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Painting, decorating and home improvement tips blog

Water-based or Oil-based: Always read the label

Posted by admin
August 15th, 2011

Water-based or Oil-based paint? Always read the label

When you buy paint you should always read the label printed on the tin, not only to see what the manufactures say you should do, but also to find out the type of paint you are using.

Sounds like a silly question, but if you are using a gloss or satinwood finish, is it water-based (or acrylic) or is it an oil-based product?

By knowing weather it is water-based or oil-based it will determine a few things, such as drying times, the application method you may want to use, and what you need to use to clean your brushes with, either water or brush cleaner/white spirit.

Things to look out for;
The symbols on the tin. It should have a symbol saying “clean brushes with water” or “clean brushes with brush cleaner” for oil based paints.
The VOC level will be low to medium on water-based paint and high on oil based.

Why do you need to know this information?

Knowing if the paint your using is oil or water based could help you make a decision about what type of paint to buy, if you prefer oil-based paints as you find them easier to work with than water-based paint, or do you prefer water-based as it dries quicker? As you need to get a job done before it rains, or the kids come home!

It also good to know if you can simply wash your brushes in water or if you have to wash then in brush cleaner such as white spirit. You don’t want to be washing them out in the wrong thing, or storing them incorrectly as this will ruin your brush.

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Getting a professional finish – a quick guide to gloss work

Posted by admin
June 1st, 2011

Graphic of a paintbrush dripping paint

Getting a professional finish – a quick guide to gloss work

When you are painting gloss paintwork many people find they end up with brush marks in the final dried paintwork. This could be due to a couple of reasons.

I have been asked, how come I don’t get lots of brush marks, runs or dirt in my gloss work.

Preparation, Brushes and Paint

Firstly, your preparation is vital and shouldn’t be overlooked. You may find my post on Decoration and Preparation of interest.

Also you need to use a good quality brush, many cheaper brushes can be too wiry and stiff which can cause brush marks in the wet gloss.

Another thing to consider is to use a good quality gloss paint; many top brands will flow well as you apply the gloss to the woodwork eliminating brush strokes as it dries. Cheaper brands or solid non-drip type gloss can be a bit thick to apply and may not flow that well.

Applying the Gloss Paint

The other thing you need to consider is how you apply the gloss, you need to put enough on but not so much the gloss runs. This comes with experience and knowing the products you are using.

Once you have applied the gloss, use the brush to go over the area you have just painted with long strokes with an unloaded brush, this will help spread the gloss more evenly. Once you have done this, go over the area again with the unloaded brush with even lighter strokes until you are barely toughing the paint.

If you follow these basic steps your gloss work should look more like a professional has done it.

Be aware that if you are painting gloss paint and it is in a damp atmosphere, such as outside, you may get a ‘bloom’ (a dullness) over it by the next day and the sheen will be gone, and you will have to re-paint it. To avoid this, don’t paint gloss in a damp atmosphere of too early or too late in the year when the damp can affect your paint.

Please note: This post refers to oil based gloss paint and not water based gloss paint, although the principles are the same, drying times and how it acts differ.

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What can you do with your old paint?

Posted by admin
October 2nd, 2009

Old paint can with runs down the outsideAs we now live in an environmental conscious society it is getting harder and harder to dispose of rubbish, including items such as paint and other hazardous waste.

So what can you do with your old paint, I bet you either put old tins of paint in your garage or shed and when you comes to use them again they have either gone off as the frost has got to them or they have a skin over the top an inch thick!

The next time you do some decorating instead of putting the left over paint in the garage or shed or taking to the local tip why not put it to good use.
Think of people who can use it, such people as local clubs, community projects, friends, relative or neighbours or even your local allotment society.
All these people (and more) I’m sure would receive your left over paint gratefully and be able to make good use of it.

Dulux sponsor an initiative called “Community RePaint” a project that provides an outlet for unwanted old paint in your local community.
Search online for “Community RePaint” for more information.

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