Have you ever noticed small imperfections, dents or cracks after painting? It happens to all of us but it can be avoided by sanding and preparing a wall surface. Painting over a wall, whether it is to change the color, or give it a fresh coat seems easy enough, but you have to remove the imperfections, because the paint won't hide them, no matter how many coats you use. An important step prior to painting is getting your walls ready for the paint. Paint must be applied to a clean, dry surface that is free of dust, dirt and any other problems. Otherwise you will notice the imperfections after the painting, when it is too late.
With any project safety comes first. Since the process of sanding involves the removal of material it creates airborne dust. We recommend safety glasses or goggles, work gloves, a work apron or close fitting clothing and an approved dust/mist respirator.
Using a paint scraper, remove any old paint that is loose, peeling, or otherwise unattractive. If during this process the wall surface reveals cracks, dents, depressions, or any nail holes fill them using a joint compound. Let the compound dry as per manufacturer instructions, and then sand the compound using medium grit sandpaper (100, or 120-grit). Norton recommends using Norton 3X or All-Purpose sandpaper. They are designed for light sanding of surfaces. To ensure you are keeping a flat surface use a sanding block or pole sander. Sand the entire area using a circular motion, apply even pressure throughout action.
Caution: Be aware that if your home is very old, there is a significant chance that there may be lead paint on the walls and trim. The dust you create when sanding releases the lead and;could be a health hazard. Protect yourself accordingly.
Using a clean rag or a tack cloth wipe down the wall surface to remove any dust left from sanding. It is important to let the wall dry after cleaning if any amount of water is used. Otherwise you may find the moisture may get trapped by the paint and cause bubbling or more problems later. Once surface is clean and dry begin painting.
Wood Finishing Tack Cloth
Sandpaper (100, 120 grit)
drywall knife or compound spreader
tack cloth or sponge
Norton Project Planning Form