Tips to Touch up Flaws in New Paint

There is nothing more annoying than to see scratches or scuff marks after your walls or ceiling has been painted. This is a common occurrence so you don’t need to get flustered because there are various methods to fix the flaws and make your wall and ceiling look brand new again.

How to touch up chips

  • For fixing chips in drywall, use a tub of drywall compound and for chips in wood, opt for wood putty.
  • Take a putty knife and scoop a portion of filler that is approximately the size of the chip.
  • Fill the chip with the broadside of the putty knife blade.
  • Leave it to dry for 24 hours and then sand it with a 120-grit sanding block. The tarnished surface will soon be even with the surrounding areas.

How to remove scuff marks

 

  • Wet a cleaning rag (no excess water should remain) and pour some abrasive cleaner on it.
  • Very carefully, rub the cleaner and rag over the scuff mark to erase it as much as you can. The cleaner should be washed off the wall, following which it should be allowed to dry.
  • Use a high-quality wall primer to paint the surface and dry as per instructions on the label. After that, re-paint the area with matching paint as the rest of the wall. You can apply two coats if needed (allow the first coat to dry and then check if a second one is required).
  • If there are too many scuff marks, it is advisable to paint the entire section of the wall.

How to get rid of scratches

  • Scratches leave grooves in the paint, which means you have to smooth over the area and repaint it.
  • A small square of fine sandpaper can be used to make the scratched area smooth. Ensure that you sand the existing paint away till the scratch is completely removed.
  • Take a soft cloth and wipe the area to eliminate any dust from the sanding.
  • A fresh coat of paint needs to be applied to replace the removed paint.
  • The area needs to be totally dry, especially if you are going to place furniture against it.

Need advice about fixing up your home? Simply call Southwest Professional Painting today, 602-490-0979.

What Colors Can Liven Up The Kitchen This Season?

Gone are the days when the kitchen used to be a dull and lifeless portion of the house. While revamping our home, we think of color combinations to spruce up the living room, bedroom, and even the bathroom, so why should the kitchen be excluded? Check out some colors that you can use to liven up the cooking station of the house.

Lively Greens

Yellow-based greens exude a warm and sunny vibe as they can ramp up the available natural light. Imagine lots of crisp white trim, apple, and olive greens – refreshing isn’t it? They evoke nature and the environment and thus have positive associations, which is the reason for their popularity. If the ceilings are high, a couple of vibrant hues can warm up stainless-steel appliances and some white-painted areas can keep them from being too bright.

Soothing Vintage Blues and Greens

The words used to describe these colors are – soft and optimistic. These shades of blue and green can accentuate the visual appeal of a kitchen in a subtle way. They add pep to a compact workspace and blend well with wood countertops and floors. The hues are casual, comfortable, with an inherent versatility. They also go well with retro furnishings.

Warm Harvest Hues

Did you know that the three colors, which can create hearth-like warmth in a cooking space, can be found in the produce aisle? That’s right – the colors are borrowed from carrots, peas, and corn. They can absorb the chill off stainless steel in kitchens, and enhance the rich tones in ceiling beams or wood floors. You can choose a single hue if your kitchen is not too big whereas the combination of colors can be used for bigger spaces.

Elegant Shades of Blue

Rich, saturated shades of blue have a classic and timeless beauty. A lot of these blues are now being used in both kitchens and living rooms. You can layer dark and midtone indigos for an understated elegance. The buzzword you are going for is sophistication. A particular look you can opt for is blues on the walls whereas cabinets are unified by a blue-and-white tile mural. The shades stand out more if there are black countertops with the chairs and tables painted navy.

Painting Ceilings – Get it Right!

Painting might be the simplest DIY method to give your home an upgrade, but the ceiling is a whole other story. It is daunting and takes time as it involves a bit of elevation and contortion.

  • Remove as much furniture from the room as you can before you start so that it is easier for you to make your way around the space where you work. The ones that can’t be removed should be covered with drop cloths, as it will protect them and the floors from mishaps and paint splatters.
  • Painter’s tape should be used where the walls meet the ceiling and around any moldings that decorate the ceiling’s edges.
  • A coat of primer is necessary because it acts like a stain barrier. Moreover, the primer ensures that in most cases, you need to use only one coat of paint to finish.
  • With the help of a stepladder, paint a 2-3″ cut-line along the edge of the ceiling. Begin at a corner, and use a 2” trim brush to paint around 3 feet along one wall, then the adjacent one. Use the roller and start painting the ceiling while the cut-line is still wet. The same rule applies for paint applied from section to section with the roller.
  • Fill the deep portion of a roller tray with paint, and roll the apparatus over the paint till the nap is covered. This is the correct way to use a roller. Don’t submerge it; slide it gently over the paint in a back and forth motion in the shallow part of the tray until the nap is completely covered and paint drips are minimal.
  • Take the extension pole and attach it to the roller. Use the paint-filled roller and go for a zigzag pattern measuring 3-4″ square. To even out the paint, work over the same area using straight, controlled strokes. Don’t leave paint lines from the edge of the roller. Keep in mind that you have to work while the paint is still wet, so tackle small sections. To reduce distinct, visible lines between sections, ensure that you feather the edges.

You might need to repeat the process from cut-lines to painting after the coat is dry. That depends on the paint and coverage though. Southwest Professional Painting is proud to have qualified experts on board who can help you with your painting projects. Call today, 602-490-0979

Why Hire a Licensed Contractor?

It is important to make sure that who ever you hire to do work on your home is not only Licensed, Bonded and Insured, but also Licensed with the ROC (Arizona Register of Contractors).  There are so many scams and people working without the proper licenses, to do the work contracted.  This can result in damage to your home, a job done badly, or worse.  Some scammers will have you pay up front for materials and never show up, or show up do a lousy job and expect payment at completion, and you may not notice until after they are gone.  If they are not registered or licensed with the ROC, you may not have a leg to stand on in recovery your money or getting the repairs needed to have the job done right.

Cheap labor sounds great but in the end it could cost you much more than if you hired a contractor with all the correct licensing and insurance in place.   To know if someone is registered and licensed, first they should have an ROC # on their paperwork, fliers, website and business cards.  But even those can be fake, so double check with the ROC before you hire to make sure that the company you want to do the job is truly licensed and registered.

Don’t be the victim of a scammer.  Find out more about the ROC and how they can help protect you as the consumer.

Some Great Articles for Reading:
Why hire a licensed contractor?   http://www.azroc.gov/Invest/why_hire_licensed.html
How to Avoid Becoming a Victim.   http://www.azroc.gov/Invest/protect_yourself.html
“10 Tips for Hiring a Contractor” by Popular Mechanics: 

Tips for Distressing and Antiquing Furniture

Want to get antique furniture without spending too much? There is a great DIY solution available for that – you can distress and antique your own furniture and you get to save as well. Just follow the instructions below:

  • Ensure the furniture is clean before you begin. Apply some liquid sander/deglosser on it with a dry rag (no need to do so if you are staining the top).
  • After covering the surfaces, use the spray primer on the furniture. To avoid over-spraying on the drawers, use a piece of cardboard under the edges of the drawer fronts.
  • Use the spray paint on the surfaces. Ensure that you read the manufacturer’s instructions thoroughly, especially regarding recoating and dry times. This is important so that the paint finish doesn’t crackle, peel, or wrinkle.
  • An electric sander can be used to strip the top as it is going to be stained. For removing the factory finish and getting down to bare wood, use 80-grit sandpaper and then 150-grit sandpaper to smooth the surface. Any areas that can’t be reached with the electric sander can be worked on using a standard one.
  • The objective of distressing the paint is to get a natural look. With the sandpaper, remove paint in areas where natural wear would occur like raised areas, corners, areas around handles and/or knobs.
  • Apply the stain evenly on the top with a rag. A second coat can be applied if necessary. Using a paint brush and stain, apply stain to the entire drawer face.
  • Wipe off the stain of the drawer front with a rag, while taking care not to remove too much. The key is to leave it settled in cracks and crevices, while raised areas and flat areas will be left with only a very slight tint of stain.
  • Repeat the process of staining and wiping till the entire piece of furniture is antiqued.
  • To give the drawer pulls a fresh look, start with a coat of primer, followed by a coat of spray paint, and ending with one or two coats of clear sealer.
  • Lastly, apply a minimum of two coats of polyurethane on the top using a foam brush. Be careful with the recoating and dry times as mentioned in the manufacturer’s instructions.

How to Repair Peeling Paint

Peeling paint is a common problem in most households these days. Needless to say, it can completely spoil the look of your home by being an eyesore in an otherwise attractive area. Moreover, it is unsafe because it acts as a breeding ground for bacteria and mildew. Repairing peeling paint might take time but it is necessary.

Tips to fix peeling paint:

  • There is no harm in being prepared and protecting yourself. Regardless of the fact if the peeling paint is lead-based, you need to don a safety mask, glasses, and gloves. Whether the size of the area to fix is large or small, always put a large piece of plastic or tarp near the area to catch stray pieces of paint. Don’t forget to tape off nearby trim areas and also remove any furniture, rugs, or other furnishings from the space.
  • Work on the affected area by removing all paint from it. You can easily do so with a wire brush or paint scraper. Scrape off all the loose paint carefully.
  • After the peeling paint is removed, there might be cracks or holes left behind. All necessary repairs should be done before repainting. Use a putty knife to apply a patching compound; smooth and let dry as per the directions of the manufacturer.
  • Even if the patching isn’t necessary, you still need to sand the space so that the area doesn’t have any grooves or lines. A very fine-grit sandpaper should serve the purpose.
  • The area to be repainted should be clean. Use a slightly damp sponge or tack cloth, wipe off the area that needs to be painted, and then wipe it again with a clean, dry rag. Let the area dry completely before you begin to paint.
  • Moisture on the walls is often the common cause for peeling paint. If it is so in your case, you need to prevent the newly painted area from the same problem – prime the walls. Cover the surface with primer and allow it to dry as per the manufacturer’s directions.
  • After all steps are complete, you can start painting the wall. Apply the first coat evenly over the prepared area. Let it dry, apply a second coat if needed, and then let it dry again.

For more tips on how to repair peeling paint, call or email us at Southwest Professional Painting. We would be happy to assist you! 602-490-0979

Tips to Store Paint Properly

Have paint you need to store, and not sure where or how you should store it?  There are a few paint storing techniques you need to know because you can’t just lock up cans of paint in any room and leave it till it is required again.

  • Storage areas, such as a well-insulated utility closet or garage, are a good choice as they are dry and protected from extreme temperatures.
  • If you store paints cans for a long time, they tend to rust or corrode, both on the inside and outside (especially latex- and acrylic-based paints). Place a bunch of newspapers under the cans as it protects them from moisture in case they are standing on absorbent finished surfaces. Dry, porous surfaces like unfinished wood shelves will prevent corrosion on the outside.
  • It is advisable not to store cans on cement surfaces.
  • The lid of the can should be sealed tight so that the paint is well-preserved. This is done to prevent oxidation (if in contact with air) and reduce evaporation. Keeping it free from air is vital because sometimes the even air inside the can causes the surface to form a layer of skin.
  • Buy clear plastic food wrap from a grocery store. This is used for packing leftovers and sealing lidless food containers and bowls. Cut off three squares of the material, so that it is enough to overlap the top of the can by 2 inches.
  •  Push down a sheet of plastic wrap along the insides of the can and stop when it touches the surface of the paint. Press along the edges of the can so that it forms a complete seal over the entire surface.
  • Over the rim of the paint can, place the remaining two squares of plastic wrap. This acts like an additional seal and moisture barrier, making it easier to remove and replace the lid.
  • Use a short section of two-by-four lumber in order to reduce distortion of the rim and lid when the can is closed. The tool distributes the force of a hammer equally across the lid. Don’t use excessive pressure while tamping it down with the hammer. Rotate the lumber often to slowly shut the lid without bending it or causing dents in it or the rim.

Have questions or need advice, call Southwest Professional Painting, 602-490-0979

Latex or Oil-based Paint?

Your home needs a makeover every now and then and painting is a crucial part of that. You can choose a mix of both vibrant and subtle hues to give your home a completely new look. But before that, you need to decide which type of paint is suitable for your requirements – latex or oil-based paint.

Latex Paint

It is also known as water-based paint. Check out its benefits:

  • Easy to apply and extremely durable.
  • It can be used anywhere in your home (both inside and outside).
  • The dry time is quite fast and it is resistant to fading and cracks too.
  • If it leaves behind streaks or brush marks during application, there is nothing to worry because it blends together when dry.
  • Spilled or scattered paint can be wiped clean with water.
  • Latex paint is the perfect choice if you or a family member has allergies, asthma, or other respiratory illnesses, since it is virtually odor-free.

It is advisable not to use this type of paint on wood as it swells the grain of wood, thus making sanding between coats essential.

Oil-based Paint

For areas with high traffic, those exposed to grease splatter, exterior areas or covering trim work, oil-based paint is the ideal choice as it gives an attractive glossy finish. Your walls should be in good condition before painting oil-based paint highlights any flaws or imperfections.

  • Resistant to stains and fading even in the presence of direct sunlight.
  • Durability is much more than latex paint, which is why it is used a lot in kitchens where food or grease splatters can be wiped away without difficulty.
  • Maintenance is easy as it is heavy duty paint and doesn’t come off when it is scrubbed on.

The problem with oil-based paint is that, it is tougher to apply than a latex one, with a longer dry time. It can take anywhere from 24-48 house in order to dry completely. Cleaning with water is not an option in case there are paint splatters. Though it has high resistance, this ability diminishes as the years go by, which is why oil-painted walls often tend to fade and yellow over time.

At Southwest Professional Painting, we can help you pick out products that will benefit your home for years. Let our representative talk to you and provide a quote – we guarantee you will not be disappointed!

 

Safety Tips for Painting Exteriors

It is fun and exciting to paint the exterior of your home, but if you are not careful, you can injure yourself while doing the job. If there are family members/friends helping you out, it is your responsibility to ensure their safety too.

  • The ladder needs to be placed in such a way that for every 3 feet up, your ladder should be placed 1 foot away from the house (3:1). This ratio makes your position more stable. The ground underneath should be firm without rocks or loose objects around it. Don’t use plastic drop cloths under any circumstances for putting underneath the ladder as it will enable it to move and kick out from under you.
  • Have your hand and both feet on the ladder at all times without straddling between the house and the ladder. The latter position might prove fatal as the ladder might become unstable causing you to fall backwards.
  • If there are power lines next to where you are painting, use a fiberglass ladder since they don’t conduct electricity. Even if you accidentally touch a power line while on the ladder, you won’t receive an electric shock.
  • It is advisable to have someone stay beside you in case you have to place the ladder in an unsafe place. They can give you a heads-up if they notice anything wrong.
  • You need to be extra cautious while painting the roof. If you lose your footing, then the fall might cause grave injuries. Invest in a fall arrest system which will slow you down if you fall. Avoid painting the roof just after it has rained.
  • Needless to say, heavy objects like ladders falling on your feet will result in broken bones. For your protection, wear steel-toed boots, which will keep your toes safe if something accidentally falls on them. They provide a good rubber traction, which comes in handy while painting the roof.
  • Don’t paint when there is lightning. If it starts raining while you are on the job, pack up everything right away. Fiberglass ladders will not protect you because electricity can arch from your house to you. Also, aluminum ladders conduct electricity and if it is struck by lightning you will receive a nasty shock.

At Southwest Professional Painting our experts can talk to you about safety measures while painting the exterior of your home. Give us a call 602-490-0979!

 

Top 5 Painting Blunders and their Solutions

Painting is not an easy job for sure – it takes time and effort to get it just right. Minor slip-ups are acceptable, but there are certain factors to be taken into consideration before you begin so that you don’t commit blunders that mess up your whole house.

Selecting low grade applicators

Always remember that you require proper tools to get the painting done properly. Lots of people spend a lot on paint but tighten their wallets when it comes to applicators. It is too late when you see lumps of roller lint under the paint or the layers of paint being uneven. Please buy good quality brushes or rollers.

Picking out over-bright hues

If you look at a dark color on the swatch, remember that the light of the room tends to brighten it. That is why a certain shade might look brighter when applied to a surface. Colors that are less saturated with gray mixed in, tends to resemble the hue that you were going for. In order to avoid this the color selected should be a couple of hues darker than the one you want.

Don’t forget the finish

The final look and feel of the room depends a lot on the paint’s finish. Since they affect the overall look, you need to be careful while buying the paint. There are numerous types to choose from like flat, matte or high gloss, so ask the pros what kind of finish the paint has.

Overdoing accent walls

For the last few years, accent walls were the “in thing”. This trend is now waning slightly, but if you still want them in your home, you need to go for a tone that is just two or three shades different from the other walls. It is advisable to opt for a semi gloss finish because that increases contrast.

Avoid white washing all walls and ceilings

It is always best to go for neutral shades such as beige, gray, or cream instead of painting everything stark white. The shade might be your favorite but it tends to make the entire room appear smaller than it actually is. Also when the walls and trim are white, the room emits a cold and formal vibe. White trim with a contrasting color helps to outline your walls and define the space.

Want help in revamping your home? Please give Southwest Professional Painting a call so that we can discuss your requirements and provide a quote ASAP.