The Answer Man

man's hand using a paint roller to paint a fresh coat of white paint on a wall

Answer Man 101: How to Paint a Room


If you want to update the look of your home without breaking the bank, repainting can be a great option. Choosing the right paint can give your house the personality that makes it your home. While some people may opt for hiring a professional painter, anyone can tackle their next repainting job by following these 8 steps. 

1. Prepare for Painting  

Before beginning this process, make sure the area you are repainting is properly ventilated. If you do not have sufficient ventilation, look to purchase a respirator mask before beginning. Begin the painting process by removing all the fixtures and furniture you can from the room, including outlet covers. Once this is done, inspect the walls for cracks, dents, holes, or other imperfections. Use a lightweight spackling compound or caulk and a putty knife to fill any remaining imperfections. Once you have filled these imperfections, skim the excess spackling compound with your putty knife and let it dry completely. Once these areas are dry, use very fine sandpaper or a sanding sponge to smooth the repaired areas down. Wipe the walls clean with a damp towel and let them dry before proceeding to step #2. 

2. Apply Painter’s Tape  

Once you have prepped the walls for painting, apply painter’s tape to all of the edges of surfaces you do not want to paint. Make sure to press the painter’s tape flat to avoid bleed-through. 

3. Drop Cloths  

Once you have taped off your trim and other surfaces, spread drop cloths on the floors and remaining furniture to protect them from paint drips or splatters. Drop cloths can be made of canvas, plastic, or paper – I recommend going with canvas drop cloths for the floors and plastic for the furniture. 

4. Prime & Paint Ceiling  

Begin the priming process by cutting in the edges (near the areas you have taped off) with a paintbrush. Next, use a paint roller to cover the ceiling with primer – start in a corner and roll in overlapping rows, and move out in 3-foot grids to ensure a consistent layer. Once the primer has dried, cut in the edges of the ceiling with paint then use your paint roller to cover the rest. Roll the paint out and continuously blend with the previous edge until you have covered the entire ceiling. 

5. Prime Walls  

After priming and painting your ceiling, apply primer to the walls. This process will be the same as priming the ceiling – begin by cutting in with a paintbrush, then roll on primer in 3-foot grids to ensure even coverage. 

6. Sand the Primer  

Once the primer is completely dry, sand it down to an even level. 

7. Paint the Walls  

Begin painting by cutting in the entire room, then proceed to paint one wall at a time, from top to bottom. Use “V” or “W” shaped strokes to cover each section in paint, then roll over the area in a smooth top-to-bottom stroke to even the paint and cover lines. Overlap areas that have already been painted to ensure a smooth and even coat. Do not forget to frequently mix your paint to keep it from drying out. Once you 

have completed your first coat, give the paint between two and four hours to thoroughly dry, then repeat these steps for the second coat. 

8. Finishing the Job  

Right before the paint is completely dry, or shortly after, remove the painter’s tape. Be careful to avoid leaving the paint on for too long, as it can tear or leave a residue if left on for too long. Once you have removed all the tape, tightly seal any remaining paint, and wash your brushes and rollers with warm soapy water. 

Come see us at CC Farm & Home for all your painting supply needs and so much more. The people asked how to paint a room, and as always, the Answer Man had the answer.