5 Painting Shortcuts That Aren’t Worth Taking

calander Dec 27 , 2020 user-iconAnderson Painting
Man painting house Raleigh

Painting projects can be time-consuming and daunting, especially for those without experience. No one would blame you for wanting to get it over with as quickly as possible. However, cutting corners won’t provide you with the solution you’re looking for. Indeed, as is the case with most avenues in life, taking shortcuts when performing a paint job will often end up setting you back even further. To be more specific, skipping or speeding through important preparation steps can yield poor and uneven coverage. If you ask reliable residential and commercial painters about their process, you’ll likely discover that they don’t overlook any detail during the job, and the results will speak for themselves. So, in order to ensure that you end up with the outcomes you desire, let’s outline five painting shortcuts that aren’t worth taking.

Painting Shortcuts to Avoid

1. Neglecting to Clean Your Surfaces

Leaving your surfaces covered in dust, dirt, and debris is never a good idea, but it’s especially detrimental when you’re about to paint them. Painting over filthy surfaces is akin to applying makeup over unclean skin -- the coating will not properly adhere to the surface itself and the grime will simply be held in place between the surface and the paint until it eventually forces the paint to peel away. This supposed shortcut, then, will actually make it necessary to repaint your surfaces not long after your previous paint job. In the long-run, it’s much more cost-effective and less time-consuming to thoroughly clean your surfaces (via scrubbing or power washing) and let them dry before painting so the paint job remains adherent, even, and beautiful for many years to come.

2. Sticking to a Single Coat

Quality paint doesn’t come cheap, and if you’re facing a large project, these material costs can certainly add up. To save yourself some cash (and time), you might purchase the bare minimum amount of paint needed to apply a single coat of paint to your surfaces and/or lay it on real thick as a substitute for multiple coats. Either way, you’ll end up with a layer that’s either too thin to offer full coverage or a thick, drippy layer that takes a long time to dry and yields a drippy, splotchy, uneven coat. The proper move is to purchase enough paint for at least two coats and apply them as instructed -- doing so will result in full, even coverage.

3. Not Letting the Previous Coat Fully Dry

Even if you have the foresight to buy enough paint for multiple coats, you might try to rush the process and apply the next coat right after you’ve finished applying the last one. Not so fast. Painting over a coating that hasn’t completely dried yet can loosen the previous coat and/or interfere with overall adherence and dry times. If you’re in the zone, you might not want to wait the 2-4 hours required between coats, but you’ll thank yourself for being patient. Use this necessary interval to take a long lunch break, watch a movie, do some cleaning, etc.

4. Nixing the Mixing

Whether it’s due to negligence or laziness, failing to properly mix your paint can balloon into a major painting disaster. Simply put, mixing paint before the application is essential for activating the paint’s adhesive properties and achieving its intended color. So, by skipping this step, you might not only end up with a poorly-adherent coating -- the paint might not even yield the color you expected. Either way, you’ll be sent back to the drawing board, and that’s certainly not worth taking this “shortcut.”

5. Not Taping Your Edges

Painter’s tape should be a staple in your arsenal, especially when it comes to interior painting projects. This handy tool makes it easy to mask off surfaces you don’t wish to paint to you end up with straight, even lines and no bleed-through. Painter’s tape can also be used for design purposes if you’re painting stripes or other patterns. No matter how steady your hand or keen your eye may be, do yourself a favor and tape off the relevant areas before painting -- it will save you plenty of time and energy on cleaning and touch-ups.

Stop Short of Taking Painting Shortcuts

If there’s any instance in life where it’s okay to take shortcuts, painting is not it. If you truly want to get the job done quicker, plan your project ahead of time and practice your skills. The more you do it yourself, the better and faster you’ll get. Otherwise, hire a reliable Raleigh painting contractor to tackle the job more efficiently. At Anderson Painting, our decades of experience and skilled contractors allow us to get the job done on time, every time, without cutting a single corner. To learn more about us and all we do, call today at 919-610-1855 or email us at info@andersonpaintingnc.com!

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