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Indoor Painting Tips & Techniques

To Avoid Lap Marks, Roll the Full Height of the Wall and Keep a Wet Edge

Lap marks are those ugly stripes caused by uneven layers of paint buildup. They occur when you roll over paint that’s already partly dry. (In warm, dry conditions, latex paint can begin to stiffen in less than a minute!) With these tips learn how to paint interior walls.

The key to avoiding lap marks when learning how to paint interior walls is to maintain a “wet edge,” so each stroke of your roller overlaps the previous stroke before the paint can begin to dry. Here are some painting tips:

  • To maintain a wet edge, start near a corner and run the roller up and down the full height of the wall, moving over slightly with each stroke.
  • Move backward where necessary to even out thick spots or runs.
  • Don’t let the roller become nearly dry; reload it often so that it’s always at least half loaded.
  • Keep the open side of the roller frame facing the area that’s already painted. That puts less pressure on the open side of the roller, so you’re less likely to leave paint ridges in your stylish wall painting ideas.

Mix Several Cans of Paint in a Large Bucket for a Consistent Color Throughout the Room

Paint color may vary slightly from one can to the next. If you have to open a new can in the middle of a wall, the difference may be noticeable. Mixing the paints together eliminates the problem. It’s best to estimate the amount of paint you’ll need and mix it in a 5-gallon bucket (a process called “boxing”).

Here are some good painting tips:

  • When coverage is difficult to estimate, add more rather than less when learning how to paint interior walls. You can always pour the leftover back into cans.
  • For large jobs, use the bucket and a roller screen rather than a roller tray. It’s much faster to load your roller with the screen than to use a roller pan.
  • Simply dunk the roller into the paint bucket, then roll it along with the screen until it stops dripping.

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