Common Mistakes to Avoid When Repainting Your Walls

Brown wooden ladder beside painting materials.

In terms of return on investment, painting is unrivaled as a home or business improvement project. One of the best ways to give your home a fresh look is to paint the walls. Nonetheless, due to the misconception that painting is simple, some do-it-yourselfers end up doing a poor job when they get into it.

Producing professional-quality results is trickier than it looks. There are common mistakes to avoid when repainting your walls if you want a professional-looking result, whether adding a pattern or simply using the same color.

Accidentally Picking the Wrong Shade

One of the most common mistakes to avoid when repainting your walls is choosing the wrong color. Choosing a paint color from a sample chip instead of from the wall is a typical mistake that leads to a botched job. Every single one of us is guilty of this. Using the store’s color chart as a guide, you select the perfect hue for your walls and place your paint purchase. But when you get it home and put it on your walls, it looks nothing like the color you chose.

Never buy a gallon of paint without first asking the store to mix a small sample to take home and test on the wall to ensure the color and sheen you want. Look at it at different times of day and night and under different types of lighting. If you don’t like it, you’ve only lost a few dollars and the time it would have taken to return to the paint shop.

Gray standard color book near green eraser.
Be careful when choosing which color you’re going to use.

Excessive brushing or dipping

It’s common for amateur painters to overload their brushes by dipping them too far into the paint. When doing a home renovation, make sure you do it right. This method of painting almost always ends in disaster. One possible consequence is a dramatic rise in the number of paint puddles on the ground. The paint will dry into the bristles and the handle, making it difficult to restore to its original condition. Professional painters know not to soak more than half of their brush at a time.

When painting walls, doors, or furniture, use as little brushwork as possible to achieve the smoothest finish. Paint the area quickly with a half-full brush. Next, give it a few strokes to make it uniform. Repeatedly brushing over a freshly painted surface can cause streaks and an uneven finish.

Improper paint storage

Paint could peel under these temperatures. Most paints must be stored inside, away from light, between 41 and 95 degrees Fahrenheit. Therefore, you should store canning jars made of metal in a dry place away from sources of humidity to prevent rusting. There are many items you can’t put in storage that people don’t know about, so removing the things that don’t belong is a must. Especially if you’re storing your paint there.

Cover the top of the open paint can before securing the lid if you plan to store it in a shed or garage. When you use it again, dust and other particles won’t be able to settle into the paint and damage it.

Paintings should not be left out in the elements during the transition between seasons, as this can cause the paint to dry out or crack, depending on the temperature. Oil-based paints have a better chance of surviving a harsh winter because they freeze at a much lower temperature than water-based paints.

Making Do with Cheap Rollers and Paintbrushes

Another mistake to avoid when repainting your walls is using cheap equipment. According to Zippy Shell of Greater Philadelphia experts, low-quality rollers and brushes will be immediately noticeable after painting begins. Brushes of high quality are long-lasting, provide flawless coverage, and may be reused often with proper maintenance. Investing in high-quality brushes is not a waste of money. High-quality painting tools and materials are engineered to hold less paint and spread it more uniformly.

Using a low-quality paintbrush might result in lost bristles, and a low-quality roller can make painting more of a chore. The same goes for low-quality paint sprayers, which may not cover the area uniformly or stop working before the job is done.

It’s vital that you tidy up your tools as soon as you’re done painting. Cleaning your rollers and brushes as soon as possible after use is crucial for keeping them in pristine condition for your next painting job.

Paint roller in a white paint canister.
Investing in better painting equipment is strongly advised.

Not caring about the weather and temperature

Keep the weather in mind before beginning a painting project, as paint does not fare well in hot temperatures. Water-based paints will need more time to dry in high humidity. Painting can’t dry evenly in the cold, which leads to flaking and splitting, so painting is one of the changes you should make before winter. Painted surfaces exposed to high temperatures may develop bubbles or dry too quickly, resulting in an unsatisfactory appearance.

You can find the paint’s optimal temperature in the manufacturer’s instructions. Therefore, use this if the paint isn’t sticking properly. It’s possible that you’ll have to make some adjustments – things like moving the work to a different day or buying a portable heater or air conditioner.

Overuse of painter’s tape

Using painter’s tape ensures straight lines and crisp corners. Even though taping usually yields professional-looking results, it can cause paint to peel if left on for too long.

After you’re done painting, wait about an hour before removing the tape. However, you are not completely out of luck if you wait too long and the paint starts to peel. Carefully score the edge with a razor blade as you peel back the tape. The glue can be heated with a hairdryer and peeled away with your fingers, or you can use the dryer to heat it first.

Man and woman renovating a room.
Painter’s tape is essential to ensure straight lines but be careful not to overdo it.

Leaving out the primer

If you want a professional look, priming the surface before painting is essential, yet some people can argue that it isn’t.

Primer paints are used as a foundation coat to ensure a smooth finish later. One of the mistakes to avoid when repainting your walls is forgetting the primer. Always use a primer before painting to cover up flaws, hide stains, or change the surface’s color. It’s the first step toward a beautiful finish and a more manageable painting process.

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