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Painting your house is not something that always requires professionals. If you take some cues from the way professionals handle themselves, you can determine which jobs are right for you. If you’re painting interior walls in your home a new color, you can probably handle it yourself. It’s important to take precautions depending on the scenario. If you are painting over a dark wall with another dark color, you can most likely use a paint with primer in it. If you’re painting over a wall with a light color, you probably need separate coats of primer and paint.

Painting with a Dark Color

If you are painting over a dark wall with another dark color, you can usually get away with using a paint with primer in it. That’s especially true if you are applying a color darker than the original color. If you’re applying a color that’s not quite as dark but still could be considered a dark color, paint with primer is still a good option.

Paint with primer is not as effective as an actual two-step process for covering old paint. Paint with primer is best when applied to a surface that has already been painted since you do not need to prepare an already painted surface to accept paint. Basically, paint with primer is somewhere between not using primer at all and using the usual two-step process. It is a good middle ground if the wall is already painted and you are painting it with another dark color.

However, if you are painting a dark wall with a light color, you need to use a primer.

Painting with a Light Color

The problem with painting a light color over a dark color is that the dark color will oftentimes show through in small ways. You will likely be able to get coverage, but the dark color will still make itself known. For example, if you paint over a dark red wall with a light blue, you’ll likely be able to cover all of the red. However, the wall might look a little bit more purple than you would like. That’s because the red will still be showing through the blue.

The best way to avoid this is to paint the wall with a primer first. Primer is used to cover up old paint and to prepare a wall to be painted. It is chemically engineered to help paint adhere to surfaces. If you’re painting over a dark wall with a light color, you need to use a white primer. If you’re painting with a color that is a little bit darker, you should use a gray primer.

When applying the primer, make sure to use “M” or “W” motions. Also, make sure to roll the paint roller up the slanted side of the paint tray. That will help you remove excess primer. Removing excess primer from the roller means that you won’t create roller lines on your wall.

After that is accomplished, you should let the primer dry. Usually, only one coat of primer is needed since it is designed to be thick and cover walls evenly.

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