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  • Writer's pictureJalal Lewis

Common Home Painting Mistakes

Check out the most common mistakes of most DIYers when painting their homes. To help you avoid these mistakes, we share some pro-tips to prevent these problems from happening for your next home painting project.

Failure To Do The Proper Prep Work

This is the most common mistake of DIYers as they do not realize its necessity. It is important to prepare the surface correctly using the right materials to achieve a successful home painting project. Never paint in a dirty wall as the paint will not adhere to the surface. Imperfections should be repaired and sand it before painting otherwise the gaps, cracks, and holes will still be visible even after painting. Primer is necessary if you are painting over a very bright, very dark, very saturated color, wood trim, fresh surfaces, or new drywall.


Avoid too many brush works when working on cabinets, wood, or doors. Brushing on the same surface over and over again will produce an unsightly brush mark.

Bumping the Ceiling

A little distraction can result in bumping the ceiling with the paint roller, this creates additional touch-up work. To avoid such mistakes, roll on a horizontal strip of paint parallel to the ceiling then roll up vertically to the horizontal strip.

Selecting The Wrong Paint Color

Choosing the right paint color is quite a challenge especially for do-it-yourselfers. Before buying the paint, make sure to buy paint color samples and apply them to your walls to test and see the actual color in different lighting throughout the day. Peel-and stick paint samples are also available, it lets you easily move the color samples from one room to another. Having color samples provide you with peace of mind when deciding on the perfect paint color.

Buying Low-Quality Paints

Whether you will do the painting yourself or hire professional painters, make sure to invest in high-quality paints. We recommend Sherwin Williams or Benjamin Moore, these brands are both durable and good quality paints. Avoid buying inferior quality paint brands. Instead of saving money, you'll need to spend extra bucks to buy more paints due to the additional coats necessary for low-quality paints.

Extreme Temperatures

Never paint at the freezing temperature because it won't dry properly. The paint will come off easily as it will only partly dry. On the other hand, painting with high temperature is bad as well. The paint will dry too quickly before you can able to spread it evenly on the surface resulting in bubble formation. Plan your painting project ahead and make sure to check for the weather forecast for the next 2 days.

Spray Painting Without Covering Everything

It is important to mask off the entire house in all the areas that you do not want to get paint on such as windows, floors, handrails, bookshelves, fireplace, furniture, etc. Create plastic barriers to protect the other areas of the house from paint over spraying and to keep away dust from entering into those areas. If you are working outdoors, don't spray on a windy day as the paint may be blown away by the air to your neighbor's home.

Painting Over Glossy Finishes

Do not paint over surfaces that already have coats of glossy paint or varnish as the paint won't properly adhere and you will end up with a bad-looking finish. Rough up the surface by sanding or wiping it with a liquid deglosser to remove paint and stain.

Painting in A Low Light

Do not paint without having a bright light on the interior surfaces, ensure that there is enough natural or artificial light in the room to have even paint application in the wall.

Using Too Much Paint in the Roller or Brush

Using a lot of paint can cause a dripping mess, applying a thicker layer of paint does not mean you do not need a second coat. If you do this mistake, your paint job will look heavy, will not dry evenly, and you waste a lot of paint.

Not Allowing the First Coat To Fully Dry

Do not rush in the application of the second coat, allow the first coat to dry overnight to be on the safe side. You have to patiently wait for the paint to dry and remove the painter's tape.

Choosing the Wrong Sheen

Avoid choosing paint with a high sheen when painting walls that are not perfect as this will highlight the imperfections or defects in the surface. Ensure that that surface is very smooth and properly prepared if you wanted to use semi-gloss or gloss sheen.

Rolling in One Direction Only

Keep a wet edge to avoid overlapping marks in the ceiling. Move fast from one five or six-foot section to another to ensure that the paint along the edge does not dry before rolling in the adjoining section. Roll again in each section at a right to the first roller direction.

Not Using Primer

Primer makes the paint adhere to the surface. It seals pores in unpainted surfaces such as drywall and wood. Applying primer over new surfaces seals the original materials so that the paint does not soak into them requiring extra coats. If you paint the surface without priming it first, you will need more coats for adequate coverage.

Buying the Wrong Brush

Do not buy the cheapest brush. Choose a high-quality brush that is durable and can be reused for future home painting projects. A good brush will make the job finish easier and better outcome.

Failure To Estimate How Much Paint Needed

You do not want to run short out of paint in the middle of your paint project. Make sure to properly estimate how much paint you needed.

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