Paint Quality Institute

Prep, Prime and Paint
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Walls, High Traffic/Previously Painted/To Be Painted

  1. Surface Preparation:
    *NOTE: If lead is suspected in the paint, do not attempt to remove paint or scrape, sand, use heat gun, etc., which might put lead into the environment, but rather contact a contractor qualified for lead paint assessment and abatement
    • treat any mildew with a 3:1 water:household bleach mixture, leaving it on for 20 minutes and adding more as it dries; wear eye and skin protection; rinse thoroughly
    • repair gouges, etc. with drywall compound or spackle, and sand flush once dry; for maximum durability, use plaster of Paris or patching plaster, and sand flush
    • fill gaps with quality acrylic or siliconized acrylic caulk, and immediately smooth it flush; allow to dry over night and make a second application if needed; do not sand a caulk
    • dull any glossy areas by sanding with fine grit (#220) garnet paper; wear eye protection and dust mask
    • remove all dirt by scrubbing with detergent and warm water, rinse thoroughly; pay special attention to kitchen areas (accumulated airborne cooking oils) and around switches and door knobs (hand prints and oils)
  1. Priming:
    • priming is helpful but not necessary if existing paint is in excellent condition, unless specified by paint manufacturer; but do prime all repaired areas
    • for maximum adhesion, stain blocking and uniformity of sheen, prime the entire area to be painteduse stain blocking primer if there is staining; otherwise use PVA latex wall primer
    • use stain blocking primer if there is staining; otherwise use PVA latex wall primer
  1. Painting:
    • for best dirt resistance, durability and cleanability, use a top-of-the-line interior latex wall paint in flat or eggshell finish, depending on appearance desired
    • a satin finish will provide better dirt and stain resistance
    • a flat latex wall paint will hide irregularities in the surface but will not resist stains and burnishing as well as a quality eggshell or satin finish

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