts than repaint a room.
Try to have all the colors chosen before beginning any interior painting, but it is understandably hard to have all the colors ready. If you are having trouble with the accents, like the trim, wait until the ceiling and walls are done. This way you can see how the decor is affected and adjust the trim colors accordingly.
Interior Painting Tip
Before beginning any interior painting project, the actual type of paint on the surface, wall or ceiling etc, must be identified. Why? Water based finishes have a hard time adhering to oil based finishes.
The best way to do this is wiping a small area of the surface with Denatured Alcohol on a clean rag. If the paint is softened and removed then it is a Latex or Acrylic. Use a dark rag for light colors and light rag for dark colors, better to see the removed paint.
Never apply latex or acrylic house paint over an oil base finish without using a primer first.
Interior House Painting Procedures
Now it's time to implement your plan. Follow these steps for a more efficient and enjoyable time while painting a room.
Prepare the Surface
A beautiful quality paint job begins with the preparation. Interior painting preparation can amount to 50% or more of the actual work involved in painting a room. Pay attention to all of the details. Paint will highlight any defects in the ceiling, walls and trim.
Here planning will be a big help. Evaluate what needs to be done and determine your own capabilities. Some repairs can be tricky, requiring experience. Hire a professional painter or repair contractor if your needs are beyond your capabilities.
Typically the preparation consists of the following.
- Remove the furniture and large objects from the room or move toward the middle, out of the way if possible. The less in your way the better, plus the prep and painting will go faster if you have ample room to work.
- Wash if necessary. Dirt and grime interferes with the paints adhesion. Remove this mess with general house hold cleaner then rinse. For heavy deposits, especially grease, use trisodium phosphate. Allow the surface to dry completely before applying primer or paint.
- Cover and mask everything before opening the paint cans. It’s easier to protect than it is to clean off primer and paint. Interior masking consists of protecting the floors with drop cloths, covering non-painted wood work and covering any remaining furniture.
- Remove the switch plates and outlet covers for a better painting experience.
- Repair any holes or cracks. Drywall repair can be tricky, but small repairs are easily accomplished by most people.
- Prime any areas that received extensive repair or if you plan on applying latex or acrylic paint over oil base paint.
If your home was built before 1978 the existing interior finishes might contain lead based paint. Lead paint safety is a major concern when painting. Many painted or finished surfaces can contain lead and protecting yourself and your family needs to be a first priority.
Choose Your Interior Painting Method
Everything is covered and all repairs are finished; great now you are ready to begin the interior painting. The plan is to start with the largest areas first then end with the trim and woodwork. Working from the top down is a natural progression that keeps each step moving in the right direction. Two different application techniques can be used on the large areas, ceiling and walls. Sometimes these techniques are used together depending on the situation.
Rolling paint is the most common interior painting technique. Rolling is more labor intensive, but requires the least investment in tools and uses less paint. Rolling with a good roller cover and 5 gallon bucket can be used in all situations.
Rolling can be combined with spraying to produce better results when painting textured surfaces. This is called back rolling.
The second technique used is paint spraying, which can be used on both new unpainted areas as well as a time saving method when repainting. Not necessarily appropriate for all areas. This method uses the most paint and causes over spray.Spraying paint within a home requires special attention to the masking and covering.
Applying the Paint
Painting a room can consist of many surfaces each requiring its own strategy. A plan, as mentioned above, consists of tackling the largest areas first then finishing with the details.
Painting ceilings is the first areas to receive the new color. Ceilings are always a pain in the shoulders, with painting acoustical ceilingsbeing the worst. Rolling is suitable for small rooms and most areas of your home. Consider spraying acoustic, popcorn, style ceilings for the best finish with the least amount of work.
Painting the walls are next and by far the easiest to paint. If the color and sheen is identical as the ceiling the same paint and application method can be applied to the walls. Different paint will require a separate application method; this includes painting an accent wall. For large jobs the ceilings can be sprayed then the walls rolled.
Now its time for the details like painting the windows, all doors and trim. These areas always require extra patience and attention to the details. The choice of the right tools and interior painting techniques will help you with these projects.
The key to success with interior painting is a plan, using good tools and buying the best products. With a fresh coat of paint a room can become brighter and more inviting, walls can appear taller and the entire room can be a more enjoyable space. Interior painting combined with patience and common sense will result in a very pleasing living space.