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Gilbert Painting Tips

Triple Seven Quality Commercial Painting is not only dedicated to providing the best services to customers that choose us for their commercial or residential painting needs, but also to assisting those that still prefer to perform such painting services themselves. Although Triple Seven Quality Commercial Painting can provide professional services in less than half the time that it takes the individual to perform the job, the following are some tips that you can use to paint like a professional and get the best out of your commercial or residential property. Many of these tips are applicable whether your canvas is the interior or exterior of your property and most require only cheap additions to your painting arsenal.

Keeping Track of Paint Colors

Some paint colors are so close that it can be difficult to match your previously painted home or business with the paint at the store when you need to repair scratches or touch up the surface. If you keep track of the color in a notebook or on the paint can, there is still a danger that you will lose your note keeping device in the months that it can take before repainting is necessary. However, one of the ways that you can make sure that you keep track of the paint color and type that you need is to write it on the back of a light switch panel. By doing this, you will likely discover the information while removing these covers before repainting - even if you have forgotten where you wrote it down. Many people actually go as far as to write down the serial number for easy access later.

Using Paint Primer

One of the reasons that many amateur paint jobs end up looking dull or listless once they are dry is that the painter fails to use a primer before applying the first coat of paint. Primer is actually one of the most important parts of the process. It keeps stains or imperfections from the deeper layers of the wall from showing through your paint, helps your paint to spread evenly to the wall without significant blisters and increases the time between paint jobs. It also helps the layer of paint appear much more bright and vibrant.

If you are painting with a lighter color over a darker color, one of the ways that you can make sure you hide the underlying color is by mixing a small amount of the paint with the primer before applying it. This is only possible if both your paint and primer are of the same type (latex or oil). You do not need much paint in the mix but you should be able to tell that the primer is shifting towards the paint color.

How to Paint the Interior Of Your House

  • Measure the rooms or house to calculate how much paint you will need: you will get approximately 300sq ft per gallon. Multiply length of all walls times' height. Example is a 10'x 12' room with 9' ceiling: 10+12+10+12= 44x9=396sq feet of wall space. Divide 396 by 300=1.3 gallons. 10x12= 120sq feet. Divide 120sq feet by 300= .4 gallons for the ceiling.
  • Go over the colors of paint you want and look at swatches of sheens you would like. Such as semi gloss, satin, eggshell, flat. Ceilings = flat, bathroom, utility rooms, closets, baseboards, doors & door jams = Semi Gloss, ceilings in those areas semi gloss as well. Rest of home = flat, eggshell, or satin. Remember the darker the color the more wall imperfections show.
  • Make sure you prep all surfaces that you want to paint.
  • Scrape away flaking paint, fill holes and cracks with spackle or painters caulking.
  • Make sure you have the right tools.
  • Scrappers, brushes, rollers(pick out what nap you might need such as 1/4, 1/2, 3/4 also roller handles, caulking, spackle, caulking guns, paint screens or roller pans, drop clothes, tape and ladders.
  • Start you painting process just remember to cover up anything that you don't want painted.
  • Start at the top and work down.

Finding a Good Time to Paint Exteriors

When you decide to paint the exterior of your home or business, pay attention to what the weather will do during the day before getting set up. For the best drying times, avoid painting when the temperature is below 60 degrees F or when it exceeds 90 degrees F. In addition, avoid painting when it is raining or windy outside. The rain can dilute your paint before it has a chance to dry. Wind can blow dirt onto your fresh paint or cause it to dry far too quickly. If you can, avoid painting in direct sunlight. Not only will this make painting a much more tiresome task, it will cause other adverse effects as well.

Making Clean Up Easier

Before pouring paint in your roller tray, consider lining it with aluminum foil or a plastic liner. You can throw those materials away after the paint job is complete and reduce the amount of clean up time necessary. Also, try to avoid using the side of a paint brush when covering the corners of your room. You can increase the life span of your flat paint brushes and make the job cleaner by sticking to the flat side - brushing in downward strokes from the corner. If two colors are meeting in that corner, you can use masking tape on the dry surfaces to avoid splatters or bleed over. Once the other surface is dry, you can switch the tape to the other side and complete the job.

If dirt or other debris gets inside the paint can while you are painting an exterior, there is no need to despair. You can cut some spare wire screen (from a screen door or window is best as it is cheaply available at your local home supply store) and place it on the top of the paint. It will not immediately sink. However, as you continue painting and the level lowers, the screen will continue to drop and take the debris with it. Once it gets to the bottom, you can simply throw the can away - but you still will have saved a great deal of paint from the garbage can.

How To Paint The Exterior Of Your Home

  • Measure the house to calculate how much paint you will need: you will get approximately 200sq ft per gallon. Rule of thumb is to measure the length of all walls and multiply by the average height. Stucco cannot be rolled properly it must be sprayed. Many home improvement stores like Home Depot rent sprayers.
    • Go over the color of paint you want, typically you will choose a flat paint. You can use eggshell on the exterior and it will be more durable but test a small out of the way spot first to make sure you like the finish.
    • Make sure you prep all surfaces from the fascia to the stem wall (foundation).
    • You will need to power wash the entire house to get all dirt and flaking paint off. You can rent also from Home Depot.
    • Typically you may have to scrape the wood fascia, scrape the stem wall, and fix any stucco that is cracking or has fallen off.
    • Fill all cracks in the wood fascia.
    • Tools and materials: scrappers, ladders, spray rig, paint brushes, paint shield, 3inch rollers and roller frames, tape, masking film and paper for the windows and doors, shovels to pull away dirt from stem wall.
    • Start your painting process from the top to bottom meaning fascia first, body then stem wall, and doors last.


    The secret to a successful paint job is choosing materials carefully. Here are some guidelines:

    1. Choose the right color. Take paint brochures home and pick the color during daylight in the room you’ll be painting. Buy a quart of the color, paint part of the wall, and live with it before making a final decision.
    2. Don’t be afraid of color! Buy a quart of something daring. Splash it on a wall. Give yourself a couple of days to adjust. Trust me, you’ll love it!
    3. Cheap paint is expensive. You’re more likely to save money with name brand paint. We always recommend Glidden and Sherwin Williams. Cheap paint usually requires two coats to cover what’s on the wall, thereby doubling your cost. Low-quality latex paint also gets chalky as it ages and needs to be repainted sooner.
    4. Get the right paint finish. Paint comes in glossy, semi gloss, eggshell, satin, and flat finishes. Use glossy or semi gloss on woodwork. In areas likely to get dirty—kitchens and baths—use semi gloss or eggshell on walls. The glossier the paint, the more durable and easier it will be to clean. Flat, on the other hand, hides wall defects and touched-up areas better. Still unless you have a real important reason to use flat, use eggshell as a minimum.
    5. Match, don’t mix. Simplify your life. Use the same color paint on trim and walls even if they’re not the same sheen. You’ll have to do far less masking, and touch-up is simpler since paint splashed from the walls onto the trim (or vice versa) is virtually invisible.
    6. Pick the right applicators. Select a short-nap roller for smooth walls and a longer nap for stucco, concrete, and textured surfaces. Make sure the roller has slightly beveled ends that won’t drag paint onto adjoining surfaces. Use an all-nylon roller for latex (the water in latex swells natural fibers). Similarly, choose a natural bristle brush for alkyd and synthetic bristles for latex. Look sideways at a brush. A good brush comes to a dull point; a cheap one is cut square. Look at the bristle ends. Split ends (properly called flagged ends) help spread paint for a smoother finish.

    12 Rules Professionals Follow:

    Primer comes before paint.

    Primer not only provides a good surface for the paint, but it also brings out the paint’s true color.

    Paint like a pro.

    Painting is your chance to show off your skills. Use an edge pad for clean lines around doorframes, ceiling edges and corners.

    Preparation matters.

    Paint won’t stick to the wall if you haven’t taken the time to prep. The surface must be clean, non-glossy and in good condition.

    Give the walls a sponge bath.

    Washing your walls from top to bottom is always recommended because paint sticks better to a clean surface.

    How much paint do I need?

    How much paint will it take to cover your walls? Most paint manufacturers claim 300 to 400 sq.ft. per gallon. We find 250 is a better number if you are applying paint generously.

    Put your sandwich bags to work.

    Slip a small plastic bag over your doorknobs and tape the edge to avoid getting paint in places it wasn’t meant to go.

    Don’t look back.

    Once an area starts to dry, it’s best to leave it alone. Going back over it can leave marks and color streaks in the paint’s surface.

    Buy a good drop cloth and use it for years. Unless you’re trying to paint your floor, we recommend covering it up with a drop cloth. They are reusable again and again.

    Take away the shine.

    Paint doesn’t always adhere to glossy surfaces. We recommend using a light grade sandpaper to take the gloss off the surface so your new paint sticks like it should.

    Rollers for big areas and brushes are for edges. Small rooms can feel gigantic when it comes to painting. A roller will do a better job than a paint brush in less time.

    Spare the wall plates.

    Before you start, remove all wall plates and tape off light switches and electrical outlets. You’ll get high marks for professional-looking results.

    Fix the drywall first.

    You’ve completed your mission to fix every imperfection with patching compound. Now, make sure it’s dry. Then sand smooth, prime, and you’ll have a surface good enough for any pro.

    How to Paint a Room:

    1. Stir paint before using. If paint is old and smells bad, replace it. Pour paint into a coffee can for trim work and cutting in, or a roller tray for ceilings and walls. Paint ceiling, walls, and then trim. As you work, tape off areas with painting tape. Buy a spout for the paint can; it will keep the rim neat.

    2. Use top-quality nylon/polyester filament brushes for latex; natural China bristle for oil paint. A 1-in. or 2 1/2-in. angular sash brush is good for details and cutting in; a 2 1/2-in. straight brush, for wide trim. Buy quality rollers—short nap for smooth surfaces and minimum 1/2–1in. nap for textured walls. Tape off the ceiling, and then cut in all around it. Paint ceiling with a roller, using a sturdy extension handle.

    3. Let the ceiling paint dry thoroughly; then prepare to paint the walls. Choose a wall to begin with and cut in on this wall only. First cut in around the ceiling, floor, doorways, windows, and trim. A wheeled paint pad is easy to use, requires no taping, and better matches a roller’s texture. Still, a sash brush may be needed in places. If working alone, cut in edges for only as large an area as you can go over before cut-in area dries.

    4. Immediately after cutting in, roll that area with paint. Apply paint in a pattern to the upper part of the wall and roll it out. Repeat for the lower part, blending areas to avoid lap marks. Be sure to work with wet edges to avoid a “bordered” look. Depending on the color and type of paint, you may need one or two coats. Tinting the primer to half the formula of the finish paint can reduce the number of required coats.

    5. Finally, paint the trim. Tape it off or use a broad knife, paint shield, or other straightedge to keep edges neat. Clean applicators when they become overfull or messy and after use. Options for cleaning include rinsing, running the roller over a plastic roller scraper, or spinning held over lined garbage can.

    Choosing A Ladder

    Different people, projects and tasks require ladders of varying styles, sizes, grades and materials. Style, size, duty rating and material are the four key elements to understand when choosing the right ladder for the job.

    When working indoors, a stepstool, stepladder, platform or multi-purpose ladder is usually recommended when you need a reach of two to eight feet. Outside, a taller stepladder, multi-purpose or extension ladder is often more appropriate for jobs requiring a reach of thirteen feet or more. Different styles of ladders are designed to keep the user safe and productive when climbing.

    Choosing the right size or length is just as important as the ladder style. One of the most common and potentially dangerous ladder selection mistakes is purchasing a ladder that is either too short or too long. (Remember you can use a pole extension to reach many places with your feet still firmly on the ground).

    Choose the Right Extension Ladder

    Height to Gutter or to Support Point

    Buy This Size Ladder (include a 3-foot extension above roof line)

    9-foot max.


    9 to 13 feet


    13 to 17 feet


    17 to 21 feet


    21 to 25 feet


    25 to 28 feet


    28 to 31 feet


    Choose the Right Stepladder

    Max. Height You Want to Reach

    Buy This Size Ladder (assumes vertical 12-inch reach)

    7 feet


    8 feet


    9 feet


    10 feet


    11 feet


    12 feet


    14 feet


    16 feet


    18 feet


    20 feet


    Choosing The Right Roller Cover

    Rollers can be used to paint large, flat surfaces in much less time than it would take using a brush. Selecting a roller cover depends on the type of paint (latex or oil) and the surface you're painting (smooth, rough or textured). Roller Covers are available in multiple fabric types (synthetic, natural or blend) to match the type of paint used and in several pile depths appropriate for different surfaces.
    Fabric Types

    • Synthetic covers (nylon, Dacron or polyester) - ideal for most latex paints.
    • Natural covers (mohair or sheepskin) - should be used with oil-based paints. If used with latex paints, the water in the paint may swell the fibers, causing them to become matted.
    • Blended covers (polyester / wool blend) - combines the extra pickup of wool with polyester for longer life. Can be used with all paints.

    Pile Depth

    Pile depth refers to the thickness of the roller cover's fiber nap. It's essential to choose the right pile depth for the surface you're painting. Most retailers offer six pile depths to meet almost any painting project:

    • Very Smooth – for metal doors and plaster
    • Smooth – for drywall
    • Semi-Smooth – for drywall
    • Semi-Rough – for rough wood and acoustic tile
    • Rough – for textured ceilings and stucco finishes
    • Very Rough – for concrete block, brick and fences

    Pad Applicators

    • Pad applicators are versatile enough for use inside or outside your home. These painting tools are ideal for exterior siding, concrete block, shakes, shingles and fences. They also work well on interior walls, ceilings, floors and doors. 
      Pad applicators are perfect for latex or oil base paints, stains, sealers or wallpaper paste. Pads produce a smooth paint finish without the spatter that rollers sometimes cause.
    • Paint edgers are a version of pad applicators that eliminate the need for masking. They're designed for use on ceilings, doors, windows and baseboards.

    A Sheen & Finish Primer:

    Flat- Its matte appearance softens a room and helps hide surface blemishes, making walls look smooth. This finish, which cleans easily with a damp sponge, is ideal for:

    • Adult bedrooms
    • Dining rooms
    • Formal living rooms
    • Ceilings

    Satin- With its slight gloss, this finish offers the benefits of a flat finish with added cleanability. It works best for high-traffic areas such as:

    • Halls
    • Woodwork
    • Children's bedrooms
    • Family rooms

    Semi-Gloss- This lustrous, durable finish is perfect for areas that get cleaned frequently, such as:

    • Kitchens
    • Bathrooms
    • Utility area
    • Closet doors
    • Trim

    Gloss - This extremely hard and shiny finish provides a rich, smooth luster and is excellent for:

    • Wood trim
    • Cabinets
    • Doors
    • Furniture

    Flat Enamel- A no reflective appearance that helps conceal surface imperfections while providing some washability.

    Matte- This flat finish is great for hiding surface imperfections, while its angular shine helps make walls smooth and washable

    Egg-Shell- Great to use for walls, egg-shell finish has a slight hint of shine and holds up better to cleaning.

    Low-Luster-A smooth, subtle sheen that's durable and easy to clean.

    Medium-Luster-This higher-gloss finish is perfect for doors and trim.