Paint brushesJune 25, 2002
There are two general types of paint brushes - natural hair bristles and synthetic bristles such as nylon or polyester.
When applying any type of latex bases coatings use synthetic bristles. Synthetic brushes will hold their shape and proper stiffness. Top quality polyester brushes may be more expensive but are well worth the cost. Properly cleaned and stored, they can be successfully reused over and over again.
To clean your synthetic brushes after using latex paint, wash with soap and warm water, rinse well and allow to dry thoroughly before storing.
For alkyd or oil based paints you can use either natural bristles or synthetic bristle brushes. Good quality natural bristle brushes will give the best results when painting with enamels or any oil or alkyd top coat.
After use with oil based paints you will have to use paint thinners or turpentine to clean your brush. There are also commercial paint brush cleaners available.
When selecting any paint brush try this simple test before purchasing. Pull on the bristles, if more than two or three bristles can be pulled out the brush, it is probably not of very good quality. Remember, a good brush will make your job easier and if properly cared for, can last for many painting projects.
No matter what type of painting you are doing you will want to match the size and shape of the brush to the job.
For large exterior surfaces use a 4" wide flat brush with a 3/4" to 1" thickness.
For interior walls and ceilings, use brushes between 3" & 4" wide.
To cut in at corners on either interior or exterior walls use a 2" wide brush with tapered edges.
Exterior and interior wood work and mouldings are most easily painted using brushes between 1" & 2 1/2" wide.
1" & 2 1/2" wide angle sash brushes will make painting interior and exterior window frames much easier.
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