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Painting Tips and Tricks

Category Painting
Painting is a great way to spruce up your home, inside or out. However, if you aren't careful it can be much messier and more complicated than is necessary. This is a guide about painting tips and tricks.
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By 26 found this helpful
August 20, 2010

You'll keep the floor neater during the next painting job if you glue a paper plate to the bottom of your paint can, instead of trying to move newspapers under the container every time you set it down.

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By fossil1955 from Cortez, CO

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By 11 found this helpful
April 10, 2014

Some jobs need all kinds of 'taping off'. Try using Press 'n Seal instead of tape. It adheres to itself and is so easy to get where you want covered up. I'm repainting a step stool here, and it was so easy to cover all the legs and step attachments. A lot cheaper than a roll of blue tape, too!

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July 16, 2012

I have been painting the house, so I have had to wash out my paint tray. I found a tip to avoid having to rinse out your tray for the next colour. Just put a plastic bag over your tray and push it down before you dump in the paint. When you're done, just remove the plastic bag.

By coville123 from Brockville, Ontario

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February 25, 2011

With spring right around the corner, here are some handy painting hints:

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By latrtatr from Loup City, NE

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By 7 found this helpful
December 23, 2015

Painting the inside door moulding around the hinges is a job I've never relished because it's picky work. I always ended up getting paint on the hinges no matter how careful I was. It looked awful and needed scraping off when the paint was dry. My most recent paint job throughout the entire house has been so much easier, thanks to simple Vaseline.

With a Q-tip, I smeared the hinge bracket full of Vaseline and painted away without worrying about getting paint where it didn't belong. When the paint was dry, I cleaned the hinge bracket with a paper towel and I had a hinge that looked brand new again.

I'm thinking that this would work well when I do the window frames. No more taping and no more scraping paint off the glass.

Sorry, I haven't got a picture available. We've just moved and I haven't found the camera yet. But I'm sure you can appreciate what I'm talking about, we've all been there.

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January 24, 2014

In each room I store a paint chip from the store for that room. Should I need to touch up the paint for that room or want to repaint it, I have all the information on that card. I also write on the card how much paint it took for my next paint job in that room, and if I used flat, semi-gloss, etc. It is also handy to grab if I want to match it to fabric, curtains, pillows, etc.

I have done this in each house I have lived in, and when I move I leave it behind for the next owner. In the houses I rent out, I have one for the renters should they need to touch up the paint, and a copy for my records in file for that particular house.

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July 11, 2012

When painting, don't take off door handles just cover them with tin foil. It makes the job a whole lot easier.

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February 25, 2010

I have been painting the last couple of weeks and all the rooms are different colors. To save a lot of work on clean-up I put the painting tray in a plastic grocery bag. When you are done painting a room just pull the bag off the tray inside out and throw in the garbage.

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By 1 found this helpful
April 24, 2009

When painting a room, if you find the touch-up tedious, use a tampon. This is how it works. Push a small portion from the applicator. Dip just the tip in the paint. Remove the drip. Blot on the mistake whereas your paint touched the ceiling or vise versa.

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By 2 found this helpful
March 18, 2013

I attach a can opener, to the end of a paintbrush, that is removable. This makes things so much more simple instead of searching for the opener every time.

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By 2 found this helpful
June 22, 2009

Keep a small container of your wall paint in your refrigerator for quick touch up jobs. The paint stays fresh and you don't have to drag out a heavy messy paint can for small jobs.

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July 22, 20051 found this helpful

Before painting, clean walls with white vinegar and let dry before painting. Inexpensive and easy. Also put your paint brushes in white vinegar and rinse well and dry before using.

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January 19, 2011

Want to save having to wash paint out of that paint tray or the cost of replacing one? How about the cost of liners? Use heavy duty aluminum foil. Save your larger used pieces and use the clean side in your paint tray.

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By 1 found this helpful
September 23, 2010

Apply a coat of lemon oil to woodwork if you are painting around it. If any paint spatters onto the woodwork, it will wipe off without any trouble. You are also conditioning the woodwork at the same time.

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December 6, 20041 found this helpful

When doing painting, staining, or polyurethane projects; I keep Wet Ones pop-up wipes handy to clean my hands, wipe off paint brush handles, or wipe up small accidents.

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By 2 found this helpful
January 21, 2014

Here's a tip that I use all the time. Wear your clothes inside out! Sweats work the best.

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June 29, 2013

When you're painting and you need to put your brush down it can be messy, not to mention losing it. Just use a hot glue gun and attach a magnet on to your brush handle. Then when you need to set down your brush it will stay right on your paint can.

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By 2 found this helpful
August 14, 2009

When you need a small amount of paint for touch-up check the craft department. Walmart has every color and they cost about $1.

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January 8, 20072 found this helpful

Keeping Paint Off Hinges. It can be difficult to put masking tape on hinges to keep paint off them. Instead, cover them with petroleum jelly.

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April 11, 20050 found this helpful

Always use blue painter's tape, not regular masking tape to mask areas when you are painting. Blue tape peels off easily, masking tape often doesn't.

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By 0 found this helpful
May 3, 2007

When painting, write down the brand of paint and color of paint and any numbers on the can that identify the type of paint. Keep this info in a binder or on your computer as a good reminder if you ever have to buy more.

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June 29, 20060 found this helpful

If you are painting and don't want to get paint on your shoes or the floor throughout the rest of your house, tie plastic grocery bags over your shoes.

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By 0 found this helpful
January 12, 2006

If you like a quick painting job, paint your entire room with a Flat Latex paint, trim and all...

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June 17, 20170 found this helpful

Placing a rubber band so that it crosses the top of your paint can provides a way to remove excess paint from your brush while working on your painting project without messing up the rim of the can. This is a guide about use a rubber band across paint can.

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May 24, 20170 found this helpful

Plastic wrap can have many uses when painting that will help control the spread of wet paint. This is a guide about use plastic wrap when painting.

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May 23, 20170 found this helpful

Using a roller with too rough of a nap is a common cause for having bubbles in paint after it has dried. This is a guide about air bubbles in wall paint.

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April 23, 20170 found this helpful

When painting a room with different colored walls or trim, it can be a challenge to have a clean, clear change of color. This is a guide about painting sharp, straight lines.

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April 5, 20170 found this helpful

Avoiding paint spills and splatters on carpet is a major concern for DIY painters. This guide has advice about protecting carpet while painting.

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September 13, 20140 found this helpful

This is a guide about protecting plants when painting your home. Painting your house is a big job. If you have a lot of plants around the foundation, you will want to protect them before you begin.

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By 0 found this helpful
November 30, 2010

When painting with toddlers, we put the paint in a plastic paint cup. I found there were no lids at the center where I'm working. I don't like washing the remaining paint out of the cups because it is so wasteful.

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By 0 found this helpful
September 3, 2008

When we moved in to our new home, we wanted to get the painting done before moving all the furniture. We supplied the paint and the food. Friends and family had an enjoyable time and the painting got done in no time.

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By 0 found this helpful
March 22, 2007

Do you ever notice how the trim next to the floor in your house collects so much dust and never seems to come clean? Try wiping all the dust, dirt, and food off the best you can.

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January 4, 20070 found this helpful

Quick Paint Touch Ups. Did you already clean your paint brushes but notice you missed a spot? Don't dirty a paint brush for a small touch up. Just use a q-tip and toss it when you are finished.

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November 1, 20060 found this helpful

Put plastic lids under each leg to help catch drips when painting. It's also good to put newspaper down, but the plastic lids will keep paint from soaking through the newspaper and staining the floor when applying paint to the legs.

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April 16, 20050 found this helpful

After cleaning a used paintbrush, put a rubber band around the bristles of the brush to help it keep its shape while drying.

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April 16, 20050 found this helpful

I have been painting my living room and find that, very often, I am called away from my work by a telephone call or a child needing help. I keep a large plastic garbage sack nearby and, when I am called away, I place my paint pan, with roller and brush and all, inside the bag and twist it a few times to seal.

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October 6, 20040 found this helpful

A lot of the stores around here have started putting their meat in big plastic pans. Washed out these make great disposable paint pans.

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September 21, 20040 found this helpful

Borrow your kid's skateboard when you are painting baseboards and lower walls. Just sit cross-legged on a skateboard and roll along with your paintbrush and a paint can. It's much easier on your back. By Katz

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Questions

Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

By 0 found this helpful
November 14, 2007

I painted my kitchen walls, I used an oil-based paint to seal my walls (they are wall board). I used a gray primer which I was told to use by the man at my local Home Depot. I have painted 3 coats of Antique Red Behr Sateen Lustre.

I now have brush lines as well as streaks shiny and dull which makes the walls look zebra stripped. Does anyone know how I can fix this problem, or can I fix it! Please help.

Linda from Belton, MO

Answers

By guest (Guest Post)
November 14, 20070 found this helpful

Was the red paint oil based also or was it water based? If it was water based and you painted over an oil base paint than you will have paint peeling and chipping off the wall. You can't paint water based over oil based paint.

You would have to go back with an oil based paint and paint over it but you still might have a problem because now you have a layer of water based paint between two oil based paints. I have been painting walls for a long time and I had that problem with the house in live in now. The previous owner paint a water base over an oil base and it is constantly chipping away. Good Luck I hope this has helped some.

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By guest (Guest Post)
November 15, 20070 found this helpful

My husband is a contractor and he uses a long handled sander available at Home Depot or Lowes. He sands lightly after EVERY coat that has been applied and dried completely. It takes very little effort to do this. You have to make the surface slightly pourous so it will take the next paint in well. It will remove any streaks and little mistakes...a wonderful idea!

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By guest (Guest Post)
November 29, 20070 found this helpful

Hey just painted my living room and hall same problem. Used several kinds of brushes and rollers and was streaked with gloss and the dull every motion used to paint the surface. You can see exactly how we painted it. I have emailed Behr. Every one I talk to says how did that happen or thats really weird. So I would contact the and who ever you bought the paint from. If the lights are dim you cant really see but in the light of day I am very disappointed.

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By 0 found this helpful
July 13, 2009

I would like to know if there is a way to add some pearlescence or shimmer to paint, without doing a real faux finish. I just want something I can roll on over a base coat. I am really not into the faux, but I really want to have a little sparkle or mother of pearl effect. I have seen some things that Lowe's sells, but they seem complicated. For now I need simple. Thanks so much.

By buckdoe from AR

Answers

July 14, 20090 found this helpful

I used Pearl Finish from Home Depo on my counter tops.

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July 15, 20090 found this helpful

Thanks for the info did you roll it on or did you use a paint brush? I am not real good with faux finish they never turn out when I do it. Thanks for the feedback. Connie

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July 16, 20090 found this helpful

I have used the Pearl glaze ragged over white to give the walls a shimmer. If you don't want to rag, you could try mixing it with your paint and doing a sample. I keep a scrap of sheetrock about 2' x 3' to practice ideas on. If that is not availble to you, I would just test it out on a small portion of the wall before doing the whole room.

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By 0 found this helpful
June 26, 2010

We recently had the ceiling in our foyer plastered and primed, but the manager said he does not paint. The ceiling was white previously and the primer now is white. Do I really need to paint the ceiling (white) or can I just leave it as is, just primed?

By Alicez from NY

Answers

June 26, 20100 found this helpful

Ceilings are painted with a ceiling paint so marked on the can. I think it is Glidden makes a ceiling paint that goes on pink and dries to a white. The pink color lets you see and spots you missed.
I would leave your ceiling as it is.

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Anonymous
June 29, 20100 found this helpful

Since it's not your property and the manager doesn't find it necessary to paint then just leave it be. Why spend the money?

Oh, wait! Did the manager have the plastering and painting done or did you? That might make a difference :-o

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By 0 found this helpful
July 8, 2009

I want to thin paint so I can sponge it on my kitchen cabinets. I assumed that what I wanted to do was called whitewashing, but everything I've read says otherwise. What's the right mixture?

By hlybg2000 from NC

Answers

July 10, 20090 found this helpful

Yes, you can thin your paint for sponging techniques. It is best to have a "thicker" consistency when sponging rather than a "watery" one. When you say whitewash, is that more of an overall finish, like "pickled" pine or oak? If that is the finish you want, then a more watery consistency is required.

As for amounts, it is strictly trial and error. Try a small amount of paint mixed with an equal part of water (I am thinking 1/4 cup of each), mix well, and test on the inside of the cupboard door. Keep adding and mixing until you get a consistency you like. Have fun, and good luck

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July 10, 20090 found this helpful

It's my understanding that whitewashing is staining over natural wood before any other finish is applied. It seems to be related to an opaque wood stain rather than solid wood stain. Suggest always trying an inconspicuous place first to test whatever you decide. It's always trial and error, you know.

It's not like antiquing we did in the 60's and 70's, but more like a film over light colored wood. Doesn't work well at all over dark wood, believe me, unless you have stripped and bleached the wood first. Let us know and show pics if you can?
God bless and help you! : )

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April 12, 20130 found this helpful

Can I paint semi gloss acrylic over the same without sanding? It was lasted painted approximately three years ago.

By Wendy S from Australia

Answers

April 15, 20130 found this helpful

The reason the last paint job lasted so long is that the surface was properly prepared-the surface was roughed enough that the new paint adhered. If the current surface isn't roughed in some way, the new paint will not adhere and you'll have a nasty peeling mess to show for your hard work.

You can probably rough the current surface easily, though, with a TSP wash. I'm not sure if that product is available in Australia, it's a cleaner, comes as a premixed spray or bottle (pricey, wowsa), powder, or concentrate. It will do a great job roughing your surface for painting.

Or you can try a homemade mix of vinegar and water (1-1 parts ratio). Test a small inconspicuous area to be sure this will rough your surface sufficiently to permit the new paint to adhere to the old.

Using a wash often opens the current paint surface enough to permit new paint adhesion, and eliminates the need to sand.

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