Before beginning any paint project, make certain you are
working in a well ventilated room.
Clean As You Go
When painting, keep a damp rag handy to clean up as you
go. It's much easier to clean paint that is still wet.
For a quicker and more efficient paint job, don't overload
the paintbrush or roller. If it drips, there's too much
When you're painting a door, waiting between coats for
each side to dry can be time consuming. Here's a shortcut.
First, drive nails into the four corners and attach a
length of rope. Loop each rope once around a rafter or
beam. After painting one side, you can flip the work over,
unlooping the ropes, to paint the other side.
Paint Spray Technique
Using a paint sprayer can give you some versatility for
your next project. Using a spray gun rather than a roller
or brush allows you the option of varying color schemes by
fading and layering colors. You can achieve this by moving
closer or farther away from your surface. To ensure a
smooth finish, move at a consistent speed across your
surface and remember to always clean your machine and
hoses to avoid clogging.
Power Paint Sprayer
Use a power sprayer to cut days off your next big exterior
paint job. Apply a thin coat first as a primer, using
even, steady strokes that overlap. Start at the bottom and
work your way up, so you can get at the underside of your
clapboards or shingles. Allow this coat to dry and apply
final coats the same way. Remember to keep the sprayer and
its attachments clean and clog-free.
Cleaning paintbrushes is a messy job, but someone's got to
do it. First wipe off as much excess as you can. If you're
using latex paint, work the bristles in warm soapy water.
For oil-based paint, first clean brushes in a glass or
metal container in an inch of solvent, then use warm soapy
water. Smooth clean bristles with an old comb.
When painting a room which has surfaces that are in good
shape, plan on spending about half as much time on
preparation and clean-up as the actual painting. Where
surfaces are in poor shape, non-painting time will
increase accordingly, and may take more time than the
paint application itself. To save time in cleaning up
paint trays, either line them with aluminum foil before
starting, or simply slip smaller trash bags over them.
Smaller quart-size paint cans are hard to carry and easy
to tip over. To avoid these problems, try this: Put the
quart paint can inside of an empty gallon can that has a
handle. It will be easier to carry and, if it spills
inside of the larger can, you can just pour the paint back
into the quart can.
When masking off areas around trim etc. Use quality
painters tape. This tape is wider than most masking tape,
it doesn't absorb the paint and is easy to apply and
remove. It usually comes with an adhesive strip along one
edge which covers about a 1/3 of the width of the tape.
Don't use plain old masking tape.
To prevent air from entering partially used paint cans,
store them upside down after placing the top on firmly.