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The Power of Prep Work – Make Painting Easier

The secret to professional painter services lie within the prep work. If you are tackling a DIY paint project, take advice from your local professional painter, JMA Painters, and do NOT skip out on proper preparation. Choosing not to prep your work area and surfaces before slapping paint onto the walls or exterior is like attempting to build a house while simultaneously laying the foundation. The end result will be a big mess. We cannot stress enough the importance of proper prepping before you begin. Below are some reasons not to skip this step of the process. 

Why Is Prep Work Important?

Prep work will protect your items from potential paint spills, ensure your finished product is smooth and neat, will avoid potential problems from arising in the future (such as cracked paint) and more. Although it takes a lot of time and work, it makes the process of actually painting much faster and smoother and we promise you will be much happier with the end result. If your home or commercial building potentially has lead based paints, the prepping process is even more important as neglect to do so could result in serious health issues. For more information on Lead Renovation, Repair, and Painting projects, and how to properly prep your work area, view this post “Lead RRP – Everything You Need to Know.”

What Do You Need To Prep For Painting?

The supplies needed for prepping your painting surfaces and work area will vary based on the project. For example, if you are repainting the exterior of your home, you will want to pressure wash the surface in advance (far enough in advance for the surface to fully dry). Pressure washing the interior of your home is obviously not a great idea, so a simple washcloth would suffice. For simplicity purposes, we will focus on interior painting service supplies; some items to have handy for your prep work include but are not limited to: 

  1. Cleaning supplies 
  2. Plastic drop cloths
  3. Sandpaper 
  4. Painters tape 
  5. Drywall repair supplies 
  6. Screwdriver to remove outlet covers (put tape over the outlets for safety)

Steps For Paint Prepping

Again, we will focus only on interior paint jobs for this post. We will cover exterior painting service prep in another post to follow.

  1. Move Furniture & Cover – Either remove furniture from the work area completely, or move all items to the center of the room and cover with a plastic drop cloth. This will protect your items from any paint drips throughout the process. 
  2. Clean Surfaces – next you will want to clean your surfaces. Working with a clean surface will ensure proper paint adhesion.  At minimum, we recommend using a washcloth with water to remove dust and debris from the surface. If any areas are starting to mold, you will need to do a more in depth cleaning job on that area as mold will continue to grow through new paint and will be harder to resolve down the road.
  3. Cover the floors with plastic drop cloths
  4. Remove your outlets and cover with tape for safety purposes. If you are painting the ceiling, it is also a good idea to remove the ceiling fan blades and cover the fixture. Be sure to cut the electricity in that room if you choose to cover the fixture. 
  5. Repair/fill any holes in the walls – if you have any uneven surfaces, a fresh coat of paint will only highlight them. If you want a professional looking finished product, repair drywall as needed. We even recommend filling nail holes or sanding any surfaces that are not smooth. This step may seem like it’s slowing your process down but it is extremely important to not skip this step.
  6. Tape off or cover all hardware with plastic bags. Essentially you will want to tape off anything you do not want painted.
  7. Prime. Once you have completed everything above, it’s time to prime. It isn’t always necessary to prime, but if you are painting on bare drywall, stained or repaired areas, bare wood, high gloss finishes or if you are doing a drastic color change, you should prime your surface before applying paint. 

If you have completed all the steps above you are then ready to paint! Painting is the fun part, but it’s much more enjoyable once you have properly prepped. Don’t skip that step, and if it’s too daunting of a task for you, consider hiring a professional painter to complete your project. JMA Painters would be happy to quote out your project. Contact us for your free quote.  

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