Pro Tips for Painting Interior Walls

Getting as much information as possible is vital to ensure quick and impressive results when you start an interior painting project! As professional interior painters, we will give you some essential tips and explain how to paint a wall for your home’s interior!

These tips are professional tips used by our painters to reduce painting time without compromising the finish coat of the walls. 


Understanding The Process of Painting a Wall

Knowing what you are getting into right from the beginning is critical. When you understand what is involved in painting interior walls, you can assess if you want to tackle this independently.

But even if you have painting experience and feel confident with the process, it is still essential to access what is needed, and you will find our critical tips to make painting your interior wall easier to manage. 

Steps to Preparing Interior Walls

Here are the steps to preparing the room before painting. These steps are in order, so adhere to the sequence. 

Step 1: Remove all furniture from the room when possible. 

Step 2: Leave at least 2 -3 ft of working space from the perimeter of the walls.

Step 3: Cover the entire floor with plastic or painter drop cloths. (Use non-slip drops for hardwoods.)

Step 4: Remove all light plates, curtains, and pictures. (Place all screws into a gallon bucket.)

Step 5: Thoroughly wipe the edge of all baseboards with a damp rag. (Remove all dust.)

Step 6: Tape all baseboard edges where the wall and baseboard meet. (The tape line must be straight and heavily rubbed for proper adhesion.)

Step 7: Cover all sockets and light switches with tape.

Wall Painting Preparations

Painting preparations are the most critical part of the process. So, make sure that you do not skip or shortcut these steps. You want to ensure you have thoroughly prepared all walls, providing a fresh and uniform finish.

Step 1: Dust the walls for cobwebs. 

Step 2: Sand the entire wall space with a pole or power sander.

Step 3: Prime all walls with a quality primer if the drywall is new or you are covering a dark color. 

Step 4: To inspect the walls, use a high-lumen light and shine it, pointing at a 45-degree angle.

Step 5: Use a lightweight drywall compound to repair all nail pops and drywall damages. (You will need to retape drywall seams if they have separated.) 

Step 6: Sand all drywall patches and prime them with flat interior paint or interior drywall primer. 

Steps How to Paint the Walls

So, this is where our experience and insight come in handy. Even if you are an interior painter or have professional experience, you should find these tips and techniques helpful, and the order of each step may surprise you!

Step 1: Roll the walls tight to the trim and ceiling interphases. (Rolling the walls close to trim work will reduce brushwork.)

Tip: Rolling interior walls first works best with flat or premium interior paints.

Step 2: Start brushing the bottom of the walls clean to the tape on the baseboards. 

Step 3: It’s time to start cutting in any window or door casings. (Remember to follow the caulk line. You can always use painter’s tape here if you are not experienced.)

Step 4: Finally, it’s time to cut in the ceilings.

Tip: Cutting the tops of interior walls requires a steady hand and painting experience. If you are not an experienced painter, we have some tips to help.

Wall Painting Tips For Cutting-in

When it’s time to cut in the interior walls (where the ceilings meet the wall), it’s imperative to take your time and get this right. You don’t want to repaint or touch ceilings because you have wall paint on them. 

Tip 1: We recommend using a 2-inch stiff bristle paintbrush. A stiff paintbrush will better manipulate the paint, resulting in much straighter edge work. 

The best paint brush for interior walls is a Purdy Pro Extra sprig. Purdy brushes are the most common paintbrush among professional house painters.

Tip 2: Pour one inch of paint into an empty one-gallon paint bucket. Painters also refer to this kind of bucket as a “cut bucket.”

Tip 3: Add a capful of Floetrol paint additive to your cut bucket to make the paint easier to brush. It’s hard to edge straight with thick interior house paint, no matter how excellent your skills are. 

Today’s low VOC paints dry fast and need an additive to help increase the open time, allowing it to level, flow, and brush easily. 

Tip 4: Your eyes must be close to where you are painting. We recommend using a 6 ft step ladder for 9 ft walls or lower. 

Don’t use a ladder that is more than 3 feet shorter than whatever wall height you are painting.

Tip 5: Placing your ladder in the correct position will allow you to see the consistency and accuracy of the line you are painting while putting your body in a natural and comfortable position.  

  • If you are painting where the wall and ceiling meet, place your ladder parallel to the wall. Put the front feet of the ladder, almost touching the baseboard. 
  • Kick the rear feet of the ladder (where you will stand) away from the wall, approximately 3 – 6 inches. 
  • Paint the wall going counter-clockwise if you are right-handed and clockwise for lefties. 

Tip 6: The most challenging part of painting the tops of the walls is seeing and understanding where the ceiling and wall meet and how far to paint into the ceiling. 

  • A painter’s trick is to take a five-in-one painter’s tool and lightly score the apex of where the ceiling meets the wall. It will leave a gray mark from its aluminum composition. That line is now acting as your paint guide!
  • Paint approximately 1/16 of an inch onto the ceiling. Keep that measurement consistent for a straight and consistent line. When you step away, you will have straight lines that appear professional!

How to Gain Experience Using a Paintbrush? 

This article is written assuming that you have basic painting skills. But if you are a first-time painter, you can gain familiarity using a paintbrush. The easiest way to become familiar with paintbrushes is to brush large areas that do not require edging.

Grab a large exterior project or cardboard before jumping on more detailed work. You can also hire us if you live in Raleigh, NC! Our interior painters recommend the best interior paints and take the hassle out of the process! 

View more articles like this for more information on specific steps, paint products, and more!

Similar Posts