DIY Painting Tips

DIY painting

Painters are able to achieve excellent quality finishes on walls and ceilings, with the latest developments in textures and patterns meaning that an entire decorative style can start from the paint colour in the room. Many people are choosing to before their own DIY painting jobs as part of either their major home renovations or simply to give a tired room a much needed facelift.

Home renovations and the feel of a house can start with the colour choice of paint with many people focusing purely on the colour as the most important decision. However, once you have decided to take on a DIY painting project there are several key areas to consider and complete properly in order to get that professional painters look.

Things to consider include: preparing the surface, the right tools and application of the paint.


Preparation refers to both preparations of the room and the intended painted surface itself, with second-rate preparation meaning the difference between a professional and amateur result.

First, get a lot of drop cloth, more than what you think you will need as it will move around and you need to ensure that the floor is protected at all times. What's more you want to tape it to the edges so that it will remain relatively steady.

As far as wall and ceiling preparation goes, there are several steps you have to complete for a smooth clean painting surface:

  • Use a soap scrub on the walls for a thorough clean surface
  • Dull any shiny surfaces by sanding and cleaning
  • Apply an oil based primer or coat of flat paint can take the shine off a surface
  • Scrape off flaking paint and wallpaper and patch up any holes or cracks
  • Sand raised imperfections after patching has dried
  • Apply a primer or undercoat

Once you are ready to start painting there are several steps that are recommended to follow in order for a successful painting job.

Start with the ceiling to allow for accidental running down the walls, as you will be painting over this later so it doesn't matter. Additionally, you will want to wear goggles during this part for eye protection.

The Right Tools

In addition to your standard array of DIY painting tools, there are is a huge range of specialised DIY painting tools that are designed to make the process as easy as possible but also give you that professional painters finish.

These tools include:

  • Rollers: essential for any DIY painting job there are several things to remember when choosing a roller. You should consider the size of the surface you are painting, the texture, and the type of paint you want to apply when deciding on which roller to use. Generally painters will use a 270mm roller with the nap being the changing aspect of a roller. (The nap this is the length of the pile). A good rule of thumb to remember is that the smoother the surface, the shorter the nap, which means that if you are painting a rough surface with raised lines then a longer nap roller would be best.
  • Brushes: Obviously a paint brush is fundamental to a quality painting job with two types of brush on the market at the moment, which is filament and hog's bristle. The filament paint brush is probably preferable for a DIY painting project as it limits the amount of brush marks and dried strokes in the paint and it won't lose bristles. Also, if you are taking on a DIY painting job then probably opt for bigger brushes with long bristles as it will just make the job a little easier and improve the finish.
  • Corner Painter: made for easy painting of corners, especially ideal for awkward or hard-to -reach corners of a room
  • Edger : provides a sharp edge for the corners of walls and ceiling and gives a sharp, clean edge. Particularly using for features walls with opposing colours and walls and ceilings
  • Foam Brushes: ideal when using water-based or oil-based paints, creates a better finish and easier to get clearer detail
  • Pad Painters: great for both interior and exterior painting surfaces, this tool will speed up the painting process
  • Squeegees: a surprising choice for painting, but using a squeegee on your recently painted walls will have a "fan" effect and works well with texturing
  • Wallpaper Finishing Brush: A wallpaper finishing brush also makes a striated pattern when dragged through paint due to the coarse bristles which produce a great textured look

Application Tips

If you have chosen to complete your own DIY painting project as opposed to hiring painters to complete the job, there is some handing paint applying tips that can give the extra-professional finish to any wall or painted surface.

  • Tape over edges and items that you don't want to paint such as outlets or skirting boards
  • Start by painting the edges on the walls first.
  • When painting with a roller, use a criss-cross pattern, like an X. This give a better coat of paint and is less likely to how any paint strokes as the edges of the paint blend together. Never roll in parallel strokes or you will get an uneven finish.
  • Use an extension pole on your roller when applying to the ceiling to save yourself time, money and effort
  • Paint with the grain of the wood for an even line with short strokes at first followed by long strokes for a cleaner look.
  • Once the paint is distributed and the roller almost dry, a handy trick is to go back over the whole area in long even strokes to create and even finish.

Finally when cleaning your tools opt for an appropriate solvent followed by warm soapy water and rinse. For even better protection and longevity for your brushes, wipe them over with kerosene and store wrapped in newspaper or cloth.


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