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14 House Painting Hacks to Help You Paint Like a Pro

A do-it-yourself house painting job doesn’t have to mean uneven brush strokes, missed spots, or paint splatters everywhere. If you’re looking for useful techniques to do some home improvements with a fresh coat of paint, take a look at these useful hacks that will make your next paint job an epic success.

 

1. Clean Wall Surfaces Before Painting

clean wall surfaces before painting

Before you begin your house painting journey, prepare the wall surfaces by cleaning them thoroughly to remove dust, cobwebs, and other imperfections. When cleaning, start by dusting the walls and wiping them using a clean pad with warm water. Once done, dry the walls with a towel to eliminate the remaining moisture. 

2. Prevent Excess Paint Drips Using a Rubber Band

paint drips using a rubber band

When you dip your brush into the paint, excess paint often gathers on the bristles, resulting in drips when you lift the brush out of the paint can. Prevent this by stretching a rubber band horizontally over the opening of the paint can and using the rubber band as a convenient ledge for wiping off excess paint from the brush. Not only does this help reduce waste and paint spots on the floor, but it also keeps the edges of the can clean, making it easier to reseal when not in use. 

3. Cover Paint Trays

cover paint trays

Let’s face it, cleaning out messy paint trays is a time-consuming task. Minimise clean-up time and mess by covering the tray with a plastic bag. Make sure that the bag covers the entire inside of the tray, including the edges. Once the bag is in place, pour the paint directly onto the tray as you normally would. The plastic bag serves as a barrier between the paint and the tray itself.

4. Wait for the Right Weather

wait for the right weather

Rainy days typically come with higher humidity levels in the air. Painting in humid weather prevents the paint from drying quickly and affects the paint’s ability to adhere properly to the wall surface. 

Painting on a dry, scorching day is not advisable either. The paint could dry too fast, resulting in blisters, cracks, or bumps. 

5. Use Petroleum Jelly to Protect Areas You Don’t Want to Get Painted

petroleum jelly to protect areas

If you want to prevent door knobs, screws, and window locks from sticking, another painting hack is to apply petroleum jelly. Using a cotton swab, rub petroleum jelly on the small parts of your home that you don’t want to get painted. The petroleum jelly acts as a barrier between the painted surfaces and helps prevent them from sticking together when the paint dries.

6. Clean Your Brushes Using Vinegar

clean your brushes using vinegar

Generally, we use warm, soapy water to rinse paint brushes, but that isn’t enough to get all the paint off the brush. Vinegar does all the magic to clean paintbrushes and remove stubborn paint residue. Just soak the paintbrushes in a container filled with vinegar for several hours or overnight and get your trusty old brush ready for a new paint job! 

7. Keep Brushes Nice and Soft with Fabric Softener

nice and soft with fabric softener

You might have left your paint brushes unwashed overnight and found them the next morning stiff and rock hard. If you want to keep your brushes soft, add a cap of fabric softener to a container of warm water and soak the brushes for a minute. Swirl the paint brushes around in the fabric softener, ensuring that it is evenly distributed throughout the bristles.

8. Not Done Painting? Put Your Brushes and Paint Rollers in a Plastic Wrap!

brushes and paint rollers in a plastic

Painting rooms properly can frequently require a few days, and cleaning brushes and paint rollers between sessions can be a tedious job. Instead of washing each time, cover your brushes and roller tightly with plastic wrap to prevent them from becoming stiff and drying out. 

9. Paint Perfect Straight Lines Using Tape

paint perfect straight lines using tape

Masking tape, or painter’s tape, is a popular tool to help you paint perfectly straight lines. All you have to do is carefully apply the tape to the surface and get the paint in all the right places. When it’s time to remove the tape, start peeling at a 45-degree angle to minimise paint damage. You can also use a hair dryer to blow some heat on the tape and soften its adhesive before you finally peel it off the wall.

10. Reduce Paint Fumes with Vanilla

reduce paint fumes with vanilla

Paint fumes are smelly, so to neutralise the odour, add a tablespoon of vanilla extract to a gallon of paint. Vanilla extract contains aromatic compounds that have a pleasant and strong scent, which can help mask the smell of paint fumes. 

11. Choose VOC-Free Paints

choose voc free paints

Volatile organic compounds, or VOCs, are harmful gases that are emitted from processes and products, including paint. High VOC levels, when inhaled, can lead to adverse health issues such as headaches, nausea, and damage to the liver.

Use paints that contain low to no VOCs; while they might cause more, they are known to be safer for you and your family. 

12. Squeeze More Paint Using a Putty Knife

putty knife

Once you’re done painting, place the paint roller over the edge of the paint can and scrape the roller down using a putty knife. You’ll be surprised with the amount of paint that the roller can hold, which you can use on your next painting project!

13. Use Slow and Steady Strokes When Painting the Ceiling

use slow and steady strokes

Slow and steady strokes rather than moving the paint roller around in a random pattern will allow you to achieve a smooth finish and reduce the risk of paint dripping onto the floor.

14. Turn Acrylic Paint into Spray Paint

spray paint

Turn your acrylic paint on hand into custom spray paint using a spray paint medium kit, which you can find at most craft stores. Just pour an equal amount of spray paint medium and acrylic paint into a bottle. Shake the bottle to thoroughly mix the paint, then attach the provided sprayer to the bottle's top and you’re ready to go! This trick is useful when you need a specific paint colour that isn't available in spray form.

Whether you're looking to refresh a room or redefine your entire home ambience, the possibilities are endless when armed with a paintbrush, a vision, and some smart hacks from us! Ready to paint? Let’s get all the work done! 

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