Return to How To's & Project Ideas

How to Paint an Interior Wall

Print this article Share

Paint has a transformative effect on a room and is one of the cheapest and easiest ways to revamp your home. Most of us have painted a wall before, but using this expert step-by-step painting guide will help you achieve more professional results.

Step 1

Prepare Area

Prepare Area

Take down any pictures or mirrors from the walls and remove any furniture, lamp shades, curtains, etc. from the room. Put a protective covering such as a plastic dustsheet or tarpaulin on the floor and over any furniture that can’t be removed from the room. Open some windows to ventilate the room. Gather everything all the equipment you need so that you are ready to start.

Step 2

Prepare Walls

Prepare Walls

This is the most important step as it will save you time and hassle in the long run. It is also essential if you want to achieve that professional, smooth finish. Carefully inspect the walls for any holes, cracks or other imperfections. Using a filling knife or paint scraper, fill the imperfections with a suitable filler. When the filler is dry, use fine sandpaper to sand the wall smooth. Wipe the walls down with a damp cloth or sponge and allow it to dry completely.

Step 3

Apply Masking Tape

Apply Masking Tape

Protect any door frames, sockets, skirting, light switches, etc. with making tape. Apply the tape in short sections and press down firmly. Use your nails or a filling knife to ensure proper bonding between the tape and the surface, to avoid any paint seeping in. Tip: If you are painting fresh, unpainted walls or walls that have been filled and sanded in places, it is recommended that you apply a coat of suitable primer and allow it to dry before you begin painting.

Step 4

Cut In

Cut In

You may want to wear protective work gloves to protect your hands from paint. Using an angled cutting in brush, outline the room with a 3-4 inch border of paint. Outline all corners, sockets, windows and door frames. Prevent drips by not overloading the paint brush with paint. This border will allow you to use the roller more easily to cover large areas. Tip: cut in one wall at a time so the border isn't completely dry when you start using the roller. This will help the paint to blend seamlessly.

Step 5

Roll Paint

Roll Paint

Pour paint into the roller tray and apply paint the roller. Working in a series of V or W shapes, apply the paint in 1 metre by 1 metre sections. Work the roller up and down and always overlap the previous section of paint to avoid streaking. Start at the top and work one area at a time, as shown in the photo.

Step 6

Second Coat

Second Coat

Allow the first coat of paint to dry thoroughly and sand any bumps or imperfections with fine grade sandpaper. Wipe the walls with a damp cloth or sponge and then allow to dry. Apply the final coat of paint, following steps 4 and 5.

Step 7

Remove Tape

Remove Tape

Just before the paint has fully dried, remove the masking tape, starting from the same point where you started applying the tape. Close all paint cans securely, and thoroughly wash brushes, rollers and trays.