10 Painting Tips For Your Home
During our tenure as the “home improvement brothers”, on the daily Family Channel TV talk show “Home & Family, we have learned that our viewers are extremely interested in a segment we do entitled “sixty-second solutions”. This is where we dispense home improvement short-cuts that can be explained in a about a minute that either save time or money – or both. Although our sixty-second solutions usually apply to every aspect of home maintenance, repair and cleaning, we decided that we would share just those that apply to painting — this time round. We think you’ll get quite a kick out of how our tips can be used from the beginning to the end of most painting projects.
1) Gloves will prevent contact with paint and thinner and protect sensitive skin from drying and cracking. Unfortunately, trying to paint with gloves on can increase difficulty just simply makes many simple tasks much harder to perform. Before working with paint and brush use hand and face lotion or petroleum jelly face, hands, neck and arms. You may get covered with paint, but it will be super easy to remove when it comes time to clean up.
2) Never use paint unless you are absolutely positive that is free of dirt and debris. To be sure simply stretch cheese cloth or an old nylon stocking over a bucket and filter out everything except the paint. Thin and mix the paint before running it through your favorite filter material.
3) The stir stick that most paint stores will give you as a gift – once you have purchased their paint – can be improved by drilling a few holes in the paddle end. The holes make the paint easier to stir (less resistance) and the movement of the paint through the holes increases blending activity. Make sure to blend the paint thoroughly. Improperly mixed paint will not adhere as well, will be difficult to match later and may not even dry properly. That is a mess that you don’t even want to deal with.
4) The novice painter invariably applies too much paint. In a world where more is often better such is not a smart technique when applying oil base paint. Two to three THIN coats of paint will yield the most professional looking finished wood work. When properly thinned, oil base paint will absolutely not stick as it is being applied — not even a little bit. As a matter of fact, when oil base paint is thinned to the proper consistency, it kind of feels like there are little ball bearings between the end of the brush and the surface being painted. When painting latex paint on walls, the opposite is true. The thicker the better.
5) The experienced painter often “cuts in” wood work without the use of masking tape. However, most of us who don’t paint for a living do. Masking tape can become a sticky mess. Make sure to remove it immediately after the paint has dried. If sticky masking tape becomes a problem for you use hot air from a hair dryer to help remove it.
6) Prevent paint from spilling from the edge of the can onto the floor by taping a paper plate onto the bottom of the can. As you move the can from place to place the paper plate will protect the floor from inadvertent drops of unwanted color.
7) Taking things one step further, you may want to use a hammer and nail to punch holes into the groove in the rim at the top of the can. Paint will drain through the holes and into the can – instead of over the edge and onto the outside of the can.
8) When the job is all done – and before the lid goes on the can – use a marking pen to indicate how much paint is left in the can. With the paint level marked on the side of the can, use plastic wrap as a “gasket” between the can and the lid to insure a perfect seal every time. By the way, don’t be afraid to store your paint upside down. Doing so insure a perfect air-tight seal and this insures the paint will last a long time.
9) Mixing a few drops of vanilla with paint will make the job smell better and won’t damage the paint. Also, don’t use paint that smells like mildew. Doing so will create a mildew mess that you may never be able to remove.
10) Once you have collected up all of the tools and materials that you will need to perform your paint task you will want to protect your eyes, skin and clothing from the mess associated with the job. Although it isn’t a sixty-second solution, we would like to suggest that you consider safety glasses to protect your eyes. Goggles are great protection, but because they are open, safety glasses offer more air circulation — and therefore more comfortable.