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My Blog

Paint is not paint!

OK, so you've decided to paint your house.  Could be you need to paint the outside of the house, or maybe you would like to change the color scheme of the interior.  Maybe you have decided to just do it yourself, I mean how hard could it be? 
You have equipped yourself with brushes and rollers, a paint try and a dropcloth.  Next (after off course you have decided on color), you need to go buy your paint.
 
Now, here's where a little knowledge comes in handy.  What kind of paint do you need?  If you don't know your paint, paint is paint, but the result is often not what you expect.  Fact is, paint is not paint.  Not only are there differences in sheen (appearance), but also in density and coverage.
 
1.  SheenFlat paint has no sheen at all, and is simply that - flat.  Where do you use flat paint?  On ceilings, or if you don't want any lustre at all.  Be careful about painting your walls in flat paint, however, you cannot wash flat painted surfaces, so marks will not be able to be removed.
Egg Shell has a very slight lustre and can be washed.  This is good for interior and exterior painting.
Satin has a slightly higher lustre (not quite as shiny as satin fabric), and can be cleaned easily.  Recommended for interior painting and trimwork.
Semi Gloss has more lustre (shiny-ness?) than satin, and is even more washable.  Many times doors and trimwork are painted in semi-gloss for that reason.
Gloss is the shiniest of all.  Highly reflective and washable, this is used on items such as furniture.
To paint a bathroom, we recommend you talk to your local paint store about specialty bathroom paints.  Valspar makes a special paint for bathrooms that is durable, washable, and will not run when you take those hot showers.
 
2. Density:  This refers to the thickness of the paint.  Many manyfacturers make excellent paints, but some paints are more "watery" than others.  Make sure you get information on the paint you are buying, and here cheap paint can spell trouble.  We use Valspar almost exclusively, since it is a good, dense paint that goes on smoothly like butter.  Sherwin Williams is our next choice, along with Behr.  But there are other excellent brands available.
 
3. Coverage:  This refers to how much space a can of paint will cover.  Valspar will cover at least 300 square feet of space, so find out how much your paint of choice will cover, and buy enough paint for your project.  Suggestion: if you are going to use more than one can of paint, "batch" them before you start painting.  That means you need to mix them all together before you begin painting.  No matter how good the paint store is in getting you the color you want, there is always a slight difference in color in each can.  You do not want to run out of one can in the middle of the room, then start another can.  If there is a slight difference in color, it will be noticeable after you have painted the wall.
 
One final tip:  If you have a dark wall that you want to change to a lighter color, you may have to prime the wall first, or the dark color will "bleed" through.  We recommend KILZ primer with stain blocker for this.
 
Happy painting!
 
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