The Importance of Prepping Before Painting

Painting can be a real labour of love. Like an iceberg, it’s only the top layer that we can see, but really it’s what’s going on underneath the surface that counts. So, don’t rush straight into painting, no matter how appealing the prospect of crisp white walls are! Skipping the prep work could mean having to redecorate in no time at all, so it really is worth the extra effort of doing the job right the first time.

Surfaces must be cleaned first. Failing to clean the surface beforehand means that contaminants will be left on the area that is going to be painted, meaning that paint will cling to the dirt and not to the surface it’s supposed to be covering. Inevitably this leads to peeling and flaking over time, so it’s well worth the effort of giving the surface a thorough scrub first. After all, the fine finishes you have probably seen while browsing through some of the shotblast media available online were only achieved thanks to thorough prior cleaning.

Surfaces must be left to dry. This might sound like an obvious point to make, but an area wont be properly prepared if isn’t dry. No professional painter would apply paint directly onto a damp surface as doing so would dilute the formula and make it harder to work with.

Filling might be a necessary step. After all, what’s the point in applying paint perfectly if the surface is littered with holes?! Holes and hairline cracks can easily be repaired using filler, but bear in mind that filler shrinks as it dries – a lot needs to be applied, leaving it protruding beyond the surface so that it can be sanded flat once it’s dried.

It might be necessary to sand the entire surface before painting can begin. This is a necessary step in the preparation process for surfaces such as wood as it smoothens out the area to create an even level, and will reduce the appearance of transition from any bare surfaces to areas of existing paint. Sanding will create more dust, so the surface will need to be wiped down with a cloth or blown off.

Consider using a primer. Primer is more like glue than paint, and is handy for turning any surface into one that’s smooth and uniform. There are a huge number of primers on offer and are designed for different purposes, such as those formulated to prevent damp stains from seeping through to newly painted walls, or to stop ‘thirsty’ surfaces like bare wood from guzzling up expensive paint.

High quality paints are available from suppliers such as, but it would be a shame to waste it by skimping on the preparatory steps. Without a doubt, the amount of preparation that is done before painting begins will determine the longevity of the paint job, meaning that professional grade paint will turn out to be great value for money, and the finished result will look excellent.

Beware of painters who claim that a property doesn’t require any prep work at all. Choose the right painter who prove reliable, easy to work with and is as passionate about the final result as you are, like Mt Hood Pro Painting in Portland.

By investing in the right products and committing to doing the legwork before the first tin of paint is cracked open… you wont regret it!

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