Give Your Home a New Look With The Right Paint

June 8th 2009
Give Your Home a New Look With The Right Paint

Painting a room an entire interior, or exterior of a home is a project you can perform without too much difficulty if you are properly prepared. A good paint job can last for many years, maintain an inviting, relaxing space and increase the resale value of your home. You can add drama, style, and personality to a home faster with paint than most any other kind of home or landscape project.

While it's tempting to start applying paint as quickly as possible, it's best to take time to set up the project, as most painting problems can be attributed to poor preparation.

- First, decide on colors that you'll definitely be happy with. Consider using the services of a professional color consultant.
- Before you have your paint supplier mix the paint, consider purchasing a sampler of your color choice and paint an area approximately 48 by 48 inches to determine how the color looks in the morning, afternoon and evening light.
Note: Most paint dealers including Cloverdale Paint make samplers available for this purpose.
- Ensure you have the right tools and equipment before you begin, i.e. step ladders, scaffolding and drop sheets (cloth type, not plastic.)
- Don't guess the room size or the amount of paint required. Measure the width, length and height of rooms to be painted. Your paint dealer can then calculate the required amount of paint for you.
- If you have paint left over, store in a tightly sealed container and set aside for touch-ups.

All walls, woodwork and flat-surfaced ceilings must be washed and rinsed as a first step. Shell Busey's Home Cleaning Formula is very effective for prepping surfaces for painting, and is available through most paint, and building supply stores. This will ensure for a clean, smooth surface.
- Repair small holes and cracks in the walls with a wall filling compound, sand well, and spot prime these areas to prevent flashing.
- Some paint, especially bright and light colors will require a primer coat before you paint. Discuss this with your paint dealer.
- Prepare the room. Create a functional workspace by clearing out small items. Move large furniture to the centre of the room and cover with protective sheets. Don't forget the drop sheets on the floor, and use painter's masking tape.
- Always apply paint in this order: ceilings, walls, trim.

- Measuring tape
- Drop sheets (cloth type)
- Painter's overalls and rubber gloves
- A selection of brushes -- good quality pure bristle for oil/alkyd paints and nylon or synthetic for water-based/acrylic latex paints
- Spackling knife four inches wide and patching spackle for picture hook nail holes
- Sandpaper
- Rollers and pans
- A leveler, if wallpaper is being considered
- Cleaning solvents if required
- Two empty 20-litre pails to clean brushes and rollers
- Patience

Ask your paint dealer for the best quality paint. High-quality paint will get the value back in resistance to wear and tear.

Most paint suppliers have a low VOC or low-odor paint available if you are sensitive to paint odors.

Don't forget the environmental features of your paint choice. Acrylic latex is an excellent choice for most interior and exterior applications.

Flat to low gloss finishes are the most popular paints for siding and fences. Gloss paints are popular for doors, railings and trim and on areas exposed to high traffic or abrasion. Gloss finishes are tough and
durable and are characterized by a sheen that results in a cool, crisp finish that reflects light.

Paints are designed to be used on certain surfaces and to perform well under different conditions:

Primers- seal the surface and help form a tight bond between the topcoat and underlying surface material. Primers should be applied to surfaces that have never been painted and areas that are bare or have been patched. The two key factors in primer selection are adhesion to the surface and compatibility with the topcoat. The paint you choose will usually identify a recommended type of primer on the label.

Latex- (water based) Easy to apply and clean-up, low odor, quick drying, durable, can be applied to partially moist surfaces, resists peeling, chalking, blistering and is flexible. Second coats can usually be applied within 2 - 4 hours of the first coat. Available in many glosses and has excellent color retention and UV protection. Latex is ideal for siding, fences, stucco, and masonry.

Alkyd- (oil based) excellent adhesion, smooth finishes, tough and durable. Alkyd paints are better over chalky surfaces or previous alkyd paints. They require mineral spirits for clean-up. Allow overnight drying between coats. Available in many glosses. Ideal for siding, trim, windows and doors.

Enamel- (oil or water based) A glossy finish that is tough, durable, smooth and impact resistant. Enamels are available for a wide variety of surfaces including metal, pipes, etc.

Other Tips for tools
Brushes- Select a quality 2" - 2.5" (50 - 63mm) angled brush for cutting-in trim. Choose pure bristle natural hair brushes for alkyd or oil based paints and synthetic brushes for use with both water based and alkyd paints. Top quality brushes will hold more paint, have less dripping and spattering, apply paint more smoothly with minimal brush marks, give a long, even release of paint and provide better "cut-in" ability. Quality tools can be cleaned and saved for your next painting project.

Rollers- Rollers are available in various nap sizes, fabrics, lengths and quality grades. Choose premium quality rollers to minimize fluff, spattering and unwanted marking.

Spray Application- Sprayers can be bought or rented. Ask one of our professionals for advice before attempting this method of application.

Special Tools- Surfaces with unusual angles and contours are sometimes difficult to paint. Special tools can make difficult areas easier to paint; pipe rollers & paint mitts for pipes and other contoured surfaces, various paint pads and trimmers, long handled rollers and brushes for hard to reach areas.

Surface Preparation & Application
- Gather materials and tools. Remove or cover window and door hardware.
- Use low tack masking tape. Regular masking tape is very difficult to remove if left on outside for more than 24 hours.
- Cover shrubs and walkways.
- Play it safe! Wear a long sleeved shirt, painter hat, safety glasses, and a dust mask or gloves if needed.
- When using a ladder, be sure to have a level firm base.

Prepare the Surface
- Paint can accentuate the surface condition, it is important that the surface be well prepared.
- Scrape or wire brush off any loose paint and rust.
- Remove oil, grease and dirt by hand or by pressure washing the surface. If mildew is present, wash with Shell Busey's Home Cleaning Formula or a solution consisting of 1 part bleach with 3 parts water. A car wash or turks head cleaning brush works great. Leave the bleach solution on the surface for at least 20 minutes to kill the mildew. Scrub solution vigorously on the surface and rinse thoroughly with water. Allow to dry. Use gloves and eye protection and follow the bleach manufacturer's instructions. Don't forget to cover your plants and shrubs.
- Make all needed repairs. Patch and fill all holes and cracks, replace loose or rotted wood.
- Caulk siding joints and around windows and doors. Make sure vents in soffits and eaves are clean.
- Sand all patches smooth.
- Exterior weathered surfaces that have been washed with TSP do not usually need sanding. Areas under the eaves and soffits not exposed to sunlight or shiny areas should be scuff sanded with 80 grit sandpaper to maximize adhesion.
- Spot prime all repaired or bare areas.
- Apply Paint & Stain.

Applying the Paint
For a professional looking paint job, paint must be spread evenly onto the surfaces without running, dripping or lapping onto other areas. Keep these three steps in mind when painting; paint is first applied, then distributed, then finally smoothed.

Stir the paint well before and occasionally during use. Use a lifting motion with the stir stick to ensure all solids on the bottom are well mixed.
Exterior paint is best applied with a brush. This actually works the paint into the surface for better adhesion. Rollers or paint pads can also be used.

Apply paint in the following order;
a. Roof Trim.
b. Walls.
c. Doors.
d. Windows.

In general, work from the top down.

Clean tools - Quality tools will last for years if properly cleaned and stored.
Latex Paint - Clean brushes, roller and tray using soap and warm water before the paint dries.
Alkyd Paint - Use the correct thinner then remove residue with warm soapy water.
1. Store paint and cleaners safely. Ensure that paints are airtight. Store paint in a cool, dry area - ideally a shed, closet or locking cabinet. Keep out of storage areas that freeze. Ensure that paint is stored away from radiators or any other source of combustion. Transfer partially empty cans to smaller containers where there's less air to dry the paint out. Keep away from children & pets.
2. Dispose of paint. If you bought too much paint and don't want to store it, offer it to a friend or community group. If you can't give it away, check with your local municipality for disposal advice.
3. Record paint name and number for future reference and correct matching. Label each can by area, i.e.: siding, fence, front door.
4. Replace hardware.

Enjoy your new, revitalized home!

For more great advice on paint visit Cloverdale

For qualified painters within Greater Vancouver, or for any other home service within Western Canada, Call Shell Busey's Home Services Referral Network 604 542 2236, toll free at 1 888 266 8806.