6 Ways to Paint Walls Without Messing Them Up

Paint Walls Without Messing

How Do You Paint Walls Without Messing Up?

If you want to do a quick refresh for your space but you do not have a lot of funds you can set aside for this mini project, consider repainting the walls and ceilings of your space. You can choose to repaint only a portion of your house like the living room area or the patio.

You can switch to a darker color for your bedroom to encourage a good night’s sleep. Painting a room is actually a quick and cheap way to spruce up your house. If you cannot afford to do a full-blown repainting job.

One thing’s for sure, once your project is complete, you will be glad to be rid of peeling walls and graying ceilings. Should you decide to also repaint the roof, you might need to contact one of the best painting companies for the painting job.

Prepare for Your Paint Job

As they say, preparation is always half the battle. Setting the area before you plunge right into painting mode can make all the difference. Finding out you do not have enough paint, or you forgot to purchase sandpaper can easily derail your project’s schedule.

Here are a few tips on starting the painting job on the right foot.

1.Do a general cleaning

Walls and surfaces, especially old ones accumulate not just dirt but also grime and debris. There’s nothing like putting on the first coat only to find out there is too much dust for the real color to show. Sand dust before you start painting can help you make the surface smooth and ready.

2. Get a Paint Sample

Paint once it touches a surface can be permanent and it would be hard to change your mind in case you suddenly decide you want another color for your walls. This is why you should test out different types and swatch all the shades to which you are attracted. Learn the perfect shade of white you are looking for.

3.Identify how many cans of paint you need

Sometimes, the exact color you want does not exist. You may need to combine certain colors to come up with the shade you want. However, this does not mean that you need to buy all the cans of paint. Unknown to most people, paints have a shelf life. They eventually go bad and an open can lasts 5 years at most if properly sealed and stored.

4.Buy high quality paint

It is normal to be drawn to a certain paint color. However, if you are planning to paint your entire home or a huge part of your house interior, you should also consider the quality of paint you will be using to ensure you get the best coverage. Benjamin Moore paints are popular with most homeowners.
Paints are composed of pigments, binders, additives, and solvents. Higher quality paint has pigments and binders that resist the damaging effects of sun radiation.

5.Prepare for dust

Expect that painting and other renovation activities can create toxic lead dust. If you are allergic to such particles, better to have someone do the project on your behalf.

6.Follow tips on painting baseboard over carpet

Be sure to have blue painters’ tape before you start painting walls and baseboards. Some carpets get permanently ruined with paint drips. Apply a strip of at least 2 inches on top of a carpet to avoid getting paint on the carpet.

Organize and Lay Out Your Tools

1.Get a good brush

To know if your painting brush is of good quality, look at its bristles which should have split ends, spring back in shape when flexed and should be half as long as the brush width.

2.Identify what type and size of roller you need

Basically, paint roller frames come in large 9-inch style and a smaller 4-inch style. The larger roller is best for big surfaces like walls. Use the smaller one to paint on doors and furniture.

3.Buy black sandpaper

This is ideal to sand between coats of finish and to polish smooth surfaces. Sanding the surface before applying paint is essential in preparing it for paint application and to remove imperfections and achieve a smooth surface. However, expect sandpaper particles to fly out of the surface while sanding.

Consider These Painter’s Tape Tips

1.Be on the lookout for low-tack blue painter’s tape

Even if you are not a pro at painting, buying what the pros use may help make the results better. 

Although you can use masking tape if this is not available in your local hardware, know that having the right kind of tape can make a lot of difference in the results of the painting job.

Painter’s tape does not leave any residue on the surface and will not pull off another painted surface when you remove it.

2.If you want to paint stripes on your walls, blue painter’s tape is your best bet

You can section off areas in the walls and add crisp sharp lines and stripes. This is a low-cost alternative that will get the job done. If you use masking tape, you will need to remove it immediately after a few hours. Another thing to look out for is, the masking tape cannot withstand water-based paints. It will crumble and result in paint drips. Painter’s tape is still the best choice for a sharp edge.

3.Score the edge of the painter’s tape you placed in your baseboards and run a blade along it

This is another pro tip if you want to prevent paint from being pulled up with the painter’s tape and from cracking along the paint line.

Keep Your Walls Smooth

1.Keep lint from being embedded on walls with wet paint

When using a new paint roller, one of the common problems is that it usually comes with lint which can stick to newly painted walls and surfaces. This will also remove any fuzz which might stick to your interior walls. Otherwise, you will need to purchase high grit sandpaper to remove the lint which can be especially tricky if you are using high sheen paint.

2.Avoid paint drips

If you are doing this for the first time, it will not be easy getting it right. It is best to prepare the immediate surroundings by putting newspapers over floorboards and covering furniture and light switches. Even if you are on a tight schedule, remember not to overload on your brush or roller with too much paint. You can wipe off excess paint from the brush or tap your roller to the roller pan before applying the paint. Keep a damp cloth with you so you can easily wipe off any drips.

3.Trap sanding dust on trim

Take note that a drywall should be dust-free before painting. If you were not able to do this, a thin film might cause the paint to flake from the surface. To do this, run a tack cloth over the surface. Wrap it over the head of a pole sander and run it over wall surfaces. A tack cloth is a cheesecloth with sticky resin. You can purchase this in most hardware stores. As an alternative, you can also use a microfiber dusting cloth.

Engage a Pro or a Friend

If you are taking on this home improvement project for the first time, chances are, you will not do a perfect job. While this is okay, it would be more efficient if you can find a service provider who can connect you with general laborers to assist you with the project.

For a simple mini home renovation, hiring licensed painters might not be within your budget. Know that you still have options. There are companies who can offer services for an affordable price.

1.Ask a painting contractor if he can take on half of the job.

Here’s a tip if you are on a tight budget, DIY half of the painting job. If you find a service provider who is willing to split the project and work alongside you, this will save you half of the costs for a full-service engagement.

2.Ask a friend if they have time to spare

You’ll need at least one person cutting in and another rolling walls to prevent banding. Perhaps you can convince a friend or relative to help you paint a room or at least one wall. Although you can always DIY on your own, if you will cover a lot of space and you want to avoid having it look sloppy, your best bet is to engage someone to assist you.

Clean Up

1.Know how to properly clean up accidental spills and drips

You will need to prepare a plastic putty knife. Once the paint dries, scoop as much paint as possible. Mix warm water with dish soap and put the soapy water in a spray bottle. Spray the solution on the spilled paint and wipe with cloth.
If you used latex paint, you’re in luck since it is water-based. When you accidentally spill or drip the paint, you can use absorbent cloth to wipe it.

2.Properly clean your paint brush

At the end of a day of painting, run your paintbrush under warm water and clean with soap. Use a metal brush to comb through the bristles to further remove paint. Pat dry to remove excess moisture then put back in its original packaging. You can also opt to buy a roller cover for your paint roller to protect it from dust and debris.

Do you Paint Trim or Walls First?

Although you can always freestyle and start painting wherever you feel like starting, if you are on a tight schedule, you have to plan ahead. Be strategic in choosing which wall surfaces to tackle first.

Some say the easier order of things would be to start with the ceiling then the wall and paint the trim last. The reason behind this is that it is much easier and faster to use painter or roller’s tape to cover the trim and protect it from paint splatters while you are painting the wall. Since the walls have much larger surface area, it would take some time before you can cover it with painter’s tape, not to mention a considerable amount of tape.

Do not fret, if paint drips get to the trim, you can easily cover it up when it is time to apply paint on it. You definitely would not want to tape both surfaces.

As a rule of thumb in knowing how much enough coat for one gallon of paint is, two coats will usually suffice. Do a thin first coat then follow up with a thin second coat. Once dry, move on to walls. The purpose of this is to ride the trim paint onto the wall a little, then cut over it in one go.

In the end, this is a matter of personal preference. The important thing is to ensure that the paint looks even and smooth in the end.

Other Tips to Help You Paint Trims and Surfaces

A lot of homeowners choose latex painting walls since the formulation is less toxic. Another added advantage of using this type of paint is that it is easier to clean up than oil-based paints. You do not have to worry that you will be compromising quality and design since latex paints are also available in high-gloss or matte, even eggshell sheen.

Additional Tips and Tricks if You Are Going to DIY

You can also consider these other painting tips and tricks:

  1. Ensure that you are working in an area with adequate natural light or where you can have easy access to light. This is important if you are mixing two different shades of paint to come up with the color you prefer.
  2. Fill in nail holes with spackling compounds to have a smoother surface. Once done, apply two coats of paint over it.
  3. Caulking using latex caulk, or a paintable latex blend can make a lot of difference if you are going for a seamless look for your wall.
  4. If you want to avoid paint blotches, you will have to spot-prime. Use a good seal for discolored areas or portions in your wall where your kids tried to practice on their writing.
  5. Dip the brush in paint. Wipe the excess and cut in wedges before you fill the center. Return for another brush stroke and coat of paint.

Prepare Before Painting Walls and Other Surfaces

If you want to achieve a smooth and consistent finish for the wall and other surfaces you will paint on, you have to start with a clean area. Remove any frames, hooks, screws, and nails then wipe grime and dirt with sponge and warm water.

Once the dirt is removed, fill holes, edges, and cracks. Allow the filler to dry before refilling to sanding.

Sanding is the key element of a painting job. Pay attention to previous paint finish to ensure your new paint will adhere to the painted surface.

Use primer especially if the wall has water damage or similar issues. Treat the surface accordingly for mold and mildew.

Now you are ready to start with your project.


Even if you are not a painting professional, you can still proceed with your refurbishing project by following painting tips. If you really want to achieve an aesthetic or overall look you may need to set aside a budget to hire pro painters. Keep in mind that wall paint is permanent and doing it all over again will take time and considerable effort, not to mention money.

If you can afford hiring a painting company and need extra helping hands, hire general laborers. They can sand walls, fill cracks and holes, paint trim and high ceilings, apply coat finishes and varnishes on doors, furniture, windows, etc. They can also do deck staining and exterior painting.

Most people find the clean up after the refurbishing paint job more difficult than the painting project itself. It is hard to know where to start when everything is a mess. Luckily, there are also companies who can connect you with general laborers who can provide cleaning services, furniture repair and wallpaper removal.

About kushalkittu

Priya is Home Impro Idea's Editor, where she covers historic homes, entertainment, culture, and design. She has written for publications including My Home Impro and Today Tech Reviews .

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