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Blog

August 7, 2018

Is the old paint on your front door scratched and peeling? Don’t pay to replace it – repaint the door with these pro tips from The Paint Centers.

Lay the Door Flat

Drips and runs are a real concern when painting doors. To ensure the smoothest finish possible, lay the door flat on a sawhorse and remove all the hardware.

Prep Before You Prime

Even the highest quality Benjamin Moore paint won’t last if you apply it to an oily, dirty surface. That’s why you should thoroughly clean the door with warm soapy water and a sponge. Allow the door to dry completely before moving on.

If the door has been repainted before, it might have layers of paint built up. If the door rubs against the jamb, this could be the time to remove the paint and start from scratch. For wood doors, use a sharp carbide or stainless steel scraper. For metal doors, use sandpaper. For fiberglass doors, use a chemical stripping agent.

NOTE: If the door was last painted before 1979, have it checked for lead before you scrape or sand.

Whether you simply clean the door or remove layers of paint buildup, the final preparation is to fill all dents and scratches with spackling compound. For deeper holes, use two-part filler or epoxy wood filler.

Prime the Door

Primer is important because it prevents dark colors from showing through, seals porous wood fillers and helps the new paint adhere better. Prime the entire door – spot priming could make the topcoat appear blotchy.

After the primer dries, check for flaws and cover any you find with more spackling compound. Sand and re-prime these areas, feathering the edges to blend with the first layer of primer. Then, sand the entire door by hand with non-clogging 180- or 220-grit sandpaper. Vacuum up the sawdust and wipe the door with a damp cloth to remove all residual debris.

Paint the Door

The door is finally ready for paint! Choose a high-quality interior or exterior paint from Benjamin Moore, depending on whether you’re repainting your front door or an interior door. If the door has windows or panels, paint these areas with a brush first. Then, apply the paint smoothly and evenly with a high-density foam mini roller. Allow the first coat to dry, sand the door with the same technique you used after priming and apply a second coat. Assess the finish and apply a third coat if needed.

Take Precautions When Hanging the Door

Even after the paint is dry to the touch, it can stick to the doorjamb or weatherstripping and peel off when you open the door. To prevent this, wait at least two days before closing an interior door. If it’s an exterior door, cover the weatherstripping with painter’s tape to prevent sticking.

For more pro painting tips, please visit the Paint Centers website, or stop by one of our Michigan locations to stock up on the supplies you need to repaint a door.

 

July 24, 2018

Have you set your sights on repainting your bedroom? Your motivation level is high, and you’re ready to get to work! You don an old t-shirt and jeans and have a smile from ear to ear because you envision a beautiful finished product. But hold on just one minute – before you apply your first brushstroke, think about your wellbeing for a moment. You can avoid accidents and mishaps by following these painting safety tips.

Wear Safety Gear

Prepping your walls for paint could require sanding, stripping and cleaning. Protect yourself from flying sawdust and chemicals by wearing goggles, gloves and a dust mask.

Ventilate the Room

To ensure the best possible air quality after painting a room, always choose low- or no-VOC paint. This gives off fewer volatile organic compounds that can cause dizziness, respiratory distress and other symptoms.

Even with low- or no-VOC paint, we still recommend ventilating the room while painting. This means opening a window, if possible, or at least leaving the door open and aiming a fan inside to increase airflow.

Use a Sturdy Ladder

One of the most common painting injuries is falling off a wobbly ladder. If you plan to climb a ladder during your painting project, make sure it’s stable. Metal ladders are more reliable than wooden ones. Also, look for safety features such as non-slip feet and heavy-duty spreaders with a maximum load capacity that can easily bear your weight.

Avoid Plastic Drop Cloths

Canvas is the best material for protecting the floor during your project. Paint won’t seep through and, unlike plastic, canvas isn’t slippery. This is good news whether you’re simply walking around or setting up a ladder on top of the drop cloth.

Don’t Paint Near Open Flames or Heat Sources

If the paint you’re using has flammable solvents, the fumes may combust when introduced to heat or flames. This makes it incredibly dangerous to paint with a fireplace or natural gas water heater or furnace operating nearby. Turn these appliances off if they’re located in the room where you’re painting. Also, refrain from smoking, lighting matches or burning candles until the paint on the wall has dried.

Clean Up Properly

Dispose of any soiled rags, paintbrushes and rollers so pets and children can’t get a hold of them. Save unused paint for making touchups in the future. If you need to dispose of water-based latex paint, allow it to harden completely before throwing it away. Adding cat litter to the paint helps it dry out faster. Oil-based paint is considered hazardous waste and must be disposed of at a recycling center.

Here at the Paint Centers, your safety is our number one priority! Get more pro painting tips on our website or stop by one of our locations in Flint or Grand Blanc, Michigan today. We’ll help make sure your next painting project goes smoothly.

 

July 10, 2018

Are you thinking about undertaking a painting project? Whether you’re revitalizing an old dresser or rethinking your living room, it’s useful to know how to use paintbrushes and rollers to the fullest. Follow this advice to ensure a smooth, beautiful finished product.

Painting with a Brush

Thanks to their relatively small size, you can usually dip a paintbrush directly into the can, eliminating the need for a tray. Paint like a pro with these tips:

  • Choose a brush that’s appropriate for the task at hand. Precision painting requires a small brush, whereas painting a large wall calls for a broad, thick brush.
  • Dip the brush into the paint about a third to halfway up the bristles. By keeping the metal ferrule free of paint, you help prevent dripping and keep your hands clean.
  • Allow excess paint to drip from the brush for a few seconds, and then lightly tap both sides of the brush against the interior of the paint can. Your instinct might be to scrape excess paint onto the lip of the can, but this makes a mess and removes more paint from the brush than necessary.
  • As you begin painting, make sure you keep a wet edge and proceed from that point forward. Apply long, even strokes, and refill the brush using the above suggestions when the paint begins to streak and fails to cover the surface completely.

Painting with a Roller

Rollers are perfect for avoiding brush marks and painting large surfaces quickly. You’ll need a paint tray, liner, roller frame and extension pole for painting high up on walls and ceilings. Take your paint rolling skills to a new level with these tips:

  • Select a roller that’s appropriate for the job. Shorter naps are suitable for smooth surfaces, while longer naps are needed for highly textured walls.
  • Attach the roller to the frame. Then, pass the roller across a long strip of tape to remove excess lint.
  • Line the paint tray with a disposable liner to simplify the cleanup process. Stir the paint and fill the tray
  • Avoid submerging the roller. Instead, drag some paint from the edge of the well onto the roll-off area. Use several quick forward strokes to begin coating the roller. Drag more paint from the well onto the roll-off area, and repeat until the roller is fully saturated, but not dripping. It may take a few minutes to complete the initial loading.
  • Apply paint to the wall in long, V-shaped strokes. Refill the roller before it gets too empty. This prevents the fibers from compressing, which forces you to spend more time reloading it.

For more pro painting tips, please visit the Paint Centers website. You can also stop by one of our Michigan locations to stock up on paint including Benjamin Moore paint, one of the most celebrated and reputable brands in the industry, and painting supplies and get answers to your remaining questions from our knowledgeable staff.

 

June 25, 2018

Repainting the walls can completely change the look and feel of a room. While hiring a professional painter ensures a job well done, you may want to undertake the task yourself. If you do, make sure you don’t commit these common painting mistakes.

Failing to Prepare the Surface

If you desire a beautiful, durable end product, you can’t simply start painting – you must prep the walls to receive paint by doing the following:

  • Dust the walls.
  • Fill cracks and irregularities.
  • Clean any grimy areas with water and mild soap.
  • Allow the wall to dry completely.
  • Clear away any peeling paint.
  • Sand the walls if the existing paint has a glossy sheen.
  • Apply primer, especially if you’re painting directly on drywall or applying a light shade over a dark color.

Skipping Painter’s Tape and a Drop Cloth

Some homeowners think they can be extra careful and avoid the need for painter’s tape and a drop cloth. But all it takes is one tiny slip for paint to drip onto the carpet or smear the door frame. That’s why it’s better to be safe than sorry.

Once the wall is cleaned and prepped, lay down a protective canvas or tarp on the floor, especially near the walls. Then, tape off window frames, door frames, crown molding and baseboards. This will leave a clean, crisp line when you peel off the tape at the end.

Painting the Walls Before the Ceiling

If you’re painting the ceiling too, do so before you paint the walls, especially if you’re using a different color. If any accidentally drips, there’s no harm done – you can simply paint over it once you move on to the walls.

Starting the Job Without the Proper Tools

In addition to using protective equipment like painter’s tape and a drop cloth, you need all the right painting gear to perform a job well done. Don’t get started until you have all of the following:

  • Primer
  • High-quality paint (we recommend Benjamin Moore for a beautiful finish with fewer coats)
  • One roller and roller frame per person helping to paint the room
  • Extension pole
  • Paint tray and disposable liner
  • Paintbrush for corners and edges

Forgetting to Keep Touchup Paint

Once the job is finished, you might assume you can dispose of any leftover paint to avoid the need to store it. However, since paint colors differ slightly between batches, you should save extra paint for touchups. You’ll be glad you did when smudges, stains, scratches or scrapes mark up your walls in the future.

Now that you know how to avoid common painting mistakes, all you need is the right paint color and necessary supplies. Stop by the Paint Centers in Flint or Grand Blanc, Michigan to stock up on everything you need. We offer high-end Benjamin Moore paint in countless colors, varieties and sheens. If you still have questions, trust our expert staff to provide knowledgeable answers as you shop.

June 12, 2018

Not all paint is created equal. If you’re planning on painting the walls of your home, you undoubtedly want the results to last. This means you should choose good paint from the start. Don’t compromise on quality to save a few dollars upfront – learn the importance of using good paint and how to tell a premium product from an inferior one.

Why Should You Choose High-Quality Paint?

When you want to paint a room for the lowest investment possible, you might be tempted to buy inexpensive generic paint. You might regret this decision for the following reasons:

  • Cheap paint is thin. To keep costs down, low-grade paint manufacturers use fewer pigments and binders and more water. As a result, you’ll need to apply extra coats to achieve the desired look. Not only does this require more paint, but it also takes up more of your valuable time.
  • Cheap paint is more difficult to apply. The inferior quality of mediocre paint often means it separates in the can, bubbles, drips and takes longer to dry. As a result, the application process can be frustrating and messy.
  • Cheap paint doesn’t last. Lower pigment concentrations make low-end paint more susceptible to chalking and fading over time.

How to Choose Good Paint

High-quality paint goes on easily, provides even coverage and lasts for years. However, all paint looks the same while it’s still in the can, so how do you tell what you’re buying? Follow these tips:

  • Ask your friends what they use. If you love your neighbor’s living room walls, ask what brand they used to achieve the look.
  • Browse the web. Look for reviews of various paint brands to give you an idea of their reputation.
  • Call around to local paint stores. You’re likely to notice a prevailing consensus for high-end manufacturers. You’ll also receive recommendations to steer clear of cheap, no-name paint.
  • Consider the application you have in mind. Sometimes, choosing quality paint means finding the type that matches the job. For instance, interior and exterior paint are quite different, and you need specific products to paint different surfaces, such as drywall, stone, wood or concrete.
  • Look at the price. In the end, you get what you pay for. That’s why the price tag is a good indicator of quality paint. You may spend more initially on a premium product, but less paint goes further and lasts longer, saving you time and money in the long run.

The Paint Centers offers high-quality paint from Benjamin Moore, one of the most celebrated and reputable brands in the industry. Visit one of our locations in Flint or Grand Blanc, Michigan to view our wide selection and ask questions of our knowledgeable staff. We’ll help you choose good paint for the application you have in mind and provide expert advice to ensure the finished product meets your expectations. Stop by today!

May 30, 2018

Living in an older home with brick walls may present you with a dilemma. The brick is lovely on its own, but sadly, it has become an eyesore because it no longer matches your décor. You always have the option of painting brick surfaces, but should you? Consider these pros and cons of painting brick to help you decide.

Benefits of Painting Brick

You’ve heard good things about painted brick and want to enjoy that look in your home. Here are the possible positive outcomes of painting brick surfaces inside and outside your home:

  • Long-term enjoyment: As long as the bricks are in suitable condition and you prepare them properly, painted interior brick walls can become a nearly maintenance-free feature you’ll enjoy for years to come. Exterior bricks may require fresh paint every three to five years to keep them looking good.
  • Refreshed interior: A room with brick walls can appear dark and dated. Painting them a light color can brighten and modernize the space with minimal expense.
  • Revitalized fireplace: You may be considering replacing your unattractive brick fireplace, but with a coat of paint, you can transform it into a stylish focal point of the room.

Reasons Not to Paint Brick

If your bricks aren’t in pristine condition, you may want to reconsider painting them. Here’s why:

  • Bricks are porous: Serving as durable masonry with built-in color, bricks aren’t intended to be painted. This is because they are incredibly porous, meaning they soak up paint like a sponge. You can work around this with careful prep work, but this includes cleaning and drying the bricks, making repairs with acrylic caulk, applying conditioner or primer, and then using breathable latex paint.
  • Damaged bricks are even more porous: You may be inclined to hide molding, crumbling or otherwise deteriorating bricks, but these are the worst candidates for painting. It’s difficult to repair and dry out damaged bricks, leaving the porous surface susceptible to moisture absorption. If water builds up inside the bricks, paint won’t stick, and you’ll be left with a peeling, unattractive brick wall.
  • It’s difficult to remove paint from bricks: If the color starts chipping and you change your mind about wanting painted bricks, you may want to return to square one. This requires the use of chemicals, and unfortunately, it’s often impossible to remove all the color. This could leave you with a look you like less than unpainted bricks.

If you decide you want to try your hand at painting the brick surfaces in your home, let our experts help you choose the best Benjamin Moore paint for the job. For more painting tips, please visit the Paint Centers website, or stop by one of our Michigan locations to stock up on painting supplies for your next project.