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Interior Painting Tips

These are a few tips for a Do-It-Yourselfer who wants to tackle their own painting project. I always recommend hiring a professional Painting Contractor if you want professional results. On the other hand, I realize that some homeowners like doing the work themselves or simply can't afford it. This list will help you with your painting project.

1. How can you tell if your trim(woodwork/doors, baseboards, etc.) was painted with an oil based paint or a water based(latex) paint?

This is very important if you are planning on repainting your trim and don't know what the previous Painting Contractor used for paint. If it was painted with an oil based paint, I would repaint with an oil based paint. If it was painted with a latex paint, I would stick with a latex. If it was painted with an oil and you would like to switch to a latex paint, I recommend applying a coat of oil based primer before applying the latex paint.

Now how do you determine what it was painted with?

Most Painting Contractors can tell just by looking at it. Another way would be to use a piece of 120 grit sandpaper and sand a small section of the woodwork. After sanding, wipe your hand over the section. If there is dust on your hand than it is an oil based paint. No dust=latex paint.

2. While we are on the subject of painting trim, no matter what was used to paint the trim before (oil or latex), you must sand all trim prior to repainting. I use a piece of 120 grit sandpaper and I keep a duster with me to dust as I sand. For a duster you can use an old paint brush, a dust brush, or even a damp rag.

Sanding prior to painting will help smooth the trim but more importantly it will give the new paint better adhesion to the existing paint and a longer lasting paint job.

3. What sheens of paint should you use in which room(s) when doing an interior painting job?

The answer to this question is mostly a matter of taste. As the saying goes, "Beauty is in the Eye of the Beholder." I always give a client some suggestions but ultimately the client is the one that will be living in the home and should make the final decision.

With that being said, I can tell you what sheens I use for most rooms.

I will use a flat paint on ceilings. 90% of the time I will use a semi gloss on all trim. For walls in kitchens, bathrooms, laundry rooms (any room where there is moisture), etc. I will use an eggshell paint for the fact that it is washable and won't be damaged by the water. For walls in Living rooms, Dining rooms, Bedrooms, etc. I use flats, satins, eggshells, or low lustres. As I said earlier, since you will be the one looking at the walls, this would be a decision for you to make. You can research each sheen and pick one that is most suitable for the room.

4. Another tip for interior painting would be to remove all faceplates, nails, screws, hardware, etc. before applying any paint. Painting around these

areas with a brush you could potentially get paint on them. Also when you remove everything off of the wall you can use a roller instead of a brush around these areas. It will be a more uniform job in the end.

Visit for more painting tips or to get a free quote from a Painting Contractor.

This is a photo of an Interior Painting job I did in Wayne, Pa.

This is another photo of the Interior Painting in Wayne.

This is another angle of the same Interior Painting job.

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