The Importance of Prep Work for Painting

February 1, 2018

Painting is one of the most powerful and budget-friendly ways to change the overall appearance of a room. A fresh coat of paint can, in fact, change the mood, aesthetic, and even the sense of size of a room. That is pretty impressive! Unfortunately, many homeowners are overly eager to see the new hue they have chosen for the walls and begin the painting process before the walls have been properly cleaned and prepped. Given that a majority of coating failures, such as peeling, bubbling, and discoloration are due to not having properly prepared the surface, it is a good idea to find out what prep work should be done before you start. Here is a quick list of prep work that should be done prior to even lifting a brush or roller.


  • The Wipe Down – Give the walls, heat registers, corners, ceiling, and window sills a thorough cleaning before you start painting the room. Do this simply with a mixture of a gentle detergent/soap and water. Don’t introduce any cleaning chemicals before you start painting. Once everything has been wiped down there should be no dirt, debris, cobwebs, or grime left on the walls or ceiling to interfere with the adhesion of the paint.  Be sure to let the walls dry completely before painting.


  • Fix Holes, Scratches, and Dings – It is fairly common that homes have uneven walls, holes from the nails of hanging pictures, or even the occasional divot from children playing or furniture hitting against the walls. Fill and repair these areas, along with sanding, so that the surface is even before you begin. One of the first places that paint begins to peel or bubble is around openings in the wall or near chipped drywall.  Some homeowners also caulk the windows at this point to allow for a better look.


  • Remove Furniture – If at all possible remove the furniture in the room before you begin painting. Not only will you appreciate being able to move freely around as you work but it means you avoid any accident that could cause spills on your furniture.


  • Cover the Floors –  For the same reason that you remove the furniture, you will want to cover the floors with some sort of protection. We suggest a cotton or canvas covering that tends to be less slippery than plastic coverings.


  • Gather all Materials – Before you begin be sure you have the tools you will need, including rollers, brushes, wet towels (for accidental drips), primer, paint, goggles, extension arms (for ceiling painting), and painters tape if you plan to use it.


Do you have questions about the prep work for the room(s) you have chosen? Call Jerry Enos Painting at 978-546-6843, or visit our website to find out more.


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