Monday, August 08, 2011

Paint and Primer


Painting is a job that requires preparation and the right equipment. Oftentimes homeowners are unsure about whether they need to use primer before painting or if just paint will do the trick. Although there are no firm rules, there are certain cases where one or the other will be adequate.

Consider a room where the walls have been heavily stained, either by moisture infiltration, rust or another factor. Deep-set stains may bleed through regular paint, therefore a primer should be applied to help block and lock-in the stain. When a room had previously been painted in a very dark color, like red or purple, a primer can help cover the color quickly without the need for multiple applications of regular paint. There also are specialized primers that can be used in rooms such as kitchens and bathrooms that often contain a lot of moisture. These primers inhibit the growth of mold and mildew on painted surfaces. Primers also may be used on materials, such as metal or plastic, to help the colored paint stick to the surface of the item. If a room is only to be painted white or tinted slightly with color, then a primer alone can be used. Certain primers seal porous wall surfaces so they do not absorb paint, requiring more coats for coverage.

Rooms that are being painted that are already white and free of stains or other surface abnormalities may be painted sufficiently with just a coat of regular paint. If skipping primer, look for a high-quality, thick paint that boasts good coverage in one or two coats.

There are new products today that offer primer and paint all in one combination. The jury is still out on the efficacy of these new items, but homeowners can experiment with these paints to see if they work for them. Keep in mind that the cost of a combination product may be more than traditional paint and primer.


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