Paint Prep 101

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Let's talk paint prep for a minute. We had to do a serious amount of it for our laundry room make-over we are working on. In fact, my skeptical side was think we were going to have pull down a lot of the wood work and put up new. The prep work took some time, but it totally worked. The walls look good as new and we did not end up with costly repairs trying to tear anything out. Here are a few basic steps we used to clean up the woodwork:

Action shot, cute, I know.
The before picture. YUCKY! Scratched, dirty, peeling. Not good!

The clean up team: Paint prep spray, primer, sandpaper.
The steps:
1. spray the area to be painted down in the paint prep spray and wipe it off. Make sure it is really dry before moving on to the next step. I really like the stuff I used, but you could also go with a degreaser. It cleans the wall really well and takes the shine off to prepare the surface for new paint. When is the last time you wiped down the wall behind your washer and dryer. YUCKY is all I have to say! The cleaner claims to be low VOC, but I found it to be pretty smelly. Not a project for when kids are nearby.

2. Sanding - Not fun, but necessary. I used 150 gritt, but a little more course might have meant less elbow grease. Sand the bad areas really well and give everything a light sanding. Change the sandpaper as needed. You will use several pieces.

3. Primer - we prefer Kilz, but I have also heard great things about Zinser. I don't know if they make an odorless though, so I stuck with my go to. Roll on one coat. Use a foam roller for non texture areas. Cut in border areas with a angled paint brush.

4. Now finally....the wall is ready for paint!

The results are pretty dramatic to me. I really did not think it would clean up so well!

The new happy woodwork! (Please ignore the dirty floors.) Clean up is another show...

So, do you have some banged up woodwork in your house somewhere? If so, get after it, you will be so glad you did!

We are making great progress on the laundry room. The walls are painted and the doors are blue. I really LOVE them. More to come soon!


  1. So cleeeean. Blue doors! Can't wait to see those.

  2. Thanks for that tutorial! I cannot afford to ask for the painters in Perth just to retouch some paint on the corners of my room. I'll follow all the guidelines you provided.


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