How to prepare before you paint interior

1 – DROP THE ENTIRE ROOM.
After the furniture is covered or removed, cover the floor with heavy-duty canvas drop cloths. Use 9-ft. by 12-ft. drop cloths near walls, 4-ft. by 5-ft. cloths under tools and paint, and a 12-ft. by 15-ft. cloth to cover a large area of flooring or furniture. Don’t skimp on the drop cloths. Cheap products can allow paint to seep through, and plastic drop cloths can be slippery, espe¬cially on hardwood floors.

cover the floor with heavy-duty canvas drop cloths while preparing for painting the interior

cover the floor with heavy-duty canvas drop cloths while preparing for painting the interior

 

2 – ORGANIZE AND STAGE ESSENTIAL TOOLS.
Keep all commonly used tools close at hand. This helps the work to go smoothly. Place these tools on their own drop cloth in an easily accessible but out-of-the- way area. Large items, such as stepladders and vacu¬ums, also should be kept close by.

organize and stage essential tools - keep all commonly used tools close at hand

organize and stage essential tools – keep all commonly used tools close at hand

 

3 – LIGHT THE SPACE.
Set up halogen lamps on a stand, and clamp circular incandes¬cent lamps wherever possible. Set the lights in a position that elim¬inates shadows and works best with the natural light coming into the room. Adjust the lights as conditions change.

light the space while preparing for painting the interior

light the space while preparing for painting the interior

 

4 – REMOVE WALL AND CEILING OBSTRUCTIONS.
Don’t try to paint around easily removable elements such as window treatments, sconces, outlet covers, switch covers, thermostats, and recessed-light trim rings. Large fixtures, such as chandeliers, can be covered with plastic instead of being removed. The escutcheons can be unscrewed and lowered.


remove wall and ceiling obstructions - do not try to paint around easily removable elements

remove wall and ceiling obstructions – do not try to paint around easily removable elements

 

5 – WASH DOWN EVERYTHING.
Wash down everything – One-quarter cup of trisodium phosphate (TSP) per 2 gallons of water will remove dirt, smudges, smoke residue, and most surface grime. Pay particular attention to high- touch areas such as doorjambs and areas around light switches. Bleach and TSP work best on mildew stains. Use a light hand when washing; you don’t want to soak the wall. Also, wear heavy-duty rubber gloves. Allow the walls and ceiling to dry completely before moving on.

wash down everything - remove dirt, smudges, smoke residue, and most surface grime

wash down everything – remove dirt, smudges, smoke residue, and most surface grime