How to Prep for Painting

How to Prep for Painting

There may be no quicker way to give new life to a room than repainting. A professional looking coat of paint transforms a worn and outdated space into a fresh environment. In order to get that professional appearance, however, it is essential to prepare properly. Before you pry the lid off that paint can, be sure to check over the Carolina Services Inc tips on how to prep for painting.

1. Removing Furniture and Fixtures

Begin by moving all lighter furniture to another room. If possible, remove heavy furniture as well, although simply pushing heavy pieces to the center of the room and carefully covering with a plastic tarp will protect your pieces too. Remove all wall and window hangings, including heat registers and any light fixtures that you can. Turn off your power and remove socket and light switch covers. If you plan on painting your doors, take off the doorknobs too.

2. Clean and Repair Walls

First, use a putty knife to gently scrape off bumps caused by dried paint or glue. Next, ensure that all nails and screw have been removed from the wall. Apply spackling, or joint compound, with your putty knife to small or shallow holes, feathering out the spackling gently. Larger holes will require self-adhesive spackling mesh, which comes in a role and is cut to fit over and around the hole. Place the mesh over the hole and apply a thick coat of spackling so that the mesh is evenly covered. Allow the spackling to dry before gently sanding to remove any ridges and applying a second coat of the compound. When the second coat has dried, lightly sand and apply a third, feathering out over a larger area than the first two coats. When the final coat has dried, sand the spot so that the outer layer is very slightly thinner and there is a smooth, natural looking seam.

Now you are ready to clean your walls. Going over the area with a damp rag will remove dust and dirt, but oily marks – the result of hands pressed against walls or grease flying while cooking – will remain glossy. This sheen will still be evident under a new coat of paint unless you use a very mild detergent to remove the oils. Wipe down the wall with a damp (water only) rag after you have used detergent so that the soap does not leave a residue.

3. Cover and Tape

With the power still off, carefully cover the outlets with wide tape. Lay plastic tarp over the floor. Tie plastic grocery bags around remaining light fixtures. Finally, use painters tape to cover the edges of molding, the ceiling, and walls or spaces you do not wish to paint.

Naturally, you must remove wallpaper prior to paint application. Most wallpapers can be peeled from top to bottom, but will leave behind a thin layer of paper and adhesive. This can be removed by spraying a mixture of wallpaper remover and hot water on the  wall and scraping with a wide putty knife. Be careful not to damage the drywall underneath when scraping! This step would be best completed between removing the furniture and cleaning and repairing the walls.

When you are ready to give your area a new feel, Carolina Services Inc is here to help. No matter what size the task, we are prepared to help you create the perfect space for you. Contact us today to learn more about the planning, designing, construction, and maintenance services we offer!

Photo Courtesy of: Gary Cycles