Professional Painting Frequently-Asked Questions


    As professional painters, we at Ireland’s Finest get many questions about our work and how we go about painting homes. We also get questions about which paints to choose for different situations, and more. Let’s answer a few of the most commonly-asked questions we get regularly.

What type of paint works best for which area of the house?

We’re starting with a big question because people ask this often. The type of paint you use depends on the surface you’re painting and its location. Outdoor bare wood surfaces are usually best covered with an alkyd or acrylic latex primer, followed by common latex paint. For a smooth finish try a 100% acrylic latex flat paint, which gives the surface an eggshell effect, rather than a shiny one.

For outdoor trim areas, typically a 100% acrylic latex semigloss paint is best. This is the longest-lasting paint for smooth trim, whether the surface is wood, composite, or another manufactured type. Exterior floors, on your porch, for example, are best covered by a glossy floor paint, specifically made to be more durable with higher resin content to protect against shoe and boot wear and tear.

For rough siding, either boards or plywood, use a semi-transparent oil stain, which, contrary to many assumptions, comes in many different colors. For deck surfaces that you want to maintain their natural look, use a water-repellant preservative or a semi-transparent oil stain, both of which guard against rot.

For interiors, you’ll want standard paints that come with the lowest amount of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and that cover old paint and surfaces well.

Which paint sheen do I need?

The ‘sheen’ or ‘finish’ of a paint indicates how well it will hold up to the elements after it’s dried on a surface. It will also affect how the paint ‘feels’—smooth or matte, etc.—and how it reflects light.

There are general sheen rules for each room of the house:

  • Kitchen: High gloss or semi-gloss—these smooth finishes make it easier to clean the walls and harder to chip or peel
  • Family/Living Room: Satin finish—a satin finish makes walls relatively easy to clean and able to stand up to high traffic without the shiny finish of a gloss
  • Dining Room: Eggshell finish—for a smooth look in a relatively low-traffic area
  • Bedroom: Flat or matte finish—for good color coverage in a low-traffic area

What prep work do you do before you start painting?

Prep work is everything. At Ireland’s Finest, we always make a full inspection of the painting area and repair minor surface damage. Then we sand and scrape away old paint, caulk any holes, and put masking tape and covers on the trim and other areas that we paint later.

What should I do while you’re painting?

Make sure all small or fragile items are out of the way of danger, remove any valuables you don’t want paint on, make sure your pets are secure and out of the way, and relax.

How do I pick paint colors?

It can be mind-boggling to look at all the paint color options. We refer people to the Color Psychic. Visit her websiteto find your perfect hue.

Do I need to pay a deposit?

We don’t require deposits to start working. However, for projects that last longer than a week, we require progress payments.

Don’t hesitate to reach out to uswith more questions. We’re happy to help!

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