Over the years I have experimented with various products in an attempt to permanently repair cracks in ceilings. Today I share with you my secrets on “How To Repair Cracks In Ceilings” permanently.

Why Does My Ceiling Have Cracks?

There are several reasons why your ceiling may be cracking.

1) The wooden ceiling joists that plasterboard are attached to expand and contract. This movement causes cracks mostly at the location of the plasterboard joints.

2) New homes are plagued with shrinkage cracks due to the wood used in construction shrinking causing settlement cracks. Cracks in newly built houses can appear not only on the ceilings but walls to. Every house will go through a settlement phase, after a few years, the cracks once repaired should not reappear.

3) Poor construction, in most cases plasterboard sheets are secured to the ceiling joists using cheap clout nails. Unfortunately nails are not as effective at limiting the amount of movement (expansion, contraction) as Plasterboard Screws.

There are nails available called, Passivated Clout Nails which have threaded rings around the shaft. These type of nails have a similar effect to screws, increasing holding power.

How To Repair Cracks In Ceilings

The first step to successfully repairing a ceiling crack is to understand that filler alone will only temporarily repair, disguise the crack. If the crack has appeared due to movement, then it will reappear.

How then do you permanently fix cracks in ceilings? The answer, Toupret Fibacryl Flexible Repair Filler. Using a filler that naturally moves with the ceiling is the key.

Below I have detailed the steps on how to repair cracks in ceilings.

Step 1

Use either a Stanley Knife or a Painters Multi Tool to open the crack. I realise that it may seem absurd to purposely make the crack worse, but without enough width and depth, the flexible filler has nothing to adhere to. When opening the crack try to create a V, wider at the surface and narrow at the deepest point.

bahco stanley and purdy multi tool

Step 2

Take your Toupret Fibacryl Cartridge and using your stanley knife cut a 45 degree angle at the nozzle. Next insert the cartridge into a Painters Caulking Gun and squeeze the filler into the crack.

Step 3

Using a damp cloth dampen your finger and run it over the fibacryl pushing it into the crack. Leave enough room 1-2 mm for the final step (skimming).

NOTE : Wait 30 mins – 1 hour before moving onto step 4

Step 4

Take your Toupret Interior Filler and Flexible Mixing Bowl and mix up some interior filler. Using a Flex Filling Knife skim over the crack and wait until dry. Mix up more toupret filler and skim the crack again, wait until dry and move onto the last step.

I find it beneficial to work with a 6 Inch Flex Knife and 3 Inch Flex Knife. Once the filler is mixed, transfer onto the larger flex knife and use the smaller 3 inch one to work with.

After you have filled the remaining 1-2mm with toupret interior filler, remember to run your flex knife over the crack to remove any excess filler. This means that when you come to your second fill, you do not need to sand the area.

toupret filler, flexible mixing bowl, flex knife

Step 5

Sand the filler using 120 Grade Sandpaper attached to a Hand Sander until the filler is flush with the surface. The ceiling is now ready for painting, you do not need to prime or mist coat toupret interior filler as it does not flash.

how to repair cracks in ceilings

Toupret Fibacryl can be used on (Gypsum plaster, Plasterboards, Painted or Unpainted surfaces, Concrete, Cement, Breeze blocks, Bricks, Stones, Primed woods, Mortar).

Available in 350ml cartridges, 1kg, 5kg tubs, further information can be found on the product data sheet below.

Fibacryl Flexible Filler Alternative

I should mention that there is another product that can be used to fix cracks in ceiling. CT1 Multi Purpose Sealant Adhesive, bonds to: (metals, glass, wood, plasterboard, brick), does not shrink, can be painted and is also flexible.

What I love about CT1 is that it can be used for a variety of applications interior and exterior, I have used it for 1) Filling large gaps between skirting boards and walls prior to painting 2) Fixing architrave and skirting to walls 3) Repairing cracks in ceilings 4) Waterproofing PVC window frames.

how to repair cracks in ceilings

CT1 comes in a variety of colours (anthracite, beige, black, brown, grey, oak, silver, white) 

Either products will provide a permanent solution to fixing cracks in ceilings. If you do choose CT1 Adhesive instead of Toupret Fibacryl, ensure that you follow the steps above as the process to repair cracks is the same for both flexible fillers. Further information the uses for CT1 can be found on the product data sheet link below.

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This blog is a personal blog written and edited by me (Andrew Firth). For questions about this blog, please contact andrew@clearcutpainting.co.uk

Some posts contain Amazon affiliate links. I may earn a small commission when those links are clicked on and a product is purchased. There is no additional costs to you.

The compensation received will NEVER influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. The views and opinions expressed on this blog are purely mine.

How long does it takes to paint a room? A great question with various answers. In todays article I’m going to use a previous example of an average sized bedroom 13ft x 14ft with a small bay window.

The house was built approximately 55 years ago and all plaster work was original. Renovations prior to painting consisted of a 3 column upright radiator, wooden flooring and MDF skirting and architrave fitted.

Job consisted of restoring plaster work, removing polystyrene coving and painting both walls and ceiling with Little Greene Intelligent Matt Emulsion. Woodwork was to be finished with Little Greene Intelligent Eggshell.

Preparing Old Walls For Painting

As I mentioned earlier the house was several decades old and the plaster was in poor condition, (pitted, scraped, scuffs, gouges) with plaster patches after a rewire.

Normally you could use a Hand Sander or Pole Sander to remove any roughness from the plaster prior to painting. Unfortunately In this example, extreme measures where required.

Earlier last year I purchased a Mirka Deros Orbital Sander and Mirka Dust Extractor for the purposes of restoring plaster and removing harmful dust particles.

Mirka manufacture the best orbital sanders, without it I would have been forced to either turn down the job. Or alternatively advice that the walls and ceiling where freshly skimmed.

how long does it take to paint a room

At the very bottom of this post I have included a gallery of Before & After photos showing the condition of the room at start of the project and at the end.

Sanding Walls Before Painting

Total time sanding walls and ceiling = 12 hours

Shocked? I agree, 12 hours is a long time prepping a room before painting. Below I have detailed the process and time taken.

1) Sanded both walls and ceiling using 80 Grade Abranet Discs attached to Mirka Deros Sander
2) Filled walls and ceiling using Toupret Interior Filler
3) Continued sanding, still using 80 grade abranet disc
4) Second fill, again using Toupret Interior Filler
5) More sanding using a finer 120 Grade Abranet Disc
6) Base coated the walls with Macpherson Eclipse Matt Emulsion
7) Continue to fill once paint was dry
8) Waited 24 hours before final LIGHT sand with 120 grade abranet disc

I should mention that 12 hours did not include drying times for filler. It does however include, base coating walls and ceiling, caulking around the ceiling, skirting boards, architrave, window and edges of walls.

Painters TIP: When filling scrapes, dinges, and holes, use an LED Inspection Lamp or Daylight Work Lamp. Shine the light upwards against the wall and you will be amazed by how much light reveals. The technique is particularly effective as natural light fades.

How Long Does It Take To Paint A Room

Once the preparation process is finished your ready to start painting. As I was going to be painting using a designer paint brand (Little Greene) which is expensive. Base coating the walls and ceiling is recommended for several reasons.

1) Due to the extensive sanding process there where more than a dozen patches of exposed plaster. Not to mention the 2 kilos of Toupret Interior Filler now on the walls and ceiling. Base coating the walls and ceiling with Macpherson Eclipse Matt Emulsion helped to seal the patches of bare plaster and filler.

2) Exposed plaster must be mist coated before painting. When using an expensive brand of paint, coating the walls and ceiling first will seal the plaster, reduce paint absorption and increase paint coverage.

Order Of Painting A Room

Each painter has their preferred order when comes to painting a room. Below is how I paint a room and achieve a professional finish.

1) Paint the ceiling first, wait 2 – 4 hours then apply the second coat.

2) Woodwork is next, during the preparation process I had filled, sanded and undercoated skirting boards, window sill and architrave. I applied the first coat of Little Greene Intelligent Eggshell waited until dry (2 hours) then lightly sanded all woodwork with a 120 Grade Foam Sanding Block before applying the final coat of eggshell.

3) I waited 24 hours after painting woodwork then masked of skirting boards using Scotchblue Painter’s Masking Tape. I use the 38mm width version and let the excess hang over the skirting boards acting as a paint shield.

4) Finally I painted the walls, waited 2 – 4 hours before applying the second, finish coat of paint.

Painters TIP: Freshly applied paint goes through a curing process, it very easy to damage paint work before it has a chance to harden (cure). For this reason it is a good idea to wait at least 24 hours before moving furniture back into the room.

how long does it take to paint a room

How Long Does It Take To Paint A Room = 17.5 hours

From start to finish including all prep work, base coating walls and ceiling, final coats of eggshell and emulsion. The total amount of “Working Hours” calculated over 3 days was 17.5 hours.

Little Greene Intelligent Matt Emulsion Review

How Much Does It Cost To Paint A Room

Below is a complete breakdown of materials and labour costs

  • Little Greene Intelligent Matt Emulsion 7.5 litres: £126
  • Little Greene Intelligent Eggshell 1 litre: £31
  • Toupret Interior Filler 2 kg: £15.94
  • 1/4 Roll Scotchblue Masking Tape: £2.10
  • Zinsser 123 Bullseye Primer: £5
  • 5 Litres Macpherson Eclipse Matt Emulsion: 18.99
  • 4 Abranet Sanding Discs: £3
  • Labour at 17.5 hours over 3 days: £360

Cost To Paint A Room Professionally = £563.03 

What if the room had of been re-skimmed (plastered) prior to painting, how much more would it have cost. For an average sized room 13ft x 14ft based on my location, Northern Ireland. Replastering a room would have cost between £350 – £500 including materials.

If we were to base the figure on the lower amount of £350 then add the cost of paint and labour. The total cost would have been £796 taking into account the reduction in toupret filler, abranet sanding discs and labour.

NOTE: Prices for labour have not accounted for drying times of (filler, primer, emulsion paints). As a professional painter, jobs are booked on a per day basis taking into account drying times.

I charge £120 per day, pricing this job for a customer, I estimated 3 days labour at £360 not including materials.

Obviously if you were painting the room yourself you would save money on labour costs, but would need to hire a professional orbital sander and dust extraction system.

A full list of painting tools used can be found in an earlier article, “How To Paint A Room Like A professional”.

Time To Paint A Room (gallery)

In case you’re curious the colours are Little Greene (slaked lime) and for woodwork Little Green (shirting)

Clear Cut Painting delivers professional painting services across the North Down area to include (bangor, newtownards, holywood).


This blog is a personal blog written and edited by me (Andrew Firth). For questions about this blog, please contact andrew@clearcutpainting.co.uk

Some posts contain Amazon affiliate links. I may earn a small commission when those links are clicked on and a product is purchased. There is no additional costs to you.

The compensation received will NEVER influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. The views and opinions expressed on this blog are purely mine.

Ever tried painting over a water stain only to find that it doesn’t cover, well you’re not alone. A common, but all too frustrating a problem, “How To Paint Over Water Stains”? The good news is that with just one simple step, your water stains will be gone forever.

Brown Stains Coming Through Paint

Water stains are generally found on ceilings, cracked or loose tiles, leaking pipes, faulty plumbing can contribute to water damage. You can easily spot a water stain, they are either brown or yellow in colour.

Depending on how bad the water leak has been and for long long it has gone unnoticed will determine just how severe the water stain will be. In most cases even bad water stains can be successfully repaired using one of several products which I explain in more detail below.

Although it may seem obvious, ensure that before starting attempt to paint over the water stain, that 1) The original cause of the water leak has been fixed 2) Adequate time is allowed for the affected area to fully dry.

Stain Blocking Paint

As I mentioned earlier, ridding yourself of water stains is a relatively simple process (1 Step), if you have the right products. Below are 3 stain blocking primers used not only to paint over water stains but also (nicotten, smoke, crayon, permanent marker, pencil, mould).

1) Zinsser 123 Bullseye
2) Zinsser Bin Shellac
3) Zinsser Cover Stain

So what’s the difference between the three products above I here you ask. Depending on the severity of your stain or stains will determine what product you use.

how to paint over water stains

The good news is that they all work at effectively covering/blocking water stains on walls or ceilings. I keep all three products in my work van and use two of them daily.

If I had choose just one product that will cover all types of stains (nicotten, smoke, crayon, permanent marker, pencil, mould, water). I would choose, Zinsser Bin Shellac as my go to stain blocker.

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Stain Blockers Reviewed Zinsser

Bullseye 123: My favourite Zinsser product and one that I use on a daily basis for varying situations. Out of the three products, Bullseye 123 Primer Sealer is the only one that is water based, the other two are solvent based. What do I use Zinsser Bullseye Primer for?

1) Priming bare timber prior to undercoating
2) Spot priming caulking before emulsion paint
3) Sealing and priming MDF
4) Covering/blocking stains, mostly water stains
5) Priming silk emulsion walls before applying matt emulsion
6) Painting walls and ceilings after wallpaper removal

BIN Shellac: My go to product for coating any surface that has a particularly shiny or glossy surface prior to undercoating. When other products fail to block stubborn stains, you can rely of Zinsser BIN to KILL the stain.

1) Priming varnished surfaces
2) Blocking stubborn stains (nicotine, tar, oil, crayon, permanent marker)

Zinsser also manufacture a spray paint to cover stains, Zinsser Primer Stain Killer Aerosol, perfect for situations where you have a small patch or patches of water stains. No need for a brush, just spray the water stain, wait until dry and apply a second coat.

Not recommended for large areas.

Cover Stain: I tend use cover stain less than the two products above for one main reason. It takes longer to dry, as a painter and decorator, time is money, I need products that dry fast. Cover stain has the same properties as BIN shellac and if time allows I will also use it to cover stubborn stains or prime bare wood.

The only negative point I would add is that both Zinsser Cover Stain and BIN Shellac are difficult to wash out of brushes. White spirit has little to no effect when it comes to cleaning your brush.

Brush and Roller Cleaner

There is an excellent product available, Zinsser Brush Cleaner and Restorer that will clean your brushes after using solvent based primers. While it does an excellent job, even restoring old hard brushes, it is expensive.

I recommend keeping an old brush continually dipped in either of the solvent based primers ready to be used. Rather than attempting to clean your brush after each occasion you need use the stain killer.

If your only treating one stain, then you will either need to clean the brush after or throw it away. That’s one of the main reasons why Bullseye 123 is my favorite stain killer/primer as you can wash both rollers and brushes with water.

The downside is, that both Zinsser Cover Stain and BIN shellac are better at covering stubborn stains.

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How To Paint Over Water Stains

Below is a small list of materials you will need when painting over water stains. There really isn’t much required but there are a few essential items that will help to get the job done faster will little to no mess.

1) Polythene Backed Dust Sheet (drop cloth)
2) Silverline 2 inch Brush
3) Werner Fibreglass Step Ladders
4) Prodec Microfibre Mini Covers & Frame
5) Prodec 2.5 Litre Paint Scuttle

Remember if you are using any of the two solvent based stain killers, cover everything that you don’t want paint on. Unlike Bullseye 123 Primer that can be removed with water, the others stick like SHIT, require special paint removers and are very difficult to remove.

Unless using the water based primer, as a rule, don’t use your good Purdy 2 Inch Brush. The same applies if your using a mini roller cover, purchase the cheap Microfiber Covers and throw away after use.

When treating stains that are small in size I tend to just use a brush. Apply a liberal amount of paint to the stain and wait until it drys, once dry recoat and leave to dry. You should notice that after two coats of a stain blocker that the stain is no longer visible.

Larger areas with significant water damage are treated with a brush a mini roller combination. I use microfibre 4 Inch Mini Rollers Covers as they are cheap to replace.

how to paint over water stains

Water damage on ceilings

Stop Water Stains Bleeding Through Paint

You are now ready to apply your top coats of paint. Don’t be alarmed if you notice the patch or patches of anti stain paint showing through the emulsion. As the emulsion dries the opacity increases and the patch will disappear, if it doesn’t after the first coat it will once a second coat of emulsion is applied.

Traditionally painting directly over water stains with emulsion paint would fail, resulting in water stains bleeding through the paint. By using any of the three stain blockers above will effectively block stains permanently, with no bleed through.

16 Essential Must Have Painting Tools


This blog is a personal blog written and edited by me (Andrew Firth). For questions about this blog, please contact andrew@clearcutpainting.co.uk

Some posts contain Amazon affiliate links. I may earn a small commission when those links are clicked on and a product is purchased. There is no additional costs to you.

The compensation received will NEVER influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. The views and opinions expressed on this blog are purely mine. If I claim or appear to be an expert on a certain topic or product or service area, I will only endorse products or services that I believe (based on my expertise), are worthy of such endorsement.

I’m not what you would call an impulse buyer, I research all new purchases, especially when it’s new equipment for my business, Clear Cut Painting. I spend hours trawling the internet, reading reviews, watching YouTube videos. So when it came to purchasing a new sander I researched the topic for weeks, looking for the “Best Random Orbital Sander” on the market

What Is A Random Orbital Sander?

Random orbital sanders are perfect for tough sanding jobs where you need to remove a lot of material. They can also be used for fine sanding, including polishing. The head of the tool features a round base plate that oscillates (spins) and vibrates simultaneously.

Sanding discs are attached to the bottom of the base plate through a velcro hook and loop system. Random orbital sanders can be used for all types of sanding work without concerns for grain direction.

Sanding discs can be purchased in varied grades depending on the material being sanded. Lower the number (60,80), the courser the sandpaper. Coarse sanding discs are used when you need to remove a lot of material fast.

Best Random Orbital Sander?

So what is the best random orbital sander on the market. Mirka are the leadning  manufature of electric sanders and dust extractors for both professionals and DIY enthusiasts. I ended up purchasing the Mirka DEROS 5650CV Sander 240v in combination with the Mirka 1230L Dust Extractor. It was better value to purchase a KIT which included:

  • 1 x Mirka DEROS 5650CV Orbital Sander
  • Professional Site Case (Systainer)
  • Backing Pads 125mm & 150mm
  • Mirka 4 metre dust extraction hose
  • 150mm Mirka Abranet Discs: 10 x P80, 20 x P120, 20 x P180

Best Sander For Walls

Earlier in 2019 myself and my wife purchased an older house built in 1976. One of the first issues I noticed was the condition of the plastered walls. The previous owners had stripped wood chip off the walls and ceilings and in the process scraped, scored and gouged the plaster.

There were two options available 1) Pay to have all the walls and ceilings re-skimmed 2) Purchase a sander for walls and do it myself.

I was confident that by purchasing one of the best orbital sanders on the market, I could restore the condition of the plaster without the cost of re-skimming the walls.

Within the first minutes of using the Mirka sander, I new I had made the right decision, The sander was a dream to use, lightweight, quiet and very powerful.

I started with an 80 Grade Abranet Disc to sand the walls smooth. Next I filled all the scrapes, gouges, and holes using Toupret Interior Filler. Once the filler was dry I swapped the disc for a 120 Grade Abranet Disc and continued to sand. I filled the walls and ceiling one more time using an LED light to highlight any flaws I may have missed.

A final sand using 120 Grade Abranet Disc and the room was finished. The results were impressive, super smooth plaster minus the hundreds of gouges and scrapes.

Best Orbital Sander For Dust Collection

Sanding plaster walls without the use of a dust extractor is very dirty work. Apart from the mess, there is of course the health implications associated with continuously breathing dust into your lungs. It is essential that when sanding especially with a Mirka DEROS orbital sander that you connect the tool to a dust extraction system. Mirka have specifically designed their sanders to work seamlessly with their dust extractors.

best random orbital sanderUsing the Mirka DEROS random orbital sander in combination with the Mirka dust extractor removed 99% of all dust.

Mirka Abranet Sanding Discs

The abranet sanding discs are suitable for various application (automotive, boat building, decorators, construction). Made from durable mesh fabric (polyamide), the open net weave construction allows for maximum dust extraction.

Abranet sanding discs can be purchased in boxes of 3, 10, or 50 discs and are available in: (80, 120, 150, 180, 220, 240, 320, 360, 400, 500, 600, 800, 100) grades.

I’ll admit I had hesitations with regards to how durable a mesh sanding disc would be. Now after using the Mirka DEROS sander with the Abranet Discs for a little over a year. I can say that the discs are tough, on an average sized room, I will use 1 x 80 grade and 1 x 120 grade discs for a flawless finish.

Taking into account that each sanding discs costs 0.78 pence per disc based on purchasing a box of 50. The abranet discs are worth the cost, provide and superior finish with outstanding dust extraction.

best random orbital sanderTip : Keep your worn discs, they can be reused for projects that require a finer abrasive.

If your considering investing in a new random orbital sander. I highly recommend the Mirka Deros 5650cv in combination with the 1230L Mirka Extractor. The Mirka DEROS is a pleasure to use, lightweight, fast, excellent build quality with a well designed palm trigger.

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This blog is a personal blog written and edited by me (Andrew Firth). For questions about this blog, please contact andrew@clearcutpainting.co.uk

Some posts contain Amazon affiliate links. I may earn a small commission when those links are clicked on and a product is purchased. There is no additional costs to you

One of the most hated jobs, DIY wallpaper removal, tedious, uninteresting and of course very frustrating. If you would like tips on “How To Remove Wallpaper Fast”, keep reading. I cover 3 steps to effectively removing wallpaper easily with no stress.

If you considering employing services of a painter and decorator to remove your wallpaper, STOP. Save yourself the money by doing it yourself, stripping wallpaper is not a highly skilled job, its simply labour intensive. Below I have detailed the steps, products and correct order for fast wallpaper removal in 3 steps.

Step 1: Scoring The Wallpaper

All wallpaper has a top layer that in most cases is waterproof, meaning that no matter how much you wet the outer layer. The moisture will not soak through to the backing paper. The first step is to score the outer layer of the wallpaper allowing your wallpapering stripping solution to penetrate through the top layer of paper.

This can be easily achieved using a simple tool, Zinsser Paper Tiger. The painter’s tool has three independent wheels with two circular discs per wheel. Each metal disc is covered in small teeth (spikes) that score the wallpaper. Essentially when using the paper tiger you’re piercing hundreds of tiny holes through the outer surface of the wallpaper.

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Zinsser paper tigers effect on wallpaper

How To Use The Zinsser Paper Tiger?

Using the paper tiger is a relatively simply process. Place the scoring tool into the palm of your hand and using a circular motion score the top layer of wallpaper. You don’t need to apply a lot of pressure as the paper tiger will do the work for you. The goal is to pierce through the outer layer, applying too much pressure or using the tool in a forceful manner can 1) Damage the teeth of the tool 2) Increase the risk of scoring the plaster beneath the wallpaper.

how to remove wallpaper fast

Zinsser paper tiger scoring tool

I personally prefer to use the paper tiger to score the wallpaper on one wall at a time and then soak the wallpaper, which i’m going to cover in the next step.

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Step 2: Soaking The Wallpaper

The most effective way I have found to soak the wallpaper after scoring is to use a combination of two products. 1) Spray the walls with a Garden Pressure Sprayer, its fast, saves bending up and down and you uses less water 2) Add one of best wallpaper solutions on the market, Zinsser DIF Concentrate Wallpaper Stripper at a ratio of: 75ml per 1 litres of warm water.

Don’t make the mistake of thinking more is better, follow the dilution instructions. Zinsser wallpaper stripper is strong, add to much and you run the risk of stripping any emulsion paint that may be on the plaster behind the wallpaper.

how to remove wallpaper fast

Zinsser DIF & Garden Pressure Sprayer

Always where a Respirator Mask, Safety Glasses and Latex Gloves when working with chemicals.

Step 3: Wallpaper Removal

As I mentioned above, I tend to score one wall at a time and then use the Garden Sprayer in combination with Zinsser DIF to spray the wall. I then leave the wall to soak and score the next wall, after 15 mins I go back and test the previous wall.

If the wallpaper is not coming off with ease, spray the wall for a second time and leave for a further 15 mins. In most cases this does the trick, with both the top layer and backing paper coming off together.

You don’t need any fancy tools for removing wallpaper, a simple 3 Inch Flex Knife will get the job done. Once the wallpaper is soaked thoroughly, use the flex knife to raise a corner or seam of the wallpaper. Once it starts to lift, continue using  your fingers to peel the wallpaper from the wall. If you have followed the steps above correctly, the wallpaper should peel off in large sections (strips).

There have been several occasions using the 3 steps above that I have removed the wallpaper from an average sized room in 60 mins. Of course this is not always the case, there are circumstances where stripping wallpaper does take longer, which I talk about below.

How Do I Remove Difficult Wallpaper?

Of course there are wallpapers that are more difficult to remove than others. For instance, woodchip, or any wallpaper that has numerous layers of paint on the surface, generally take longer to remove.

The process for removing difficult wallpaper is the same as above. Follow the 3 steps outlined in this article, how to remove wallpaper fast is relatively easy, if you take “extra time” to score the surface of the wallpaper. This gives Zinsser Wallpaper Stripper the opportunity to penetrate the layers behind the surface.

Another popular wallpaper removal method is to use a machine, Wallpaper Stripper (steamer). The principles are the same, score the surface allowing for the steam to soften the paste behind the surface.

In my experience this method is effective, but very slow and tedious. You gradually move the steamer plate from one section of wallpaper to another, waiting each time until the steam penetrates the lower surface before stripping the wallpaper.

Wallpaper Removal Hacks

  • Score the upper layer of wallpaper with the Zinsser Paper Tiger
  • Spray the Wallpaper, let it soak for 15 mins, then respray total wait time 30 mins
  • Use warm water when mixing Zinsser Dif in spray container as helps to soften the paste on the wall
  • Flex knife is only used to lift corners of wallpaper, then continue to peel sections of wallpaper using your fingers
  • Lay a drop cloth to avoid the glue residue from wallpaper and paste sticking to floor

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This blog is a personal blog written and edited by me (Andrew Firth). For questions about this blog, please contact andrew@clearcutpainting.co.uk

Some posts contain affiliate links. I may earn a small commission when those links are clicked on and a product is purchased. There is no additional costs to you.

The compensation received will NEVER influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. The views and opinions expressed on this blog are purely mine. If I claim or appear to be an expert on a certain topic or product or service area, I will only endorse products or services that I believe (based on my expertise), are worthy of such endorsement.

One of the most popular trends to extending the functionality of your garden, is by adding wooden decking. It not only increases the value of your property, but extends your living and play space. Both adults and children can benefit from a custom fitted wooden deck. Today’s article covers deck maintenance, “how to treat decking timber”, new and old.

How To Treat A New Wooden Deck

Have you just had some new decking installed? before winter sets in ensure you protect the wood from our harsh UK weather. The good news is that most decking timber is pressure treated to protect the wood, this doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t treat the timber within the first few weeks of installation.

The advantage of treating a new deck before it gets a lot of use is 1) Its generally clean, free from dirt and grease 2) You don’t need to pressure wash the timber before treating.

The image below is a perfect example of a new decking installation, the wood is dry and ready to receive its first coat of Decking Oil. If your timber is dark green in colour and feels damp to the touch or beads of water lie on the timber, similar to the surface of a freshly waxed car, meaning that there is a waxy residue on the surface.

Wait before applying your decking oil, the timber must be dry, this will ensure the wood soaks up the decking paint.

New decking installation ready to treat

Painters Tool List

Below are the tools and decking treatment required to treat your new wood deck.

Use your 3 inch brush to paint any areas that are not accessible with the mini roller (edges, corners, rails). The Wooster Brush Holder enables the brush to be attached to the extension pole, allowing the user to stay in an upright position while painting.

When all the (edges, corners, rails) are treated, detach the wooster brush holder and attach your Purdy Jumbo Roller Frame with your 1/2 Inch Roller Cover. Work from the furthest corner ensuring to roll a full decking board before moving onto the next one.

Avoid overlapping previously coated sections of decking boards, this will cause an uneven, patchy look with fluctuations in colour.

Don’t make the mistake of working yourself into a corner and then having to walk over the treated timber as this will leave footprints.

Equipment Required

6 Inch Purdy Half Inch Roller Sleeve
Purdy Jumbo Mini Roller Frame
Purdy Extension Pole 2 – 4ft
5 Litre Paint Scuttle
3 Inch Paint Brush
Wooster Brush Holder
Liberon 5 x Litres Decking Oil (clear)
White Spirits

Best Deck Sealer For Pressure Treated Wood

Decking timber treatments come in both water and oil based stains, oil being the preferred choice by users. Decking oil enhances the look of the timber and ages naturally with the wood. Oil wood preserve penetrates deeper into the grain of the wood extending the life of your timber deck.

What is the best decking oil, stain for pressure treated timber? Personally from experience I would recommend Liberon Decking Oil, available in (clear, oak, teak).

Note: Remember your timber deck will naturally age (darken) so choosing a clear stain might be a good choice. You can always darken at a later stage, but you can’t lighten the timber once stained with a colour.

16 Must Have Painting Tools 

Wood Deck Rejuvenation

What about older decking? Depending on the age of your wooden decking and how often it has been treated. There is a high probability, due to our wet climate, that mold (algae) can grow (especially in shaded areas). The build up of algae, moss, dirt and grease can overtime, lead to the timber becoming slippery underfoot. 

You can purchase products that are designed to KILL mould (algae), Wet & Forget – Moss Mould Lichen & Algae Remover. While they may kill algae, you still have to remove the dead mold, dirt and grime that has built up on the surface. 

Most timber decks that have been installed several years ago will require pressure washed before treating. This will ensure that all (dirt, grime, mold) has been removed before restaining. Once the timber has been thoroughly cleaned it must be sealed shortly after to protect the wood. Remember to leave enough time to power wash and seal the deck within a few days.

TIP: Be careful when pressure washing not to damage the decking boards by holding the lance to close to the timber.

How To Preserve A New Fence

Maintaining Wood Decking

The decking in the image below was treated with Liberon Decking Oil (clear), as you can see the timber has darkened considerably after only one coat of decking oil. The size of the deck was 4m x 4m (13ft x 13ft) and took 10 litres of decking oil to apply two coats.

how to treat decking timber

After just one coat of Liberon Decking Oil

Did you find this article on “How To Treat Decking Timber” useful? check out my Blog for other helpful how to articles, painter tips and tricks.


This blog is a personal blog written and edited by me (Andrew Firth). For questions about this blog, please contact andrew@clearcutpainting.co.uk

Some posts contain affiliate links. I may earn a small commission when those links are clicked on and a product is purchased. There is no additional costs to you.

The compensation received will NEVER influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. The views and opinions expressed on this blog are purely mine. If I claim or appear to be an expert on a certain topic or product or service area, I will only endorse products or services that I believe (based on my expertise), are worthy of such endorsement.

One of my pet peeves, MOLD, I hate the stuff, not because of the damage it causes, but the health implications that are associated with the fungus. Unfortunately mold is an all to familiar problem in the UK, due to our damp climate. Mold can grow in any area of your house, especially where there is poor ventilation and excessive moisture, so bathrooms are a particularly troublesome. Today’s article covers how to Kill Mould and the best bathroom paint to prevent mold from returning.

Mold and Your Health

Exposure to moldy environments can cause a variety of health effects. Some people are more sensitive to molds than others and can suffer from nasal stuffiness, throat irritation, coughing, wheezing, eye and skin irritation. Recent studies have suggested a potential link between the early development of asthma in children, who may be genetically susceptible to asthma.

I have personally suffered the effects from mold, so can sympathise with anyone who has been affected by mold related allergies.

Inhalational Health Effects of Mold

How To Identify Mold

Mold tends to be green or black, and feels slimy to the touch. Mold loves to grow in places with lots of moisture, leaking roofs, corners of windows, bathroom ceilings, any area where there is excess moisture. Mould can also grow in wallpaper, carpet, fabric, and upholstery.

Mold growing at the corners of window

How To KILL Mould

There are several popular chemical sprays that you can purchase for killing mould, HG Mould Remover Foam Spray and Dryzone 100 Mold Remover. But to be honest you can achieve the same results with your typical household bleach at a ratio of 50% bleach to 50% water. For example if you were to pour 100 ml of bleach into a container, dilute the bleach with the equivalent measurement of water, 100 ml.

Warning: before you start removing mold, you MUST wear a Respirator Mask to avoid breathing the harmful spores that will be released into the air during the cleaning process. It is also recommended that a pair of Safety Glasses be worn. Especially if you are working over head to protect your eyes and a pair of Rubber Gloves to protect your hands.

Rember to open a window if possible allowing for fresh air to circulate. Remove as much of the mould as possible and leave the area to dry for 24 hours before painting.

Best Bathroom Paint to Prevent Mold

Once you have killed and removed the mould, it’s time to paint. Being a fan of Zinnser paint products, I’m going to recommend a particular product designed for high moisture areas, Zinnser Perma White Interior Mould Resistant Paint. Resists cracking, peeling and blistering, scrubbable and lasts for up to 7 years, available in (matt and satin finishes).

Does Anti Mold Paint Work?

Several months ago I was contacted by a customer who had a recurring issue with her ensuite bathroom ceiling. The paint was  peeling badly, flaking and there was a considerable amount of mold growth. The issue had been fixed several times by other decorators without success, a matter of months would pass by and the problem would re-appear.

To answer the question above, does anti mould paint work? YES, if the necessary steps are taken which I’ll explain below.

How To Fix Peeling Paint

You might be interested in an earlier article I wrote on “How To Paint Over Peeling Paint” which in this particular situation has some relevance. Below were the steps taken to resolve the issue permanently.

Step 1) Paint Removal

All flaking, peeling paint was scraped from the ceiling using a Purdy 3 Inch Flex Knife. There were several cracks in the plasterboard that where scraped and opened up using a 6 in 1 Multi Tool. For safety reasons, a Respiratory Mask and Safety Glasses were worn.

Step 2) Sanding Preparation

The ceiling was thoroughly sanded using 80 grade sandpaper attached to a Mirka Deros Sander to key the surface. Once the last remnants of loose paint were removed and the edges of any existing paint were feathered.

Term, Key a Surface : Using materials such as sandpaper, wet-or-dry, sanding discs, too smooth down a surface prior to painting. To key a surface helps with absorbency for future coats of paints.

Step 3) Seal and Fill

Using a combination of CT1 Construction Adhesive and Toupret Interior Filler all cracks and imperfections were filled. I squeezed the CT1 adhesive into any deep cracks creating a waterproof seal while strengthening the plasterboard. I then skimmed over the cracks and any uneven patches with Toupret filler.

The use of an LED light especially in low light conditions helps to identify scrapes, dents, holes and any other imperfections.

Step 4) Sanding Further Prep

Same process as earlier only this time using 120 Grade sandpaper instead of 80 grade. A Mirka Deros Sander was used attached to a Mirka Extractor to remove all dust. Using your own sense of touch is the best indication of smoothness, highlighting if any additional filling and sanding is necessary.

Step 5) Perma-White Interior Paint

Zinnser perma-white mould paint can be applied directly to bare plaster without having to mist coat. Using a combination of brush and roller, apply the first coat evenly and wait 2 hours until dry. I used Scotchblue Painters Masking Tape to ensure sharp edges and stop any paint transferring onto the tiles and grout.

best bathroom paint to prevent mold

5 x coats of perma-white-anti-mould-paint (satin)

Once the paint has dried, use a 120 Grade Foam Sanding Block to key the surface lightly in preparation for the next coat of paint. Every coat of paint should subsequently be sanded before applying the next coat, this 1) Smooths the surface 2) Keys the previous layer of paint allowing for better adhesion.

As you can see from the image above the damage to the ceiling was extensive. Total time to fix was 10 hours, drying time considerably slowed the repair.

Avoid Mold In Bathrooms

Ventilation is key, most bathrooms have small fans to help in removing steam (moisture), but most are completely useless. Below are my tips to avoiding mold growth in bathrooms.

1) Open your window even if it’s just while having a bath or shower
2) If you don’t have a window, some ensuite bathrooms don’t, upgrade the extractor fan to a more powerful version
3) Use an Anti Mould Silicone to seal showers and baths
4) Coat the walls and ceiling using an anti mould paint like Zinsser Perma-White


This blog is a personal blog written and edited by me (Andrew Firth). For questions about this blog, please contact andrew@clearcutpainting.co.uk

Some posts contain affiliate links. I may earn a small commission when those links are clicked on and a product is purchased. There is no additional costs to you.

Due to wood being relatively inexpensive to purchase. Wooden fences are one of the most popular solutions to creating borders and perimeters around thousands of houses throughout the UK. While wood may not be the perfect solution considering our wet environment. Today’s article contains tips on How To Preserve A New Wood Fence that will last for years.

Preserving a New Wood Fence

Before starting to coat a new fence you must first wait until the moisture level within the wood drops to 18% or below. Most timber used in the UK for fence construction is pressure treated to preserve the wood. For this reason it is generally stored outside, which means that the timber used to construct your new fence will be saturated with water.

Pressuretreated timber is wood that has been saturated with chemical preservatives to protect the wood from rot and insects.

If you are installing individual boards on your fencing project, remember to take into consideration the moisture content in the wood. Why? because the initial gap between the fencing boards will increase as the boards dry out.

While installing a perimeter fence around my garden I purposely set a minimal gap between the fencing boards of 5mm. Once the boards where fully dry the gap increased to 15mm.

When To Treat a New Wooden Fence

New fence installations generally do not need to be treated for several months after they have been erected. You will notice over the following months that your new fence will change colour as it drys out.

Most new fences start out darker in colour with a distinctive green tinge, due the chemicals that have been infused with the timber. As they dry out, they turn a lighter colour and lose their green tinge. This is the ideal time to apply several coats of wood preservative.

How To Preserve A New Wooden Fence

New Fence 2 Months Old (NOT TREATED)

Best Wood Fence Treatment

If you are searching for a fence treatment that resists flaking, peeling and blistering with outstanding weather protection. Then Crown’s All Purpose Woodstain is an excellent choice. Available in (teak, mahogany, antique pine, light oak, dark walnut, ebony).

I have personally tested Crowns All Purpose Woodstain on my perimeter fence with great results. The fence in the image above was erected earlier this year and left to fully dry which took roughly 6 months.

After two coats of Crown All Purpose Woodstain

How To Stain A Fence Fast

If you have ever wood preserved a fence before, you will know all too well how “tedious” a job it can be. The perimeter fence in the images above took 2 hours to apply two coats (1 hour per coat) of Crown’s All Purpose Woodstain over two days. How? by using an airless paint sprayer.

I had been considering purchasing a cheap airless paint sprayer for my business, solely for the purposes of treating external wood fencing. After a little research, I decided to purchased the Wagner W 100 Electric Paint Sprayer for Wood & Metal.

Was it worth it? Absolutely, one of the best purchases I have made in a while. Spraying the fence saved me both time and provided a superior finish in comparison to a brush.

How to Treat Fence Panels

Considering treating your fence? Follow the steps below to ensure you achieve a professional finish. Using an airless sprayer is a dream in comparison to using a brush, but you still need to take a few precautions before starting to spray.

1) Ensure that you either use a new tin of wood stain or strain the preservative from an older, previously opened tin, before spraying. Airless sprayers can become blocked, to avoid this strain old woodstain first using an old pair of tights or nylon mesh paint strainers.

2) Cover bushes, shrubs, flowers and any others plants that might be in the way when spraying. Now might be good time to prune any bushes or trees that are touching the fence.

Also remember to cover any PVC frames and windows that are in close proximity of your fence. ProDec Advance Super Cling Dust Sheet is excellent for covering both plants, pvc frames and glass.

3) Use a hand brush to sweep away dust, dirt and cobwebs of the fencing panels/boards.

4) When spraying use long fluid strokes keeping the nozzle of the sprayer 6 – 8 inches away from the fence panels. If you are spraying individual boards, spray the edges first and then fill in the middle as you spray. I used a 3 inch purdy monarch paint brush to smooth out the preservative. This helped to work the woodstain into the boards and avoid runs.

Beads of water sitting of fence after treatment

How To Restain A Fence

Looking to restain an older fence? the process is the same as above with one additional step that must be completed before treating your fence. As your fence ages and due to our damp climate, green algae can grow if your fence is not treated regularly.

Algae can easily be removed using a pressure washer with a high enough PSI (pounds per square inch). Pressure washers with a PSI above 2000 will be adequate for removing algae. You can hire pressure washers by the day at any local hire store. Once you have removed all the green algae, wait until the fence is dry before following the steps above.

How Long Does A Wooden Fence Last

Wooden fences can easily last for 15 – 20 years if they are treated every couple of years. In addition to preserving your fence there are other steps that will ensure your fence lasts for years.

1) Remove any soil that may be resting against the fence, there should be a gap at the bottom of your fence to allow for air flow.

2) If possible, angle the concrete around your fence posts so that water runs away from the post rather than lying in a pool at the bottom of the fence post.

3) Trim back, trees, bushes, hedges and any other plants that are touching the fence. This will allow air to circulate, drying the fence after it becomes wet.


This blog is a personally written and edited by me (Andrew Firth). For questions about this blog, please contact andrew@clearcutpainting.co.uk

Some posts contain affiliate links. I may earn a small commission when those links are clicked on and a product is purchased. There is no additional costs to you.

The compensation received will NEVER influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. The views and opinions expressed on this blog are purely mine.

Over the years painting houses in the UK I have learned that having the right painting tools on hand increases productivity, reduces hours spent on projects and ensures a professional finish. Below are my “Top 16 Essential Painting Tools” for both professional painters and DIY Enthusiasts. All painting tools recommended below are currently used on a daily basis at Clear Cut Painting.

1) Purdy 12 – 18 inches Adjustable Roller Frame 

Adjustable roller frames are an essential accessory to any painters arsenal. Not only can you use a variety of different size roller sleeves but swapping roller sleeves when changing colour is simple. Purdy adjustable roller frames are robust and provide support to both sides of the roller cover, allowing for an even amount of pressure to be applied to the wall or ceiling when rolling.

2) Purdy Power Lock Extension Pole 2 – 4 ft

Painters extension poles are used to extend your reach allowing you to paint all areas of a room with ease. The purdy power lock extension pole fits all purdy adjustable roller frames. Simple push the end of the extension pole into the roller frame until it clicks into place. There is a large button on the extension pole which allows for the inner sleeve to be extended.

If your planning on painting high ceilings or hallways I recommend purchasing the longer Purdy Power Lock Extension Pole 4 – 8 ft version. I own both, the small extension pole for walls and the larger 4 – 8 ft for ceiling and hallways.

3) Hamilton 12 inch Perfection Microfibre Roller Sleeve

After testing numerous roller sleeves I have settled on the Hamilton Perfection Roller Sleeve for several reasons. 1) Minimal paint spray 2) Easy and fast to clean  3) Affordable to replace 4) Leaves a smooth paint finish

There are of course other roller sleeves that will leave a slightly smoother spray like finish on walls and ceilings. For example the Purdy White Dove 3/8 nap is an excellent roller. Not as durable as the hamilton roller sleeve, takes longer to clean and costs more.

If your painting multiple rooms or a very large area then the purdy white dove is a great option. Once fully saturated in paint, the roller coverage per dip is very impressive and the finish is excellent. As most of my work are residential houses and involves swapping roller covers during colour changes, the hamilton roller sleeve ticks all the boxes.

4) Scotchblue Painters Masking Tape

My favourite masking tape, I purchase by the box, 48 rolls as I use Scotchblue masking tape on every job I am on. Why do I love it so much? 1) Simple to apply and removes without tearing 2) Stops paint from bleeding through onto the masked surface 3) Can be applied to fresh paint 4) Reduces clean up time at the end of projects.

5) Purdy Clearcut Angular Trim Paint Brush

One of the most important pieces of painting equipment a “Professional Paint Brush”. Create beautiful straight lines around ceilings, across skirting boards and around architrave with a Purdy angled paint brush. I own several 2.5 inch angled purdy brushes that I use for cutting in with emulsion paints. When painting woodwork I use the, Purdy XL elite sprig brush 2-1/2 inch.

There are 3 inch versions of both brushes available, personally for my work, I find the 2.5 inch versions perfect for most situations. 

6) Purdy Carbon Steel Joint Knife

You will probably find it necessary to purchase two flex jointing knives, one smaller Purdy 3 inch flex knife and the larger 6 inch Purdy Jointing Knife. The larger filler knife can be used to hold the mixed filler while using the smaller flex knife to fill scrapes, dinges and holes.

I tend to swap between the two flex knifes depending on the size of the area needing filled. Sections of walls that have been tracked, plug sockets that are no longer in use and uneven patches of plaster require the larger filling knife.

7) Hamilton Perfection Dusting Brush

Dust brushes are perfect for sweeping away dust that accumulates on the surface after sanding. Common uses for a painters dust brush 1) Removal of dust after sanding 2) Wiping down skirting boards, architrave, window ledges and tops of door frames.) Having a dust brush in your painter’s tool kit saves time by not having to drag out the hoover every time you sand.

Have a painting job? Check out: “How To Paint A Room Like A Professional” 

8) Clauss Auto Loading Stanley Knife

One tool that I use consistently for a variety of jobs throughout the day. You can purchase folding versions of stanley knife’s and while they serve the same purpose. I find that the non folding version provides better grip and leverage allowing for a more fluid cutting action. Jobs I use an auto loading stanley knife for include. 1) Cutting the tops of caulking and silicone tubes, 2)Removing rawl plugs from walls and plasterboard, 3) Trimming carpet 4) Scraping dried paint of roller frames


Top 16 Essential Painting Tools

This blog post on must have painting tools for professionals and DIY Enthusiasts contains affiliate links. I may earn a small commission when those links are clicked on and a product is purchased. There is no additional costs to you.

The compensation received will NEVER influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. The views and opinions expressed on this blog are purely mine. If I claim or appear to be an expert on a certain topic, product or service area. I will only endorse products or services that I believe (based on my expertise), are worthy of such endorsement.

9) DeWalt 1800W Heat Gun with 240V Dual Air Flow

Heat guns with an adjustable thermostat serve two purposes. 1) They can strip paint of any surface fast and don’t leave a sticky residue unlike harmful chemical paint strippers 2) Adjust the temperature and they can also be used to dry patches of filler, allowing you to continue painting.

The Dewalt Heat Gun also comes with a handy feature allowing you to stand the gun on its base keeping the hot metal elements away from flammable materials.

10) Mini Paint Scuttle 5 Litre Capacity

There are plenty of situations when painting a room that a mini paint scuttle will come in handy. Painting directly from the tin is never a good idea for several reasons 1) Dirt and dust can be picked up on the brush and contaminate the paint. 2) Accidents can happen, knocking over 2.5 litres of an oil based paint would be a disaster. 3) 5 litre rectangular paint scuttles allow both brush and mini roller to be used, circular paint scuttles do not.

For ease of use, transfer a small amount of paint into the mini scuttle. Try and avoid tipping any unused paint back into the tin.

11) Microfibre Mini Rollers 4 Inch and Frame

I’ll admit that when purchasing painting tools I tend to go for quality brands rather than cheaper alternatives. In most cases the quality and performance justifies the cost. Unfortunately I can’t say the same for mini rollers sleeves, I honestly prefer the cheaper microfibre 4 inch sleeves.

They are super versatile, can be used with most paints, are inexpensive and deliver excellent results. Plus, if I accidently forgot to wash one, it’s not end of the world. Most suppliers sell them in packs of 5 or 10 and include a mini roller frame. I use them for back rolling after cutting in and for painting large surfaces, (doors, shelves, deep skirtings).

12) Purdy Painters Multi Tool

When you need robust reliable tool for a combination of jobs, purdy multi tools are perfect for the task. While I don’t fully utilise every feature on the tool. I do use the multi tool for, 1) Removing old caulk and silicone 2) Opening paint tins 3) Chiseling 4) Scraping 5) Removing nails and rawl plugs.


13) Paint Mixing Paddle

There are several reasons you will need a paint mixer. Coloured paints, unless mixed and applied on the same day will need mixed again before application. If you are mist coating fresh plaster with contract matt emulsion, you will need to dilute the paint with water. Attempting to mix paint by hand is a long tiring process especially if your mixing a large amount. Paint paddle’s are inexpensive, attach directly onto a cordless drill and mix paint effortlessly.

14) Swivel Pole Sander 

Preparation is the key to painting a room like a professional, sanding the walls and ceiling are major part of the preparation process. I use a swivel pole sander attached to a purdy extension pole in combination with a hand sander to reach all areas of a room. You might be surprised to know that even freshly plastered walls and ceilings will still require sanding prior to the finishing coats of paint.

In most cases 120 grade sandpaper is adequate to get the job done. Simply trim as required and loosen the securing clamps to fit the sandpaper.

15) Werner Fibreglass Swingback Stepladder-6 Tread

I think it’s safe to say that most households own a set of step ladders. If you don’t you will need a set for cutting in around ceilings, mouldings and architrave. I highly recommend Werner’s Fibreglass 6 Run Step Ladders, they are bulletproof. Manufactured from fibreglass, so they will not rust, you can store them outside or if your a professional painter on top of your van.

16) Premium Coated Cotton Dust Sheet 12 x 9ft

Last but not least in my Top 16 essential painting tools are dust sheets, also referred to as drop cloths. There are several types of dust sheets available, (basic twill dust sheet, polythene, polythene-backed and heavy duty cotton twill). All of them will protect your furniture and flooring from paint spray and paint spills, except the basic cotton twill.

For painting and decorating purposes you will need a heavy duty tight woven drop cloth or coated cotton dust sheet. Both will STOP dust and paint from penetrating the surfaces below. Polythene-backed dust sheets are adequate for covering furniture but will slip on tile and laminate flooring. Dust sheets come in a variety of sizes, (12 x 12, 12 x 9, 9 x 9, 24 x 3), for an average sized room, several 12 x 9 dust sheets would be sufficient to cover both furniture and floor.

Another option which I personally use for kitchen painting is ProDec Super Cling Dust Sheet. The advantage to using a cling film dust sheet is its lightweight and naturally clings to all flat surfaces without having to use excessive amounts of masking tape. Super cling film dust sheet comes in a large roll which can be trimmed to the required size.

Top 16 Essential Painting Tools

I hope that you found the information in my Top 16 Essential Painting Tools helpful. You might also be interested in two earlier articles I wrote on How To Paint Matt Over Silk Emulsion and How To Paint Over Flaking Or Peeling Paint.

Clear Cut Painting is a professional decorating firm based in Northern Ireland, UK. All Painting equipment recommended in this article are used on a daily basis, which greatly assists myself in delivering professional interior painting finishes.

If you have ever wondered how to paint a door (interior or exterior) without leaving brush marks? then continue reading. There are various steps in achieving a professional brushless finish. Painting a door without brush marks is a relatively simple process as long as you follow the advice below.

Painting a Door Without Removing It

Should I remove the door before painting? there is a simple answer to the question. Are you confident that you can rehang the door after you have finished painting. Do you have the available space and equipment (Saw Horses) to rest the door onto? If the answer is NO, then leave the door where it is, you can achieve a professional finish without removing the door.

I generally do not remove doors before painting, unless 1) The door needs repaired 2) The door is being stripped, all existing paint removed using a Heat Gun.

What you will need though, when painting a hung door is a Door Wedge to stop the door from swinging back and forth. Also ensure that you remove the door hardware (door handles), if your a novice painter, mask off the hinges with Scotchblue Masking Tape.

How To Paint a New Door

All wooden doors (bare wood) will need to be primed before any further coats of paint can be applied. This is an essential step that must not be skipped. Primer paint allows the tops coats of paint to adhere to the surface better. Primer is designed to seal new wood preventing the underlying wood from prematurely absorbing the solvents in the finishing paint. Priming bare wood also stops knots from bleeding through your new paint work.

On new wooden doors I use Zinsser Bullseye 123 Primer Sealer. Apply two coats, dilute the first coat of primer with water at a ratio of 10:1. This will allow the primer to soak thoroughly into the grain, sealing the wood. Before applying the second coat of primer, sand the door using a Foam Sanding Block 120 Grade.

Brush away all dust and prime the door again with the final coat, (do not dilute). Your door should be smooth to the touch, ready for the next coat of paint which is your undercoat.

Zinnser Bullseye 123 Water Based Primer can be applied with a brush, roller or sprayed. I use both a brush and mini roller for painting doors, regardless of whether I’m using a, (primer, undercoat or finishing coats). Using a brush and roller combination is fast and provides a superior finish, free from brush marks. I’ll explain more on the technique involved in painting a door without brush marks a little later.

Best Tools For Painting a Door

You really don’t need many tools to achieve a great finish on doors. Below is small list of tools that I use daily at Clear Cut Painting.

Painting A Door Without Brush Marks

Part of the process to avoiding unsightly brush marks is painting your door in the correct order ensuring even paint distribution. Most doors either have 2, 4 or 6 panel configurations, the process I’m going to explain applies to all variations.

You will notice in the diagram below arrows pointing to sections on the door, both brush and roller are used depending on the portion of the door being painted.

1) The first area to paint is the door jamb (door jambs are the sides of the door frame that run vertically). Use your brush to paint approximately a 1 inch section top and bottom, then roll the remainder of the edge with your mini roller.

2) Next are the beveled edges surrounding each panel, use your Purdy Brush to paint this area ensuring that you paint with the grain. Avoid using to much paint as it will pool in each corner of the lower bevel.

3) Now that all the beveled edges are painted, use your mini roller to paint the face of the panels, remember always working with the grain.

4) Lastly are the panels that create the frame of the door, use just the mini roller to finish applying the paint. Use long, fluid strokes with an even amount of pressure to create a spray like finish.

Always thoroughly sand the the door after applying each coat of paint. Sanding helps to key the surface helping the next layer of painting stick to the surface. Sanding between coats will ensure a spray like finish. Use a Painters Dusting Brush in combination with a damp cloth to remove all dust before painting.

How many coats of paint will a new door require? Painting a new wooden door like a pro will require 4 – 6 coats of paint,  (primer, undercoat, top coats). Previously painted doors will require 3 – 4 coats of paint (undercoat, topcoats), but may still require priming depending on the circumstances.

Painting a Door Tips and Tricks

If there was just one additional tip to painting doors without brush marks. I would highly recommend using a product called Owatrol Floetrol Paint Additive. It’s essentially a paint conditioner that improves the flow of paint, helping to keep a wet edge. Floetrol is designed to be used with water based paint products for the purpose of eliminating brush and roller marks.

Paint conditioners give both professional painters and novices extending working time. Most paints are self leveling to a degree, which can be improved with, good brushes, the right choice of roller cover, good technique and paint additives to help with paint flow, (laying off).

Laying off: the redistribute of paint in a more uniform fashion. This technique can be used with both brush and roller, personally from experience, I find that when painting a door without brush marks. Use your brush to access the areas a mini roller cannot and finish with a Ultra Smooth Mini Roller Nap in combination with a paint conditioner.

This blog is a personal blog written and edited by me (Andrew Firth). For questions about this blog, please contact andrew@clearcutpainting.co.uk. Some posts contain amazon affiliate links. I may earn a small commission when those links are clicked on and a product is purchased.
There is no additional costs to you. The compensation received will NEVER influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. The views and opinions expressed on this blog are purely mine.