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Keep Paint Fresh - Painting Tips & Techniques

By George Josserme

Page 1 of 1

• article synopsis •

One of the advantages
pros have over us is the experience that they gain with their hands-on work.

So, read this article before you open that new can of paint. You will not regret it.

"Paint a room any color that satisfies your whimsies as long as you tell a story or make music to the eyes."

-- Unknown Author

NO MATTER HOW CAREFUL WE MAY BE, our paint job may need touch-ups. Today's technologies allow to custom-mix paints to achieve colors that we want. Still, there is no guarantee that custom-mixed colors will match a previous color. However, the pros have valuable tips and painting techniques to achieve the closest that we can to a perfect match.

Tips and techniques the top professionals use are based on saving leftover paint as opposed to buy new paint. They insist that what we do ~and what we do not do~ is what considerably extends the life of that precious leftover paint. They insist pointing out that the quality of a paint job and efforts we invest are all dependant on what we do ~and what we do not~ from the moment we open a brand new can of paint.

Painting tips and techniques you are about to read signify the difference between a professional-quality touch-up job or having to repaint an entire surface because the paint does not match. Fortunately, today's quality paints may remain pristine for long periods of time IF we care.

• before you start painting •

» Prepare the work area by placing drop cloths and taping it to the floor before you open your can of paint.

» Since paint stores are good at stirring paint, it is unnecessary to stir it again. Just use the paint within 24 hours after you purchase it. If more than 24 hours went by, read below how to stir it again.

» Use only can openers to remove the lid. Other tools such as screwdrivers will likely distort the lid which prevents a good seal between the lid and the container.

• during the project •

» Exposure to air makes paint to thicken. Therefore, minimize the number of times you open the can; and do not leave the can open while you are painting!

» If you have to stir paint, prevent air bubbles getting in the paint by stirring gently. Once you are done, remove the stick and firmly close the can with its own lid.

» It is highly efficient to pour paint in a smaller container such as a Roller Pan. As you start painting, you remove paint from the edge of that container. If you want to take a break, replace the Roller Pan's lid if it has one. Also, place a disposable Shower Cap over the roller.

» Assuming you are painting with a water-based paint, you may need to add water to paint that thickened. If so, add water to the paint in a separate container such as a Roller Pan. NEVER add water to paint in the original can because it accelerates the process of mold growth.

» Do NOT place rollers or brushes directly in a can of paint or Roller Pan. Dust, lint, or material from a wall is transferred into an otherwise clean paint.

» After you are done painting for the day, it is recommended to discard paint left over in a Roller Pan.

• after you are done painting •

» To get a good seal, clean the lid's edge and the Roller Pan's edge. Then, close it.

» Since air inside a can dry your paint, it is highly recommended to place a piece of plastic wrap in direct contact with the surface of the paint BEFORE you close the can. This action prevents a hardened film from forming on the surface.

» To seal the can properly, it is best to use a rubber mallet. If you do not have one, you may use a hammer provided that you place a wooden block on the lid to prevent distorting the edge of the lid.

» If the can of paint is half full, you may consider to transfer it to one or two smaller containers to reduce air in contact with the paint. For this purpose, you may use clean containers that you already have or the ones sold at paint or hardware stores. Should container/s have a screw-in lid, it is recommended to use a coating of petroleum jelly on the screw to create a better seal.

» Label the container/s, and write the following on each of them:

1.- Name and/or number of formula.

2.- The room it was used in.

3.- The date it was purchased.

4.- The store it was purchased at.

5.- As a reference, place a dot of paint the size of a 25 cents coin on the lid. This reference paint prevents opening the container to see what color the paint is.

• where to store your paint •

» Since excessive heat makes paint react and to harden, it is highly advisable to store container/s of paint ~if possible~ in climate-controlled environment.

» Do not leave container/s with paint on concrete, stone, or tile. Moisture may condensate underneath the container. If it does, it may cause the metal to rust inside; and even a small amount of rust changes the color of the paint.

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