DIY Tips - Paint Types

Choosing the right paint for a DIY project can be bewildering when you consider the number of different types available in terms of texture, thickness, colour and shades.  But having so much choice actually makes your work easier, as you will have no difficulty in finding the right one for the job at hand, whether interior or exterior.

All paints are either oil- or water-based.  Emulsions are examples of water-based paints and these are usually applied to walls and ceilings indoors.  Glosses and enamels, as examples of oil-based paints, incorporate a solvent and are used mainly for things like window frames, metalwork, skirting boards and doors.  Both types of paint have a choice of matt, sheen and full gloss finishes depending on what you require them for.

Emulsion paint does not require a separate undercoat, but you will need two coats of the emulsion to achieve a decent finish, and maybe three.  A separate undercoat is usually needed for enamel and gloss paints unless these are one-coat types.  The latter are especially useful for covering ceilings because they reduce the amount of work you have to do on these typically back-breaking jobs.

A primer has to be applied if you are painting metal, concrete or bare wood, as this will give the finish paint something to get a grip on.

When you are thinning paint you have to use the proper diluents for it.  Paints that are fully liquid, for example, need careful thinning for a drip-free finish whilst more solid varieties can be thinned easily.

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