Once you’ve made the decision to give your house a nice new repaint, it’s time to nail the painting technique. There are multiple ways you can paint, such as using a brush, roller, or paint sprayer, and it’s important to consider your needs to find the best match for you. For example, whilst a paint sprayer is more efficient and gets larger jobs done quicker, it also results in more paint wastage. A larger project may benefit from the help of a paint sprayer, whilst you might want to use a brush if you’re tackling a project which requires attention to detail. If you want a helpful guide to applying paint with different applications - read on! We’ve put together this helpful guide with all our expert tips and tricks to help you get your job done easier and achieve the best results.
How to apply paint with a roller
If you want to apply your paint with a roller, you’ll need a tray, frame, roller cover and potentially an extension pole if you need to reach to heights. It’s also important to make sure you have the right nap cover for the job! Generally, 6-8mm nap covers are used for gloss and semi gloss paints, 10-12 mm is used for low sheen and flat paint on walls, while 20-32mm is used for rougher textures like concrete or textured walls.
DIY steps to using a roller
- Defuzz new roller sleeves before you use them by washing them in water
- Fit the roller to the frame
- Pour paint into the reservoir at the end of the roller tray, careful not to overfill
- Dip the roller lightly into the paint, ensuring that the paint covers less than half of the roller. Next, roll it backwards and forwards on the ramp of the tray to evenly distribute paint on the roller
- To apply the paint onto the surface, use a large zigzag pattern and then fill in the space with criss cross strokes
- After covering the surface, level the finish by using long, parallel strokes. Make sure you do this step before the paint has dried!
Why should I paint with a roller?
Like any method of paint application, using a roller has its pros and its cons. When compared to using a paint sprayer, using a roller has a much shorter preparation time. You don’t have to waste time setting it up, filling it with paint or connecting cords. It’s ready to go! However, you lose time when it comes to the paint application itself. Although faster than a brush, using a roller is significantly slower than a paint sprayer. If your project isn’t too big or you don’t have the pressure of time constraints, this may not be a problem for you.
When it comes to painting accuracy, a roller is a good way to go. If you’re doing a job which requires attention to detail, using a roller may be a good option. You don’t have to worry about stray paint getting everywhere, or the paint wastage (which is significant when spraying!)
How to apply paint with a brush
While paint sprayers are more efficient for larger jobs, using a brush allows you to pay extra attention to detail. This is particularly useful when you are painting window frames, skirting, doors, and moulding. It’s important to never try to paint over a surface that has partially dried as the brush will leave marks in the surface. By breaking the project up and working in sections, you can make it more manageable. It may be helpful to think of each large wall surface as an individual project and tackle them one at a time.
Steps to painting with a brush
- Before you begin, flick the bristles back and forth to remove dust. Moisten the brush with water if you are using a water-based paint, or turps if you are using an oil-based paint. It’s important that you remove any extra liquid before you begin painting
- Dip the brush in the paint, making sure to cover no more than half the length of the bristles
- When painting, you want to make sure not to over-press. The bristles should flex only slightly as you brush
- Paint with light, even strokes, starting from the top and working your way down
Is painting with a brush right for me?
While using a paint sprayer is much faster, going the traditional route with a brush has its benefits. It conserves paint, which is good for the environment (and your wallet!) When using a paint sprayer, a lot of paint is wasted as it drifts away in the air. Cleaning brushes is also much easier, it doesn’t require much time at all. If you don’t like the idea of extensive prep work, painting with a brush could be for you. If you have a steady hand, you may even be able to paint around fixtures such as windows without masking them off. You have the ability to pay extra attention to any problem areas which you wouldn’t be able to do with a sprayer.
How to apply paint with a sprayer
To achieve maximum results from your paint sprayer, there are a number of guidelines to take note of. Firstly, the distance between yourself and the surface you are painting makes a big difference. Between 10”-12” is the recommended distance you should leave between yourself and the surface you’re painting. Irregularities in this distance (even small ones!) can affect how the paint is applied. You can practice maintaining the correct distance before you spray, by holding the sprayer (with the tip guard installed) about two inches away from the wall, and moving the sprayer horizontally back and forth along the wall, whilst maintaining the same distance. Once you’ve got the hang of that, increase the distance to 12 inches and try again. When you feel comfortable, you can begin spraying with paint!
When it comes to holding the sprayer, it should be held perpendicular to the area that needs to be painted, otherwise, you may be left with runs, streaks, or uneven paint application. For maximum coverage, you should go back and forth but also overlap your previous swipe. It’s best to start with the edges of the walls at the top corners and steadily move your sprayer towards the middle of the room. If you make a mistake and spray too much paint on one area, it’s alright - just use a regular paintbrush to even it out. First finish all areas next to windows, corners, or where colours adjoin, and then go back and apply paint to large surfaces.
Benefits of painting with a paint sprayer
- Spraying is much faster
Compared to using a brush or roller, using a paint sprayer will allow you to complete your job in a much shorter time frame. This means that more jobs can be completed in less time, using less labour. This is particularly useful if you only have a short weather window! Paint sprayers also make quick work of a variety of different surfaces such as crown molding and “popcorn” or “cottage cheese” textures. You can still use a roller for these surfaces, but a paint sprayer will get the job done in the blink of an eye!
- Spraying improves overall finish quality
Sprayers produce an even coat of paint on all surfaces - leaving you with a high quality finish every time! The finish quality is particularly significant when it comes to the small details, paint sprayers have the ability to easily work into the narrowest crevices. Meanwhile, brushing or rolling detailed surfaces can result in pooled-up paint or drips.
- Spraying is very versatile
You can use a paint sprayer for a wide variety of interior and exterior jobs. They can also be easily transported around job sites! Paint sprayers are available in a huge variety of models, some of which are very compact and easy to transport.