Here is a list of 12 more useful pieces of advice concerning everything from How to handle lead-based paint to when it’s safe to apply a second coat!
- Consider these questions when matching colors to the character of your home: What elements do you like best about your home? Architectural features? Windows? Porches? What do you like least? Style? Size? Proportions? Answers to these questions will help you decide which elements to highlight, which areas to dress up with materials such as stone or shingles, and which areas to downplay with a darker hue.
- In 1978, the government banned lead as a paint ingredient because of its health risks, but most homes built before 1978—about 57 million of them—still have lead paint somewhere in them. There’s little risk from paint in fine condition, but peeling and flaking lead paint is hazardous, especially to young children and pregnant women. Home test kits for lead paint are available, but the government recommends hiring professionals for accurate testing and safe paint removal. Call the National Lead Information Center at 800/424-5323 with questions and 800/532-3394 to request printed materials.
- Think of exterior color schemes in terms of threes: one color for the main body, one for the trim, and a third color for punch to accentuate doors and shutters.
- Paint can help cut energy costs. When applied under your roof deck, low-emissivity (low-E) paint can cut heat transfer by 5-8 percent, producing annual energy savings up to 15 percent.
- Chalkboard paint transforms walls, floors, and tabletops into the perfect place to give kids’ creative impulses free rein. The latex formula of chalkboard paint requires no special primers or sealers.
- Magnetic primer is an easy way to make walls interactive in kid-friendly spaces. Just apply the magnetic primer, wait until it’s dry, and then add a top coat in the paint color of your choice.
- Before going in the garbage, cans of latex paint must be dried out. (Leave lids off to show garbage collectors that the paint is hardened.) Or, you can mix leftover latex paint with cat litter or shredded paper, let it dry, and then toss it in the trash. Ask your local solid-waste office about disposal programs for oil-base products, and whether there is a designated hazardous-waste collection day. Consider donating leftover paint to a local nonprofit organization or shelter.
- Metallics, pearlescents, translucents, and interference colors—shades that shift with varying light—are today’s hip hues. These luminous pigments bring movement and emotion to lifeless surfaces.
- Using the right paint sheen is important.
- Exteriors: Flats and satins are best for most siding surfaces. Semigloss and gloss paints work well for doors, windows, shutters, fences, and outdoor furniture. Porches, floors, and decks require special paint.
- Interiors: Flats hide surface flaws but can be tough to clean, making them best in low-traffic areas. Satins are more luminous, easier to clean, and best suited for hall walls, baths, and some trims. Semigloss paints are easy to clean and a good choice for woodwork and walls subject to wear and tear. Gloss paints highlight surface flaws, but they do well on kitchen and bathroom walls, banisters, railings, cabinetry, windowsills, and some trim.
- If you have a unique color request, most paint centers can mix a custom hue to complement your favorite fabric swatch or artwork, often at no additional charge.
- Waterproofing paint turns concrete walls into water barriers. Available in oil, latex, or powder, waterproofing paint, such as UGL’s Drylok, penetrates masonry pores and expands as it dries to become part of the wall. One gallon of Drylok covers about 75 square feet of surface area, and you’ll need two coats: one by brush and another by roller. Drylok comes in white, gray, beige, blue, and some pastel tints; it can also be painted over with the latex hue of your choice.
- Oil and latex exterior paints require different drying times. Use the following guidelines to ensure a quality paint job:
Dry to touch: 2—3 hours
Safe for second coat: 4—5 hours
Dry to touch: 4 hours
Safe for second coat: 24 hours
12 More Things to Know About Painting