When painting, keep a damp rag handy to clean up as you go. It's much easier to clean paint that is still wet.
If you're going to paint again tomorrow, just wrap your brushes or rollers in plastic and set them aside in a cool place. If your painting chores are done, clean your tools thoroughly. Latex washes off tools and trays with warm water. Oil-based paint requires a thinner or mineral spirit. Wear plastic gloves and work the solvent into bristles or nap and rinse until the solvent is clear. Once dry, store brushes hanging bristles down in their original wrap or paper. Rollers should dry and store standing on end.
In painting, holidays are areas which were not covered by paint. These missed areas will haunt most people for years to come. So don't rush. Watch it dry Latex paint takes between one to six hours to dry. Oil requires eight to 24 hours to cure. The time depends on the climate and moisture in the area you are painting.
When painting from a paint can, give it a half turn periodically throughout the job. Dipping the brush into the can alternately on one side of the can and then the other automatically keeps the contents stirred at the surface and prevents a surface film from forming. Also occasionally sweep the tip of the brush back and forth through the paint, especially with a fast-drying latex.
As part of your pre-painting preparation, check the weather forecast. The perfect conditions for painting are a mild day with temperatures between 50 and 80 degrees, little or no wind, and low humidity. Avoid painting if rain or very high humidity is predicted within 24 hours. Stop painting early enough for the surface to dry before evening dew sets it.
It is always a temptation to take short cuts. You may choose to paint over wallpaper either because you don't want to take the time to remove it, or perhaps the paper hides cracks and defects in the walls of your older home. Most professionals will suggest that you remove the paper because it may peel or the wall covering texture will be difficult to paint over.
If you find lumps in a can of paint that you need, you can "push" them out. Cut out a circle from a piece of wire screen slightly smaller than the can's inside circumference. Put the screen circle on the surface of the paint. With a little help it will sink to the bottom of the can, taking the lumps with it. Another way to salvage lumpy paint is to strain it through an old nylon stocking.
Using a tinted primer before painting is a great way to get the exact color you’re looking for in less time – especially if you’re using a deep, vivid color. Tinted primer can be tinted to a variety of gray shades selected for their ability to improve hide and achieve the desired depth of color and intensity.
Like tile, most paint will differ slightly in each lot produced. If you plan to use the same color thoughout your house, it's a good idea to purchase as much paint as you can at one time. This will avoid any deviations in the paint color and save you an extra trip to the store.
Instead of putting a paint smear across the outside of a can to mark the level of paint left inside (which can be messy and obliterate the label), use a rubber band instead. Put it around the can and roll it down to the level of the paint. Just by glancing at the rubber band, which is visible all the way around, you will know how much paint is left.