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HomeHomes
Published: 8/22/2008

How to Choose the Right Painting Supplies

(ARA) - So you've decided to tackle a painting project. Maybe it was the drab color in the kitchen that finally got to you, or the dated design in the bathroom that did nothing to brighten your mornings. A new coat of paint will freshen it up without breaking the budget, but do you have the right supplies? Getting the correct tools before you start can save you time, and, in the end, produce a higher-quality result.

"Painting is one of the easiest and most affordable ways to give your home's interior a boost," says Anne Horst from Wooster Brush, a company dedicated to producing quality painting products. "By choosing the right supplies up front, you'll make your project look its best, even if you aren't a frequent painter."

* Choosing a Paintbrush

There are two things you need to know in order to select the right paintbrush for the job: the type of paint you'll be using and the surface you'll be painting.

When it comes to choosing a brush, paint is divided into two categories. In the first category you have water-based coatings. Look for a combination of these words on the label: latex, acrylic, waterborne or water-based. The second category is oil-based coatings. Look for these words: alkyd, oil, solvent-borne or oil-based.

For water-based coatings, choose a nylon/polyester synthetic brush. Nylon/polyester brushes are durable so they're great for painting rough surfaces, they maintain their shape to paint precisely in hot weather, and they clean the easiest. However, for oil-based coatings your best choice is natural bristle. Black and white bristle brushes have the softest tips to virtually eliminate brushmarks.

To choose the right brush size, you should select the one you think will "fit" the surface nicely. Larger brushes carry more paint to provide maximum coverage with fewer dips to refill. Many people think smaller brushes are easier to control, but if you select a high-quality brush in a slightly larger size, you'll find the job goes much faster, and the finish will be smoother, too.

* Using Rollers with Extension Poles

Try using an extension pole for painting walls as well as ceilings. Many pros use a short pole, one to four feet long, to paint walls with controlled, sweeping strokes. Horst points out, "It reduces fatigue because you can use two hands to hold the pole, instead of just one on a roller frame grip. Your stronger arm muscles do the work together." Invest in a pole that is durable, straight, and lightweight, and you'll use it for years.

* Organizing Paint Containers

Paint trays come in a variety of materials, most commonly metal or plastic. Choose one that is at least eleven inches wide with a sturdy, ribbed bottom to load the roller evenly. Also look for one that works with a liner. Form-fitting, disposable liners make cleaning fast and greatly extend the life of the tray.

* Picking a Paint and Primer

Use a primer on the surface if it is newly constructed, patched, stained by water or smoke, prone to mildew, rusted or aged. Your paint store can provide recommendations. Primer really helps to seal and even-out the surface. The paint will go on smoother, adhere better and last longer.

Although it's tempting to buy the cheap paint to save a couple bucks, purchasing quality paint is really an investment that is worthwhile. More expensive paints have larger amounts of pigment and therefore provide better coverage and hiding properties. What takes four coats with a cheap paint might only take one with a higher-end paint, actually saving you time and money. Courtesy of ARAcontent



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