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How to prepare a surface for painting

There are obviously a few differences between the quality of a paint job when a professional does it compared to an amateur.

But if you’re determined to paint your house yourself, there is one major area in which you can close the gap between a professional job … and the one you’re going to do. That area is in preparing the surface you are going to paint.

It goes without saying that if you are applying paint to a clean, flat surface, you’re going to get a much better overall result.

So how do we best prepare a surface for painting?

Step 1: Get the right tools together

For a standard wall you will need:

  • Sugar soap
  • Gap filler
  • Filling knife to apply the gap filler
  • Sandpaper
  • Masking tape or painter’s tape

Step 2: Get the surface nice and flat

This involves filling all holes with the gap filler, letting the gap filler dry for the recommended time, and then sanding it down so the surface is flat.

Step 3: Get the surface nice and clean

Sugar soap is great for this as it removes dust and grime from the surface that is to be painted.

Prepare the sugar soap solution using manufacturer’s instructions, and then wipe down the surface with the solution using a clean sponge. Then allow it to dry for the recommended amount of time

Step 4: Mask up!

Masking off things like skirting boards, light switches and power points will not only make your life easier while painting, it will give a much more professional result too

Step 5: Use a primer

If you want to ensure that you are laying paint down on the very best possible surface, then you need to use a primer. A primer not only smooths out the surface even more, it provides a base that paint likes to stick to.

While five steps might seem a lot to do before you even get to the fun part (the painting!), this is what a professional painter does before he will lay down any paint on your walls. So it stands to reason that if you want to achieve a professional job yourself, you should be ensuring you do the above too 🙂

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