Our guide to painting the trim in your Toronto home

Our guide to painting the trim in your Toronto home

Here is the official CAM Painters guide to trim painting!  Do you want your trim looking silky smooth and nice?  Read on…

Determine if you need to prime your trim

There are a couple of situations where a primer is recommended.  

  • First, if you’re painting over bare wood, a primer seals the wood and provides a sandable surface before painting.
  • If you’re painting over varnished wood, a primer will help the paint adhere to the surface.
  • If you’re painting over an oil paint, a primer will help with adhesion.  To test if your trim is currently painted in oil, put some acetone (nail polish remover) on a rag and rub it on the surface.  If the paint comes off on the rag you have latex paint, if not, you likely have oil paint.

Lightly sand your trim

Your existing trim likely has a somewhat glossy finish, so it’s a good practice to lightly sand your trim.  The purpose of this is twofold:

  • It smooths out any rough spots, drips, ridges that are currently in the trim, so that the surface is nice and smooth for all subsequent steps.
  • It de-glosses the surface, so that primer and/or paint can penetrate deeper and bond better with the surface.

trim, Toronto house paintersPrime your trim – if necessary

If you have determined that you need to prime (refer to first step) here is the procedure:

  • We recommend a primer with good adhesion, our favorite is Multi-Purpose Water-Based Acrylic-Alkyd Primer from Sherwin Williams
  • Apply it with brush or wizz roller (for flat doors or other wide, flat areas)
  • Apply it in thin coats – the goal is giving the finish coat something to grab into, not coverage
  • Allow enough cure time before topcoating (usually an hour or two)

Fill any holes and gaps

After priming, it’s an ideal time to inspect the surface for any nail holes or gaps.  These can easily be caulked, just be sure to smooth out the caulking after so that there are no lumps in the surface.

Give the primer a very light sandtrim, Toronto house painter, interior painting

Using 200 or higher grit sandpaper give the primer a light sand.  Sometimes bare wood fibers can be raised after its primed, so smooth out these areas with your sandpaper.  Also, inspect and make sure there are no rough areas that were missed on the first sanding.  You just want to smooth out the surface, not penetrate down to the bare wood, so just use a light touch.

Paint your trim

Our favorite paints for trim are Sherwin Williams ProClassic or Benjamin Moore Advance.  These dry very smooth and hard, which make them ideal.  Here are some tips to get a great finish:

Use long brush strokes – This minimizes brush marks in the final product and gives the smoothest appearance

It’s better to do two thin coats than one thick coat – If the paint is too thick it will drip and sag before it dries

Check on your work before moving on – If you look back on what you’ve done before moving on to the next section you can smooth out any drips and sags before they have a chance to dry.

Final Thoughts

We hope you have enjoyed our short little guide to DIY trim painting.  If you’d rather have CAM Painters take care of your painting project why don’t you book a quote online?  We’d be happy to transform your home with lasting beauty!

Help! There are nicotine/cooking stains in my Toronto home!

Help! There are nicotine/cooking stains in my Toronto home!

Let’s say you’re looking at buying a house, but it’s got nicotine stains on the walls and ceilings.  Or perhaps there are lot’s of cooking stains in the kitchen.  Will paint cover over this?  Will paint eliminate the smell?

Well, the answer to these questions is, it depends…

How extensive are the stains?

Nicotine smell gets everywhere!  We can eliminate the smell coming from the ceiling, walls and trim. toronto house painter, interior painting, exterior painting, wallpaper installation However, the nicotine smell can get into the carpet and other flooring, and throughout the HVAC system, so be sure to address these areas as well.  So in addition to painting, it would be wise to budget for having the ducts cleaned as well as replacing the flooring.  In extreme cases, we can put a stain sealer on the sub floor before new flooring goes in.

Cooking stains generally are easier to deal with.  Kitchens usually have hard surface flooring that is easy to clean, so cooking smells and stains can be eliminated with a thorough cleaning.

How do we deal with stains on painted surfaces?

If there is heavy staining we wash the ceilings, walls and trim with TSP, which is a bleaching agent, or Simply Green, which is a mildewcide.  After we wash the stained areas we allow them to dry and then we apply a stain-sealing primer, which we’ll talk about next.

If the stains aren’t too heavy, we’ll go directly over with a stain-sealing primer, and we’ll skip the washing step.

stains, toronto house painter, interior paintingWhich stain-sealing primer do you use?  Generally shellac-based primers work the best on stains, and we prefer Zinsser BIN.  There are oil-based and latex-based stain-sealing primers, but we have found that they don’t work as well as shellac-based.

After we have completely sealed the affected areas with primer, then we can topcoat with whatever paint we choose.

What if I choose just to paint directly over the stains?

If you choose to just paint directly over the stains with either oil or latex-based paint, the stain will bleed through the topcoat.  This basically means that the stain will show through whatever you paint it with, which is why we need to properly clean the surface and/or prime the surface to seal it.

In conclusion

Painting a house with either nicotine or cooking stains can be done, just be aware of the extra work involved and budget accordingly.

If you’d rather have CAM Painters remedy this situation for you why don’t you book a quote?  We’d be happy to transform your home with lasting beauty!

3 reasons why your painter should supply paint for your Toronto home

3 reasons why your painter should supply paint for your Toronto home

We are asked from time to time about projects where the homeowner wants to supply paint.  Sometimes they see paint on sale at the local big box store and they figure they can save a few dollars by picking up the paint themselves.  Here are 3 reasons why this approach might not save money in the end.supply paint, interior painting, toronto house painters

We ensure that the proper product is chosen for your project

In terms of paint, cheaper is not always better.  Lower grade paint can have coverage issues which results in having to do an extra coat of paint.  Thus, the savings on the paint is more than wiped out with the extra labour cost of doing another coat of paint on the surface.  We have experience with a wide variety of products and when coverage could be an issue we use the best covering product.

Lower grade paint can also have adhesion issues.  In situations where proper adhesion could be an issue we’ll use primers and paint to address those issues.  Sometimes when a homeowner wants to supply paint this might not have been taken into consideration.

toronto interior exterior painting wallpaper installation

Faux tin ceiling

In summary, there are a lot of different grades of paint and paint designed for specific applications.  To ensure a durable, good looking project that is done with the greatest level of efficiency the paint should be selected by your painting contractor, in collaboration with his or her paint store rep.

We get volume pricing on our paint

When a homeowner goes into a paint store the store manager knows that a few hundred dollars might be the maximum business that could result.  When a painting contractor goes into that same paint store, the manager knows that thousands of dollars of business could result.  Therefore, a paint contractor has greater leverage to negotiate lower pricing on paint.  We at CAM Painters pass this savings onto you.  We have preferred pricing across all Sherwin Williams stores and many Benjamin Moore stores, too.

The homeowner doesn’t have to worry about buying too much or too little paint

If the homeowner is supplying paint he or she must make sure there is enough to complete the project.  If supply paint, door painting, toronto house painterthey buy too much then they have wasted money or need to find someone who could use their leftover paint.  If they buy too little we could run out of paint in the middle of the project, which would result in a last minute run to the paint store to supply paint-which could be quite inconvenient!

We at CAM Painters are experienced in calculating paint needs, so we generally figure on the right amount.  If we run out of paint, we are the ones that get more, the homeowner doesn’t have to make a last minute trip to the paint store.

In conclusion, let us supply paint for your project!

If you’d like to have CAM Painters come and have a look at your painting project and spec the best paint system for your project why don’t you book a quote?  We’d be happy to Transform your home with lasting beauty!

How to Create Sharp Lines with Painter’s Tape!

How to Create Sharp Lines with Painter’s Tape!

The mark of a great paint job for your Toronto home is straight, sharp lines.  This can be beneficial if you are doing stripes on a wall, or just want a clean line between walls and ceiling.

Many times when we are painting, we will do our “cut” lines freehand, just following the corner between the wall and, or the groove between trim and wall.  However, there are many situations where a professional painter needs tape to ensure a clean sharp cut line.

Here are a list of best practices to get the sharpest line possible.

Select a good painter’s tape

The beige tape is not painter’s tape.  Beige tape is too sticky and usually peels paint off the surface.

This particular tape is usually green or blue and is clearly labeled “painter’s tape”.  The best is Frog Tape, but it’s one of the most costly painters tape as well.

Apply the tape correctly

Even if a high quality painter’s tape is used all is for nought if it’s not applied correctly.  If the edges aren’t properly sealed then paint will seep underneath the tape and wreck any possibility of a sharp straight line.

How do you seal the edges of the tape?

If you are using Frog Tape, you have to make sure that the edge is firmly pressed down.  Either use your finger and run it along the edge of the tape, or some people will use a plastic putty knife and run that along the edge of the tape.  Once that’s done there should be no paint seeping under the tape and you’ll get a sharp line.

If you have an ordinary painter’s tape a sharp line can still be achieved.  Once again, firmly press the tape down, either with your finger or a plastic putty knife.  However, an extra step after this is needed to ensure that the edge is properly sealed, this can take the form of:

  1. a thin bead of caulking along the edge of the tape
  2. some of the base colour along the edge of the tape
  3. a clear flat varnish along the edge of the tapesharp tape lines, painter's tape

Any of these methods will seal the edge of the tape.

Removing the tape

Either remove the tape right after you paint, or wait until the paint is fully dry.  If the paint is partially dry it can lift off the surface.

How you remove the tape is important as well:

  • go slowly
  • keep the tape at an obtuse angle, ie. close to the surface as you pull

There you have it!  Clean beautiful paint lines!

If you’d rather leave the clean, beautiful paint lines to the professionals why don’t you book a quote?  We’d be happy to Transform Your Home With Lasting Beauty!

 

When Should I Use Primer for my Toronto Home?

When Should I Use Primer for my Toronto Home?

Many paints are advertised as paint and primer in one, however there are still situations where you’ll want to use a separate primer for your Toronto home, we’ll go through them in detail here…

Any Situation Where Adhesion is a Concern

There are primers that are specifically designed to adhere to glossy surfaces.  A couple of our favorite high adhesion primers are Sherwin Williams Multi-Purpose Water-Based Acrylic-Alkyd Primer and Benjamin Moore Advance Primer

Think of it like this:

If you have a glossy floor and you put a cloth on top of it, slides easily, doesn’t it?

Put that same cloth on top of a slab of unfinished concrete, doesn’t slide so easy, right?

It’s analogous to paint:primer, toronto house painter, interior painting, exterior painting, wallpaper installation

Paint has trouble adhering to glossy surfaces, so there needs to be an intermediate step.  We accomplish this by deglossing the surface by sanding, by priming the surface with a high adhesion primer, or by doing both.  This is especially necessary when dealing with oil paint, so please read:

How do I know if the paint in my Toronto home is oil or latex?

Sealing out Stains

Many stains will bleed through latex paint, so a stain sealer is needed.  Stains include pen marks (shame on you for drawing on your walls), mildew, water stains, knots in wood, nicotine, etc.  A good shellac-based primer will seal these monstrosities out and allow you to topcoat with your choice of paint.  One of our favorite shellac-based primer/sealers is Zinsser BIN, it’s like the Buckley’s of paint, “it smells awful, but it works!”  Please use a respirator with shellac-based paintprimer, toronto house painter, interior painting, exterior painting, wallpaper installation

Big Colour Changes

There are high-hide primers that streamline the task of big colour changes.  If you are going from a mid-tone colour to an off-white using a high-hiding white primer is a great idea.  High-hiding primer is cheaper than most finish coats, and it hides better than most finish coats.

Conversely, If you are painting a deep or intense colour, getting a grey primer will make the job that much easier.  A good paint store will be able to advise you what shade of grey to use under the finish coat.

Porous Surfaces

A primer will soak into a surface better than a finish coat, so it’s advised to use a primer over new drywall and new drywall patch.  Too often finish coat won’t penetrate deep enough into a drywall patch and that area will end up peeling over time, so if we use primer we can prevent that.

Are there any situations where I can use a “paint and primer in one” product?

Sure, if the surface is

  • cleanprimer, deep colour with grey primer underneath, toronto house painter, interior painting, exterior painting, wallpaper installation
  • not too glossy
  • there’s not a big colour change
  • no stains
  • not much patching – maybe a couple of nail holes and that’s it

If this sounds like your painting project then a “paint and primer in one” product is a great choice.

 

How do I repair a cracked seam in the drywall of my Toronto home?

How do I repair a cracked seam in the drywall of my Toronto home?

Homes expand, contract, and shift with time, especially given how widely the temperature can vary season to season in Toronto.  Because of this shifting drywall seams can crack over time, so here’s what to do:

Supplies List:

  • Dropsheets
  • Flexible putty knives 1″, 6″, and 10″ or 12″
  • Mud pan
  • Drywall tape – I prefer FibaFuse
  • Drywall screws
  • Stud finder
  • Durabond 90 or 45
  • Sheetrock 45
  • Sandpaper & sanding block
  • Brush, roller, tray etc. for repainting after the crack is patched
old drywall tape removed, toronto home painters

Old drywall tape removed, drywall seam exposed

Step 1:  Remove the old drywall tape

If the tape is exposed you’ll just have to grab it and slowly pull.  As you pull the layer of plaster on top will crumble and the drywall tape should come out in one long piece.  If the tape isn’t exposed take a putty knife and dig until you expose the tape, then you’ll be able to pull it out of the wall or ceiling.  As you pull out the old drywall tape it will make a channel, which you can use to embed your new drywall tape into.  So make sure the channel is wide enough to fit the drywall tape you’re planning on using.

Step 2:  Inspect for water damage

Once the tape has been removed it’s a good idea to make sure that there’s no water damage underneath

Step 3:  Stabilize the crack with drywall screws

crack stabilized with screws, toronto home painter

the crack is stabilized with screws

Use your stud finder to find the studs underneath the wall and then screw into the stud on either side of the crack as shown.  This will help stabilize the crack so that the drywall doesn’t shift as much.

Pro tip:  when screwing the screws into the drywall make sure you sink the head of the screw into the paper on the surface of the drywall, but not so deep that you tear the paper.

Step 4:  Embed the drywall tape

When repairing cracks I prefer to use FibaFuse tape instead of regular mesh tape or paper tape.  FibaFuse I have found to be the most durable, and when making a repair to an area that’s cracked I want to make sure that the crack won’t come back.

FibaFuse is embedded, toronto home painters

FibaFuse is embedded

Pro tip:  FibaFuse is a fiberglass tape, so it’s best to use gloves when handling it.

When you mix your Durabond you want the consistency to be a little thinner than peanut butter.  Fill the channel with Durabond and embed the tape, smoothing afterward with a drywall knife to eliminate any air pockets underneath.

Scrape off any excess Durabond before it dries because it is hard to sand once dry.  Let the Durabond dry before the next step.

tape is skim coated, toronto home painters

tape is skim coated

Step 5:  Skim coat the tape

For this step we use Sheetrock, either the powder or the pre-mix, because it is much easier to sand later. Use your large putty knife and coat over both the tape, screws and an area 4-6″ on either side.  Make sure to do one long final pass to keep things as smooth as possible.

Step 6:  Repeat step 5

Step 7:  Sand the area

Go over the area with sandpaper and sand it smooth.  It’s helpful to run your hand on the surface, you will feel ridges in the plaster that you might not see.

Step 8:  Prime the area, re-inspect & touch up, if necessary

toronto house painter

Primed and ready for paint!

Prime the area and once it’s dry re-inspect it to make sure it’s nice and smooth.  If there are any dents or pock marks fill with Sheetrock.

Step 9:  Sand touch ups and paint

Once the touch ups are dry, sand and apply 2 coats of paint.

Step 10:  Clean up

Always be sure to clean up after yourself!

If your walls are cracked and in need of attention, why don’t you schedule an estimate?  CAM Painters would love to Transform Your Home With Lasting Beauty!