Interior Painting – Frequently asked questions

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Can I paint directly over wallpaper?
No. Wallpaper can be painted over with the proper preparations. Be sure to remove any loose wallpaper, scuff/sand the surface, then apply interior oil-based primer.

Can I apply latex paint over oil based paint?
Yes. Be sure to prepare the surface properly before painting. Oil-based paints should be sanded to a flat finish before painting. After rinsing, apply Dutch Boy® oil-based primer and apply desired latex paint.

Can I apply paint directly over a semi-gloss paint?
No. Semi-gloss paint must be dulled to a flat finish by sanding*, allowing proper adhesion. Removing or disturbing old paint from interior or exterior surfaces by sanding, scraping, abrading or other means may produce dust, debris or fumes that contain lead. Exposure to lead dust, debris or fumes may cause brain damage or other adverse health effects, especially in children and pregnant women. Structures built before 1978 should be tested by a licensed inspector prior to removing or disturbing old paint.

Can I use exterior paint on the inside of my house?
No. Exterior paints are formulated to be more flexible to withstand temperature and climate change.

How can I best prepare my walls before I paint?
Walls that have never been painted should have a recommended primer applied before painting. For previously painted walls, thoroughly wash them with a mild soap and water solution, then rinse with clean water. If your existing surface was painted previously with semi-gloss paint, the surface should be lightly sanded to a duller finish. If the walls have not been painted in five years or longer or are stained then primer should be used.

How much paint do I need?
To achieve one-coat coverage, paint should be applied at a maximum of 400 square feet per gallon. Rough or textured surfaces may require more paint. On these areas allow for 125-300 square feet per gallon.

How do I prepare the surface?
As a general rule, all surfaces should be clean before painting. Remove any loose, peeling paint, and/or any other substrate that is on the surface*. Scrub all surfaces to remove all dirt, grease, oil, etc. Rinse surface well and allow to dry. Apply appropriate patching material to cracks, nail holes, or other surface imperfections, sand smooth, and remove sanding dust.

*If your existing surface is glossy, dull surface by sanding or use an abrasive cleaner. Remove any residue.

How do I take care of my freshly painted surface?
Freshly painted surfaces may be washed after 30 days. Avoid touching, wiping, or wetting any freshly painted surface for 30 days. After that time dirt and stains may be removed with a mild, non-abrasive cleaner and water. Do not place objects on windowsills and shelves until paint is thoroughly dry.

How long should I wait before applying a second coat of paint?
A second coat of latex paint may be applied 6 hours after the first coat. With oil-based paint, you should wait 24 hours between coats.

Should I paint the trim before or after I roll the walls?
The wall area around the doors and windows and along the ceiling should be cut in with a brush, this will prevent the wall from having an obvious and unsightly picture frame effect. Then, the main part of the wall can be painted with a roller, rolling into these areas.

Why do I need to use a primer?
Primers are specifically formulated to seal porous surfaces, block stains, as well as to insure the proper adhesion of the topcoat and produce the best possible coverage.

What is the proper order to follow when painting a room?
When painting a room, the ceiling should be painted first, followed by the walls, then the trim (including doors and windows) and finally the baseboards.

When should I apply?
Room and surface temperature should be between 50 and 85 degrees. Paint dries best between 65F and 85F. Allow at least 4 hours of drying time before recoating.

What is the proper rolling technique?
Fully load the roller with paint by dipping the entire cover deep into the tray of paint. Carry as much paint to the surface as possible. Make a letter “V” in a small 2 foot by 2 foot area with a generous roller load of paint. Fill in the “V”, spreading the paint evenly from left to right. Lightly smooth out with downward motions. Repeat “V” with a freshly loaded roller for every 2 x 2 foot area.

Handy Tips, Advices, Ideas & Warnings

When painting, protect your hands and face with moisturizer. Cleanup will be easier and the moisturizer will prevent paint from seeping into the pores.

Before starting to paint with enamel paint, lightly coat your hands and underneath your fingernails with any name brand hand cleaner. After the painting is finished, your hands will be easy to clean.

Line your paint tray with aluminum foil. When it’s time to clean up, just roll up the foil and throw away.

To stop paint from dripping, punch a few holes in the rim of the paint can. When the brush is wiped against the edge, the paint flows back into the can. The lid covers the holes so the paint won’t dry out.

To remove lumps from paint: Cut a piece of screen to fit the inside of the paint can. Set it on top of the paint and let it float down to the bottom of the can. It will take all the lumps with it, trapping them at the bottom of the can.