Preparing for Interior Painting
The home interior painter’s tools may take some time and investment to put together, but the end result will be worth it. Tools and materials needed to prepare your walls include items that protect the painter as well as get the job done:
- old clothes
- head protection (cap or scarf)
- rubber gloves
- ear protection
- surgical mask (available at hardware stores)
- safety glasses
- fine-grit sandpaper
- paint scrapers
- putty knife
- detergent and ammonia or tri-sodium phosphate (TSP)
- primer or adhesive pad
- orbital sander
- wallpaper steamer
- adhesive drywall tape
- hand sanding block
Remove pictures and any sort of hangings, including their nails from walls, and move furniture out from the walls several feet or out of the room if you can. Whatever’s left should be covered with a drop cloth. Turn off the electricity so you can remove light fixtures, switch plates and outlet plates, and wrap all disconnected light fixture wires. Once all wires are safely wrapped, you can turn the electricity back on.
Now comes the hard part – thoroughly cleaning the walls and ceilings. Paint will adhere much better to clean walls and there’s less chance of bubbling. And if there’s any wallpaper glue residue left on the walls, the result is an interesting pattern under your paint that you hadn’t planned on. Walls should be washed with ammonia and detergent, or a cleanser like Spic and Span, or tri-sodium phosphate, which is available at your hardware store. Wear your rubber gloves when working with these solutions. After a meticulous scrubbing, walls and ceilings should be rinsed thoroughly with water. Do this twice if after drying you feel residue on your surfaces.
Mask off all woodwork trim and cover the windows with newspaper and your masking tape. Be sure that your tape edges are straight. You’ll need to mask the perimeter floor also. Do not remove the tape for at least 24 hours after painting to avoid pulling up part of your paint job with it.
On never-before-painted surfaces, priming is a must, but it’s even a good idea on already painted walls. It minimizes lap marks and seals the surface, which means a longer-lasting, better-looking paint job. Surfaces previously painted with enamel or gloss don’t need to be primed.
Now you’re ready to paint.