Paint Tools Matter

You’re ready to paint. You selected a color, bought the paint and prepped the room. Now it’s time to get busy, right? Maybe. Before you crack open that paint can, make sure you have the right tools. A brush is not a brush. A roller is not a roller. In order to get the job done right, you need the best tools for the job.

Paintbrushes come in a variety of sizes to suit a variety of purposes. Wide brushes work best for large, flat surfaces. Narrow brushes work best in small, tight spaces. Generally, the larger the brush, the less control and precision you will have.

Along with size, you need to pay attention to the brush’s bristles. Synthetic bristles work best for latex paint. Natural bristles work best for oil paint. Higher quality brushes have flagged bristles. The bristles are split to hold more paint and spread it more evenly. Some brushes have tapered bristles, which are good for getting into corners and grooves.

In addition to brushes, you will probably need a roller or two. U-shaped roller frames are very sturdy and easy to use. Just insert the cover, and you are ready to roll. Lamb’s wool covers work best for oil paint. Synthetic roller covers work best for latex paint. Foam covers work for oil or high-gloss latex paint.

Quality, of course, matters. The best roller covers retain their shape when squeezed, have no obvious seams and have very few loose fibers. Nap is important as well. The smoother the surface you plan to paint, the shorter the nap should be. A nap of 1/8″ to 1/4″ works well on wallboard and smooth plaster, wood and metal. A nap of 3/8″ to 1/2″ works well on lightly textured stucco, concrete and rough wood. A nap of 3/4″ to 1″ works well on heavily textured stucco, concrete block and brick.

Depending upon where you are painting, you may even need a paint pad. Paint pads work great in hard-to-reach places like behind a toilet or radiator. Most are made of plastic foam and suit both latex and oil paint.

Take the time to choose the right tools for the job. It could make all the difference in the results, and it could save you valuable time. Speak to a professional and make sure you have everything you need to get the job done right.

By Tresa Erickson

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