Tips and Tricks for Painting an Interior Wall

11 May 2017

Painting an interior wall is often seen as a daunting and endless task. There are a few simple tips and tricks that will make it easier and quicker.

First, gather your materials. You'll need a narrow (1") brush and a wide (2" - 3") one.



Buy the best brushes you can afford. A cheap brush will begin to shed bristles immediately, and you'll have to remove every one for a good-looking wall. Also, the bristles will splay outwards, making it difficult to see exactly where the paint is going. If you wash them carefully and dry them flat, a good brush will last for years.

For rollers, however, it is best to buy the least expensive roller covers, with a medium nap, that you can. No matter how expensive, covers are almost impossible to get completely clean or totally dry. Cheap roller covers perform well and you can just throw them away unwashed.


Wrap your roller cover (still on the frame) and brushes in aluminum foil when you stop painting. They'll still be usable the next day.


Maybe your most vital tool will be blue painters' masking tape. It's not expensive, so you can use it everywhere you need it: at the top of the wall, over outlets and switches (remove the covers first) and around windows and doors. You can also use it to attach a dropcloth at the bottom of the wall, where it protects both the wall and the floor.


When you've removed the switch and outlet covers, use blue tape to secure the screw(s) to the inside of the cover. This means you can always find them when you're ready to replace the covers.

As you see, the preparation is the largest part of the job, but now you're ready to paint!


Many painters will paint a large "W" on the wall with a roller, and then spread it out. Work from the top of the wall to the bottom, so you can correct any mistakes (especially paint drips) as you go. It's better to apply too little paint than too much. You can always add more, but too much leads to drips and spots that are dry on top but wet underneath.


If the paint you've applied looks shiny, you've put on too much. Go back and spread it out. If you're using a roller, excess paint will drip off as you raise the roller. You can remove the excess by rolling it off on the shallow end of the pan.


A plastic pail edge protector/pour spout protects the groove that the cover fits into from getting filled with paint. If this groove becomes clogged, it's impossible to re-seal the paint can and the paint will dry out.


Painting, even though it does take time and can have difficult parts, is easier and quicker if you just use the right Tips and Tricks.