Eight Steps to Perfect Trim Painting

Properly painted trim adds increased dimension to a room and gives it a polished finish. Here are eight tips for maximizing the effect of trim on a room.  

Clean the trim as thoroughly as possible. Vacuum away spider webs and accumulated dirt and debris. Then, wipe everything down with a soapy rag followed by a clean, wet rag. Allow it to fully dry for 2 to 4 hours before continuing.

Use a de-glossing medium or liquid sander to remove any glossy finish on the trim, or any grease that has built up. This will help the new paint to adhere better and reduce future peeling.

Repair any nicks or holes that have shown up on the trim over the years. New paint can make these dents and imperfections stand out like a sore thumb. Caulk or painter’s putty are good choices to fill these blemishes. Smooth them out as good as possible for the best finish.

Prime the trim if it is newly installed or raw (never been treated before applying the paint. This is especially important when combining sections of painted and unpainted trim.

Protect the areas around where you will be painting to prevent them from being accidentally splattered with dripped paint.

Apply painter’s tape to the walls, floors and window or door jambs so you can paint with confidence and have the straight lines that will make your paint job “pop.”

Choose the best finishing brush you can afford.

Choose the best quality primer and finishing paint you can afford.

As you can see, these eight tips take little time and effort, but you will be amazed by the results. You will be able to finish the job in less time and with fewer headaches.

by Dave Donovan

Dave Donovan is a freelance copywriter living in Atco, N.J. An electrician for 15 years, an injury forced him to pursue his true passion - writing.

Pam Estabrooke, district manager of ProTect Painters, contributed to this article.