Interior Painting Tips – Dos and Don’ts

On July 3, 2019 by Himanshu Shah

Interior Painting is one of the easiest ways to upgrade the look of any room. Unlike in exteriors, it’s less of a risk to choose bolder colors for the look of your room because it’s easier and cheaper to change it up. But most people underestimate and overlook so many things when it’s time to paint their walls and end up disappointed with the outcome. Wall preparation, color selection, type of paint all affect the final result. Here are some dos and don’ts to keep in mind when you decide to paint your interior walls.

Do Test Colors On Your Wall

Samples Paint

Sampling and testing colors on walls in all kinds of light possible is an excellent way to know whether you’ll be happy with the overall result. This especially applies to brighter colors, which could have different undertones in different lighting. Look at it at night and in both natural and artificial light.

Don’t rely too much on paint chips because it always turns out a different color when painted on walls. If you don’t want to try anything on your walls, wooden boards work well too, and you can place it in any part of your room also to see it in different lights.

 Lighter colors will need several coats to cover the old color and testing it will help you figure out the number of coats you’ll need. Likewise, for darker paints, you might also need more than two coats to get the desired color.

Don’t Be Afraid to Try Trendy and Bold Colors

Colourful Vibrant Living Room Interior Design

A lot of homeowners tend to stay safe with tried-and-tested white and neutrals, and that’s not necessarily bad. However, there are new colors every year, and sometimes you want to join in on the trend. Find a way to incorporate that color into your interior without overwhelming the existing materials and colors in a room. An accent wall is a great way to try out your favorite color without going overboard.

Do Know What Type of Paint is on Your Walls

Wall Paint

If you’re painting over a house, which you just bought, chances are you won’t know what type of paint the old owner used on the walls. Peel a small chip of paint from the walls and take it to a paint shop to have it analyzed. Knowing the type of existing paint will help you figure out what kind of primers are needed and paints that are compatible with the old paint. If your house was built in 1978, you need to get the paint tested for lead before sanding that off to prevent health hazards.

Don’t Just Guess, Estimate

A common mistake when painting walls is not calculating the right amount of paint needed per square footage. Overestimating will leave you with unused cans of paint and primers that you have no more use for. It’s also costly. Underestimating, on the other hand, will leave your walls looking inconsistent since not all batches of paint are the same even if it’s in the same color.

Measuring your room and considering windows and doors as well as built-ins into the calculation will help you decide. If in doubt, most interior painting companies and paint stores offer free estimations for you. You can also use online calculators to see how many gallons of paint and primer you’ll need.

Do Spend Time in Paint Proofing your House

House Painting

Preparing your house for painting can be tiring, but it can prevent a lot of headaches in the future. Painting can be messy, and taking the necessary steps to prevent paint from getting into the furniture, floors, and fixtures will go a long way.

Move what you can into the middle of the room and cover it with a drop cloth. Use rosin paper on wood and tile floors and canvas cloths for carpets. Cover trims switch plates, lighting fixtures, and window and door hardware. If you’re going to paint your window frames, cover the edges of the glass panes with masking tape. The more that you protect your furnishings, the less cleanup you’ll need to do after your painting.

Don’t Skip on Imperfections

Wall Painting

Unlike exterior walls which are more forgiving, interior walls are more likely to be critiqued by judging eyes; hence, it is essential to spend some time in smoothing out any rough surfaces and filling out holes. Look for any areas that need repairs or replacement before painting it over.

Do Know When to Use Primer

Interior House Painting

The primary purpose of primers is to make the surface more adherent to paint, but sometimes it’s not even necessary to use primers.

When To Use Primer:

  • Use primers on porous surfaces like newly installed drywall, bare wood, and some masonry like bricks.
  • When the surface is heavily stained.
  • When the surface is too glossy to hold paint.
  • When you’re painting a lighter color over a darker color.

When Not To Use Primer:

  • When your walls are clean without any stain and are still in good condition.
  • When you’re painting your walls a similar color, or you’re painting a darker color over a lighter one.

Don’t Be Overwhelmed With Color Choices

Color Choices

It’s easy to get confused and overwhelmed by the number of colors available. The best way to deal with this is to create a mood board. Get the existing colors of your furnishings and narrow down your options to two colors. If you’re still in doubt, you can ask the help of designers or color experts.

Do Know the Purpose of Each Paint Finish

Best Paint Sprayer

Finishes are usually based on individual preferences, but it can also be according to the purpose of a room.

Flat finishes like eggshell and matte are used mostly for ceilings and sometimes walls if you want to hide some imperfections. Flat finishes do well with routinely cleaning and are best for areas that are not frequently used.

Glossier finishes are useful if you want to highlight some features like mantels, moldings, and other architectural features. Gloss finishes clean easily and is suitable for high-use areas like kitchens and bathrooms.

Don’t Be Afraid to Get Help If Needed

Interior Painting

If the job seems too daunting for you or you can’t fit it into your schedule, consider getting the services of an interior painting company. They are experts and have good knowledge of what they’re doing and can do free estimates for you before you commit into a contract with them.

2 Responses to “Interior Painting Tips – Dos and Don’ts”

  • Thanks for pointing out that finishes are usually based on individual preferences, but it can also be according to the purpose of a room. I am thinking about repainting the interior of my house because I want to update the look a little bit and help give it more personality. I think that since it is a kind of complicated process it would be smart to look into hiring painters that could help me figure everything out and help make sure that I was choosing the right finish for things.

  • That’s a good idea to narrow your color choices down to two options. It can also be useful to consult with someone who knows a little about paint colors. My husband and I are hoping to paint our living area soon, but the ceilings are just too high for us to do it ourselves. We will probably have to get professionals to help with at least part of the project.

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