Choosing a wallpaper accent for our new bedroom

Residential Painting Rules You Should Never Break

If you decide to manage your own residential painting, either interior or exterior, you may be tempted to cut some corners so you can get the job done more quickly and more affordably. However, there are some painting rules you never want to break, if you want the paint to look its best and to last as long as possible. Note a few of those rules here, and consider hiring a pro if you realize this work is actually outside your area of expertise.

 Don't buy cheap paint

Cheap paint doesn't refer to the price itself, but to the quality of paint. Some off-brand paints may not have much pigment, so they will look more pale than their advertised colour and also wash off easily. These paints may also be more likely to break down and fade in the sun, in high humidity and when exposed to other harsh elements.

Different types of paint are also priced differently because of how they're made; for example, if you're painting a slick surface like a concrete floor or exterior metal, you may need a paint with more latex, so it adheres more easily. Research the best and most reputable brands of paint and the type of paint needed for different surfaces, rather than choosing by price alone.

Know the right technique and tools to use

Painting a wall with long, up and down strokes can leave streaks and smears, and thick, "gloppy" areas of paint. It's usually recommended that you create strokes in a W pattern instead, for a more even coat.

Also, note that there are different brushes and rollers for different surfaces; a thick, stringy cloth roller head is for surfaces with lots of pores, such as concrete or a brick fireplace. Using these rollers on a flat wall, however, will also create an overly thick coat and lots of smears. Research the techniques and tools for various areas before you even start shopping for supplies, so you can apply paint properly.

Clean, and clean some more

Paint cannot adhere to dust, dirt, mud, grime, and other such debris, so you never want to skimp on the time and techniques you need to thoroughly clean a surface before painting. It can also be good to clean the surface repeatedly, ensuring you rinse off any and all detergent and cleansers, and allow time for the surface to dry properly after your last cleaning. If you're unsure of whether or not the surface is properly cleaned, use a stronger detergent, heavier scrub brush, or other technique to ensure it's ready for painting.