power roller, or elbow grease?


Old 11-12-02, 12:28 PM
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power roller, or elbow grease?

Hello all,

I'm getting ramped up to paint the inside of my house. It was built in 1993 and the original off-white paint is showing the age. I'm not planning on doing anything major like textures or anything - I wouldn't know what to do to begin with, so I pretty much plan on recoating with a similar color.

I've never taken on a painting project of this scale, I've only had to recoat the occassional wall here or there. Are the power rollers I've seen on TV as great as they claim in the ads? Or should I just get an old fashioned roller, a ladder, and get to it?

And if I'm using a similar paint, will more than one coat be required?

Thanks for your tips and advice,
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Old 11-12-02, 04:07 PM
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Painting tips

Interior painting tips

Painting walls is a chore, and one that you will want to get right the first time around. Failure to paint the wall properly will cause the colors bleeding, running and you will have to add many coats of paint to cover these mistakes.

Place drop cloths on the area around where you are painting. Some paints say they wash up with soap and water, and the paint still is hard to remove.

Purchase paint brushes for oil paints or latex, depending on which paint you are using. Same thing goes for the paint roller. It should have a medium nap. If preferred, you can use a paint sprayer and can purchase one at your local hardware center or home improvement center.

You can paint oil based paints over latex, but you can't paint latex based paints over oil based paints without first prepping the walls. You can buy an etching solution or use a primer to seal in the oil paint. After you have primed the wall, you can begin painting.

First you will want to start with your ceilings. Feel free to paint over the edges because when you paint the walls, you'll cut your corners in.

Next is your wood work. Sand and prime before you paint. Use a satin paint on your trim and a flat finish paint on your walls. Trim being doors, moulding etc.

Now that you have finished the ceiling, you can paint the walls. Cut in first with a paint brush. You do this by painting the corners and areas that the paint roller will not reach.

Roll out two coats on your walls, being sure you let the first coat dry thoroughly first. Be sure to have a window or fan for proper ventilation. If it's cold outside, make sure the heat is on in your home to help dry the paint.

Be sure to use a quality paint. If you have children, you will want to make sure the paint can be washed. Also make sure the paint has a warranty for at least 5 years or longer.

After painting, be sure to clean the brushes, roller and roller pans for your next project.

Bennett, Linda. Interior painting tips. Retrieved 12 November 2002. http://nc.essortment.com/interiorpaintin_rxga.htm

There are many websites on the internet that offer advice on interior painting. Many of the major paint manufacturers have helpful websites. Purchasing a high quality paint will tend to product better results. Follow paint manufacturer's instructions for cleaning and preparing surfaces for painting. I have been painting for over 40 years, and have always used brushes and old-fashioned roller.

Painting Interiors
Painting your home's interior can perform wonders! You can change it from drab to dynamic, from shabby to sophisticated, and from faded to fresh! The proper materials and a few basic painting tips are all you need to transform one room or an entire home. Doing your own painting can save you money, and if you plan carefully and follow these instructions, you will achieve professional results.

Before You Begin
The first step in any redecorating project is to select an overall color scheme. That means taking all aspects of your decorating plan into consideration -- furnishings, carpeting and wall color. Color can create a mood, accentuate architectural assets and hide flaws. Be sure to consider the items listed below when selecting decorating colors:

What type of mood you want to create.
What furniture, artwork, architectural features, or other aspects of the room you want to emphasize
Any awkward physical characteristics of the room you would like to overcome.
The color you decide to paint your walls should be an integral part of your decorating decisions. Once you have decided on the wall color, you can select a specific paint shade using samples of all materials to be included in the room. Remember, color may appear differently depending on how large the painted area is, whether a glossy or flat finish is used, what other colors are nearby and the type of lighting used in the room.
Painting Materials
Before beginning any new paint project, assemble all of the items you will need to complete it. Here's a list:

Paint in a sufficient quantity to do the entire job
Appropriate applicators (brushes, rollers, etc.)
Dropcloths old sheets are fine
Screwdriver to remove wall hooks, door knobs and switchplates
Plastic automotive tape to edge window panes and cover other areas you don t want painted. (Used for painting stripes on cars, it is available at auto supply and paint stores.)
Hand cream to rub on your hand and arms before painting to make paint removal easier.
Turpentine or paint thinner when using oil-based paint
Selecting a Paint
Paint comes in a wide variety of brands and types. These brief descriptions will help you decide which type best suits your needs:

Latex paints These are water-thinned and apply easily with a brush or roller. Clean-up with soap and water is a distinct advantage. Latex paints are available in most gloss ranges and will do a good job in most interior areas. They are not flammable and have a very mild odor.

Alkyd (oil) paints These are solvent-thinned paints. They apply well with a brush or roller but need turpentine or mineral spirits for clean-up. Sometimes preferred for areas where constant cleaning is necessary, like kitchens and bathroom shower areas. Very high gloss enamels are usually solvent-thinned. Odor is stronger during application than with latex paints, but disappears after a few days.

Enamels Enamels are generally smoother and dry to a harder surface than other interior paints. They are available in high or low gloss and can be either latex or alkyd.

Gloss The gloss is the luster or shininess of a dry paint. Paints are usually classified as flat, eggshell, semi-gloss or high gloss. A wide variety of gloss ranges is available.

Special paints and coatings These are available for most surfaces. Wood floors, concrete or masonry and metal surfaces require specific products. Consult your paint retailer and read the paint can label carefully for recommendations.

Since masonry usually contains alkali, the paint used to cover it should be alkali-resistant. Special paints are generally recommended.

Over iron or steel, a rust-inhibitive primer is usually desirable. Any type of enamel or paint may be used over the primer as a topcoat depending on the use of the area to be painted.

Selecting Applicators
It'salways wise to choose good quality paint applicators. They produce more satisfactory results and a better looking job. Here is a list of the various applicators:

Natural bristle brushes recommended for thin-bodied coatings such as varnish, enamel and shellac. They should not be used with water-thinned (latex) paints. They wear down faster than synthetic brushes.

Polyester bristle brushes especially suited for use in water-thinned coatings because of their stiffness. However, on rough surfaces they wear down faster than nylon brushes.

Nylon bristle brushes similar to polyester, but more abrasion resistant. They lose some of their stiffness after long exposure to latex paint on hot days. The type of bristling material should be stamped on the handle of the brush. Any brush you choose should be flagged (split tips). This enable sit to retain more paint and spread it more uniformly.

Rollers when you want to paint a large area in a short time. They are available in a variety of widths. Like brushes, some are better for one type of paint than another. A power paint roller that thumps paint out of the can and through the paint roller is also available and is useful for large jobs.

Pad applicators apply paint smoothly and fast, but require some skill. They come in various widths and are used with a roller tray.

Spray applicators mechanical spraying equipment can be purchased or rented. These can be either airless (hydraulic) or conventional air-atomized spray types. They are good for large jobs or hard-to-paint areas like shutters and louvered doors. Use spray applicators safely by following manufacturers directions. Open doors and windows and wear an appropriate paint spray respirator.

Spray cans (aerosols) clear coatings, paints and enamels are available in convenient spray containers. They are ideal for painting wicker furniture or other small difficult-to-paint projects. Open doors and windows to improve ventilation.

Preparing the Surface
Proper surface preparation is the key to a professional-looking and long-lasting paint job. Follow these steps for preparing your surfaces:

Examine plaster walls for cracks and mars.
Fix small hairline cracks with spackling material; fill larger cracks with special matching plaster. Sand lightly when dry for a smooth surface.
Clean the surface to remove dirt, oil, grease, rust and flaking paint.
Remove all hardware from doors and windows and loosen lighting fixtures or cover these areas with masking tape and scraps of paper or cloth.
Bare or new surfaces and surfaces with areas where the paint has deteriorated will require a prime coat. If the old coating is intact and free of rust and peeling or blistering paint, it can serve as the prime coat after a light sanding. The topcoat you have chosen will usually name the proper primer to accompany it on the paint can'slabel. Sometimes the topcoat itself is recommended as a primer consult the can label.

Final Preparations
Read all label instructions on the can of paint thoroughly and follow all suggestions especially for stirring.

Rub protective cream into your hands and arms it will be easier to remove all paint from your skin by washing with warm soap and water when the job is done.

Cover floor and furniture with dropcloths or sheets. Clean up paint splatters as you go along. They re much easier to remove when they are wet.

If you are using solvents or solvent-thinned paints be sure all pilot lights and fires are out before you begin. When using any type of paint or coating, be sure there is plenty of fresh air and ventilation in your working area.

To prevent one lap from drying before you paint the next lap, work across the width of the ceiling rather than the length, painting about two-foot wide, slightly overlapping strips.

If you are using a ladder to reach the ceiling (rather than using a long-handled roller), be careful not to reach too far or risk falling off the ladder.

When you move the ladder, remove paint, brushes, or rollers to avoid spilling.

Begin at the upper left-hand corner if you are right-handed, and at the upper right-hand corner if you are left-handed; work down toward the floor.

When using a roller, paint the outside edges with a brush first for a neater job.


Use a round, one-inch brush for window sashes and a two to three-inch brush for the remainder of the trimwork throughout your house.
Before painting floor molding, put tape along the floor, to protect it from paint.

Use tape along the edges of the glass, and then paint the various window parts in this order: mullions, horizontal sashes; vertical sashes; vertical frames; horizontal frames; sill; and apron.

When you ve finished painting, follow paint can label directions for clean-up and storage.

Painting Interiors. Paintinfo.org Copyright 2000-2002 National Paint & Coatings Association. Retrieved 12 November 2002. http://www.paintinfo.org/brochures/interiors.htm
Old 11-15-02, 12:24 PM
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I bought a Wagoner Power Roller a couple of weeks ago to paint my rooms with cathedral ceilings (25 feet). The main reason that I got it is that I am not a big fan of heights and I didn't want to have to lug a bucket or a pan with a roller up and down the ladder. I also wasn't willing to go down the ladder everytime I needed to reload the roller.

The Power Roller worked well for the tall walls. I could just hang it over my should and use both hands to climb the ladder The roller worked well for this, however, for "regular" walls (I did use the roller on one normal--8 foot high wall), I don't think that it is worth the extra hassle. I could work just as fast with a high quality traditional roller and a 5 gallon bucket with a grid/grate. Plus the cleanup is much easier with a good old fashioned roller.

So, if you have to go up high and you don't particularly like being up high then I recomend the power roller. If you are just painting a house with normal ceiling, then I would go with a good roller
Old 11-15-02, 04:15 PM
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Power roller or elbow grease

Thank you, MotoBill. I have heard similar comments from others. Years ago someone told me they bought a power roller and got so frustrated that they threw it out. For tall walls and ceilings that I could not reach, I always used an extension pole and regular roller. I am sure that they power roller manufacturers would not want to hear such comments. There is also the issue of having to clean and maintain the power roller. One can, of course, simply toss the regular roller, stick the pan in a plastic bag so one does not have to wash it, and save time and energy.
Old 03-31-03, 06:58 PM
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I know this topic is old, but want to share my thoughts. I think the RIGHT power roller is very effective and useful regardless of the wall height. I have a Wagner Power Roller Plus (I think model 929) that I've used for all sorts of paint jobs.

While it will be most effective in situations where one doesn't want to go up/down a ladder, it reduces the strain of painting that one will have from continuous bending to load paint from a paint tray. I also feel that I get a better more even paint job because I'm able to get a better flow of paint than I would with a pan and traditional roller.

Just my 2 cents.
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