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How to Use a Paint Roller

Photo by: Bigstockphoto
Photo by: Bigstockphoto

A paint roller is an application tool used to roll paint on a surface. The roller is comprised of two components: the handle and the roller brush. The roller brush is made of an absorbent material that applies paint faster, more evenly. Using a roller brush instead of the usual paintbrush will cut the paint job in half the time! Also, because there’s less streaking, you don’t need a lot of elbow grease to achieve a professional-looking paint job. Below is a step-by-step guide on how to use a paint roller:

You will need:

1 roller cover  and roller cage
Stir sticks
Paint trays and liners
Old newspaper
Masking or painter’s tape
A water spritzer (if you’re using latex paint)
Paint thinner (for alkyd paint)
Any 5 in 1 tool

Step 1: Prep Your Work Space

Start by cleaning the work space and moving away the furniture. Protect the floor from paint splatters by covering it with old newspaper and securing with either masking or painter’s tape. Next, prep your materials by stirring the paint thoroughly with a stick stirrer and attaching the roller brush to its handle.

Pour about ½ inch paint on the tray well and dampen the roller cover lightly. If you’re using alkyd paint, then use a roller brush made specifically for alkyd. With your 5 in 1 tool, scrape the excess water from the roller brush. Roll the brush down the slope of the tray to load up the paint.

Step 2: Start Painting

Lift the roller from the well and place it on top of the rake with your dominant hand. Then, roll the roller brush down, work to achieve an even coverage. Keep loading the roller brush with paint once the coverage starts thinning out or if the brush no longer drips.

To apply the paint correctly, stand with feet shoulder-width apart and place the roller directly in front of you. If you’re using an extension pole, just place your hand on the bottom for more control while the non-dominant hand is placed at the middle for stability and added pressure.

Painting Tips

Now, apply the paint in a diagonal upward motion into an “M” pattern. Continue covering the surface area with paint in a slow, stroke downward. Now cover the “M” strokes with horizontal strokes from the top to the bottom. Smooth out the uneven spots by making a series of downward strokes upwards to downwards. Keep applying the paint this way until the whole wall is covered in paint.

Technique is very important when using a roller brush. By applying the paint in an “M” pattern first followed by horizontal strokes, the coverage remains thin, opaque and even.

We recommend working in small sections of the wall first then moving from dry areas to wet ones. Finally, use a roller cover with the right nap length. The nap length of the roller brush is printed on the packaging. Generally, you should use /8-inch nap for smooth surfaces and ½-inch nap for rough surfaces.

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