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How to fix 5 common painting problems

So you’ve just finished painting your house – or even a single room. It’s been an enormously gratifying experience (painting is good like that – it makes such an immediate impact!)

But then you step back to admire your handiwork and gah! You see a few problems: dried drips, obvious brush marks, and oh no … a bit of bubbling.

Never fear however – all these problems are easily fixed and once sorted, you’ll be very proud of the end result.

Removing Drips

Drips are usually caused by poor technique (sorry!) They normally occur when you overload your brush before applying paint to the surface. If you get to your drips while the paint is still wet – great! You just need to run your roller or brush over the drip.  If the paint has dried however, you’ll need to scrape back the paint drips with a scraper, sand the area to a smooth finish and then re-paint. The good news is, once the paint has dried it will blend beautifully without anyone knowing a repair job needed to be undertaken.

Smoothing a gritty finish

So you were in a hurry to get the paint job done and didn’t notice you’d managed to get some dirt on your brush right?? Now you have a gritty, rough finish in places.

If you want to save the paint you’re going to need to stir and sieve it to remove the impurities.

As for the gritty surface, this is easily fixed by sanding the gritty painted area, wiping it with a lint free cloth and then repainting with topcoat.

Removing wrinkled paint

Wrinkled paint occurs when you apply paint too thickly and then don’t allow enough time between coats for drying. It can also happen if you paint over dirt or wax, or paint in extremely hot or cool weather.

To fix the wrinkles you’re going to need to – you guessed it – sand it back, apply primer and let the primer dry completely before applying the topcoat.


There are a few reasons why paint forms bubbles (foaming) which then result in small concave depressions (cratering) when the bubbles break as the paint dries. The most common cause (and we’ve all done this) is to shake a partially filled can of paint too vigorously.  Another common cause is using a low quality paint and applying too quickly (especially when using a roller).

The simple solution? Purchase good quality paints. These are formulated to allow the bubbles to break while the paint is wet, allowing for a good flow and smooth appearance. And of course, use good technique by avoiding excessive rolling and brushing.

Brush and roller marks

As with foaming and cratering, brush and roller marks can be avoided by using good quality water-based paints.  The latest premium paints have ingredients that enhance paint flow. Brush and roller marks don’t seem to occur with this enhanced ingredient, which is good news for a smooth, even finish. When using a roller, be sure to use the  recommended nap length for the type of paint being applied. Use of a high quality brush is also important as a poor brush can result in bad flow and levelling.

Want to know more about any of these things? Your local paint shop is always a good place to start when it comes to getting the best advice.

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