Paints and Finishes, Part II: Painting Interior Rooms

MOTHER's Handbook part II of the paints and finishes series, painting interior rooms. Includes tips and information on painting the interior of your home.

| May/June 1988

  • 111-046-01

    ILLUSTRATION: JOAN LANDIS
  • Diagram 1 interior painting
    Diagram 1: A good paint roller cover.
    KAY HOLMES STAFFORD
  • Diagram 5 interior painting
    Diagram 5: Removing baseboard molding.
    KAY HOLMES STAFFORD
  • Diagram 4 interior painting
    Diagram 4: Patching with vinyl spackle.
    KAY HOLMES STAFFORD
  • Diagram 2 interior painting
    Diagram 2: A simple working platform.
    KAY HOLMES STAFFORD
  • Diagram 3 interior painting
    Diagram 3: Using a bucket and a roller screen.
    KAY HOLMES STAFFORD
  • Diagram 7 interior painting
    Diagram 7: Strip-rolling with an extension pole.
    KAY HOLMES STAFFORD
  • Diagram 10 interior painting
    Diagram 10: Flush door painting sequence.
    KAY HOLMES STAFFORD
  • Diagram 9 interior painting
    Diagram 9: Double hung.
    KAY HOLMES STAFFORD
  • Diagram 6 interior painting
    Diagram 6: Cutting in with a brush.
    KAY HOLMES STAFFORD
  • Diagram 8 interior painting
    Diagram 8: Painting walls with a roller.
    KAY HOLMES STAFFORD
  • 111-045-01tab.jpg
    This chart indicates the range of interior finishes and their applications. The listings, from left to right, show increasing levels of hardness and degrees of light reflection. In general, flat finishes are soft and forgiving of surface irregularities; the gloss enamels highlight imperfections, but resist marring fingerprint marks and wear from repeated cleaning. As a rule, the higher a paint's sheen level, the greater its durability. Though washable flat wall paints are sometimes labeled enamels, that term is best applied to paints—usually gloss or semigloss—with enough resins to handle frequent scrubbing.
    MOTHER EARTH NEWS STAFF
  • Diagram 11 interior painting
    Diagram 11: Panel door painting sequence.
    KAY HOLMES STAFFORD
  • 111-049-03
    Diagram 12: The nuts and bolts of color.
    KAY HOLMES STAFFORD

  • 111-046-01
  • Diagram 1 interior painting
  • Diagram 5 interior painting
  • Diagram 4 interior painting
  • Diagram 2 interior painting
  • Diagram 3 interior painting
  • Diagram 7 interior painting
  • Diagram 10 interior painting
  • Diagram 9 interior painting
  • Diagram 6 interior painting
  • Diagram 8 interior painting
  • 111-045-01tab.jpg
  • Diagram 11 interior painting
  • 111-049-03

MOTHER's Handbook: Making sense of the homeowner's most misunderstood cover-up, painting interior rooms in your home. (See the home interior painting diagrams and charts in the image gallery.)

Paints and Finishes, Part II: Painting Interior Rooms

Your house needs painting, and a question comes to mind: What's the difference between the inside surfaces and the outside? A comic might say six inches, but the joke is all too often on the do-it-yourself painter. There are important distinctions between interior and exterior painting, and Part I of this handbook, which ran in our March/April 1988 issue, starts with the rough work. It covers the basics of exterior painting—recognizing paint failure, handling the all-important preparation work, choosing the right tools and paints and using those materials correctly.

What if you intend to paint just an inside room or two? It still wouldn't hurt to brush up on the finer points of outside painting, because both techniques share similarities. Moreover, the second half of the article, which follows, will be easier to understand, since it's been organized to parallel the first.

Painting Interior Rooms: Choice or Challenge?

Unlike the paint on the outside of your house, that on the inside won't always show signs of wear. Rather, the problems which do appear often result from improper ventilation, shoddy preparation, a building deficiency or simply the wrong choice of paint.



On the other hand, you may want to cover an old finish with something new just to make a change ... or to unite a variety of construction materials with a single color. If either of these is your aim, you're one step ahead but you're still not entirely in the clear.

Let's start by looking at some of the signs that indicate a condition that'll require some attention before any new paint is applied:






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