Why does the wall look like this?


Old 04-14-03, 09:35 AM
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Question Why does the wall look like this?

I recently painted 2 of the 4 walls in my living room a light brown color ("hot chocolate"). I used an eggshell latex paint (American Traditions). I painted two coats of this color over an existing layer of white latex (eggshell finish).

When it dried I was very disappointed with the appearance. I can best describe the problem as visible "roller lines" or streaks (especially when viewed from the side and with certain lighting).

It almost looks like I painted a second coat in certain spots with a roller using a paint with a different finish (i.e. as if I had put a base coat of flat and then a 2nd, more haphazard, coat using eggshell). Note that it also looked like this BEFORE I put on the second coat.

Any ideas why this happened? I've only ever painted a couple of rooms and I'm sure my roller techinique is not great but this seems like something that shouldn't happen. I am seriously thinking of repainting the whole thing (ugh) but with a flat finish paint. I'm just hesitant to use flat paint in my living room (I have 2 kids).

P.S.- Am I in danger of putting two many layers of paint on the wall if I repaint?
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Old 04-14-03, 11:01 AM
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how dark is "hot chocolate"?

How dark is hot chocolate? The reason I ask is because some paints, especially deep reds and greens, are deep tint paints and are hard for a diyer to get looking good. The problem has little to do with the sheen. You would have had the same results with a flat paint. Read thru the old posts for topics concerning red paints.

With paint, you get what you pay for. You also get what you pay for in tools. This means if you use inexpensive paint (you did) and inexpensive tools (roller sleeves and brushes), you make it tougher to do a good job.

Buy a good roller sleeve and brush (the best you can find for latex paints).
Keep a wet edge and do not over brush nor over roll.
You will need to do at leat one more coat.
Old 04-14-03, 12:04 PM
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Thanks for your reply. A few comments/clarifications-

-Although the paint was relatively inexpensive, I didn't realize it was considered "cheap." I bought it (at Lowes) because American Tradition (Valspar) had been one of the top paints recommended by Consumer Reports the past 2 years. What paint would you recommend in the future?

-Also, I thought I bought a pretty good roller pad. Again, it was the most expensive one at Lowes (Purdy, 1/2" nap)

-The color is a lighter brown. Sort of like coffee with a lot of milk in it.

-When you say a "wet edge," do you mean on the roller?

BTW- I neglected to comment on how good this website is- very helpful!
Old 04-14-03, 01:23 PM
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light brown should not be a problem...


I used to subscribe to CR years ago. I stopped because I had too many disappointments concerning their "best buys" as well as their subjective comments. They once criticized a car for riding like a sports car - it was a sports car. But I digress...

Purdy is a good brand so we can eliminate that.
A light brown is not a deep tint so that shouldn't be a problem.

By keeping a wet edge I mean you need to move fast enough so that where you blend the previous roller/brush area with the new one, it hasn't begun to dry. Example - it is common to cut in all the trim on a wall (or the room) then roll the walls. But by the time you finish the trim, the first part is already starting to dry.
Or if you follow the diy shows technique using big "W" strokes, some of what you already painted is drying before you can get good coverage.

My favorite paint is Sherwin-Williams super paint. Classic 99 is good if you want to save a couple bucks. Benjamin Moore has a good reputation as well as Pratt & Lambert.
Old 04-14-03, 07:08 PM
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Often there is too much pressure place on the roller in an attempt stretch the paint. This will tend to cause thin application with heavier edges, resulting in what you describe.

The Valspar American Tradition is what I have used all through my house. I have repainted the entire interior in the past two years. I have been happy with the performance of the paint and would recommend it to anyone. Of course, most manufacturers' front line products are good.

I have found that proper preparation and application technique are almost more important than the material used. In other words, good paint cannot save poor preparation or application.

When you roll, start by working on a 3 x 3 foot area to see how that goes and work out from there. That can give you a feel for how much to apply. The can label that says 400 square feet means just that.

Hope this helps.
Old 04-15-03, 09:04 PM
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put another coat on but add some water to the paint maybe 2 or 3 cups of water to a gallon get it sort of watery so that you dont feel like your pulling and pushing the paint along as you roll .try that you will see it will roll and brush out easier and as mentioned before about a wet edge, this will slow the dry time allowing the lap marks to blend and flow together better.a wet edge means that you want the last roll mark to be as wet as the new so that they dry together at the same time,if not you will see the roll marks as being shiny and dull.a tip or two for ya when you paint a room,cut in one wall then roll it and roll from ceiling to floor with each dip of the roller.and dont take a dip and roll it out for 3 feet or more that might be the problem,rolling a dip out to far making the the coat thin and its drying to fast.a dip should be good for a roller width and a half on normal 7 or 8 foot ceilings.also if you feel your not into adding water to paint like your taking away from its properties,look into Floetrol at your local paint store it slows the drying time and helps it flow together better.the drying and flowing together of your paint is the problem.hope this helps.

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