More Painting Help and Tips......

Hi all,

I know that there are lots of renovators on the forum and thought I might ask a question that will benefit lots of people who are looking at doing maintenence or reno's in the future.

I was wondering if anyone has preferences on :

1. Good brands / types of paint to use
2. Good brands / types of paintbrushes to use

for any particular jobs. If everyone could put their thoughts I'm sure it would be useful to alot of people.

eg. If you are painting internal gyprock walls, I would suggest you use XXX brand paint. For cutting in, you should use XXX and then for the main surface use a XXX type and XXX brand roller.

I'm sure all the forum members would love to hear your experiences and opinions. I look forward to the responses.

PIppety ;)
Good idea, Pip :)

I'll start the ball rolling by nominating Dulux One Coat Ceiling White as my favourite- easy to apply and one coat!!! I love it :)

As for brushes, I tend to go for the Oldfields and Roksets. Good middle of the range brushes. I always stand new ones in hot water the night before I use them (to minimise bristles falling out first time you use them) and clean them straight after use. I have read that, to be extra pedantic, you should store them upright with the bristles wrapped in paper and a rubber band. I don't do this (too lazy) but some would.........

As for cutting in, I have used those foam squares but have better luck hand doing it. After a while, you get quite good at it :)

I was talking to the guy in the paint dept at BBC the other day and he was telling me that water based acrylics are getting better all the time- so much so that enamels will soon be in the minority when it comes time for us to choose paint types for window and door frames etc. I did use a low gloss acrylic for the last skirting boards I painted and they are holding up well (so far). I really hate painting with enamel though :)

Just some quick thoughts anyway...
Looking forward to reading others
so you don't have to clean your enamel coated brush each day - either leave it in a container of water so the air does't get to the paint or in a container of kero.

kero is also good for cleaning enamel paint as it oils and keeps the brush soft and can be used over and over again as the old paint settles to the bottom.
Thanks Ruk and Jacque.

Surely there must be lots of others out there who have ideas. Your comments would be great.

I leave my brushes (modest quality) soaking in turps, but to prevent the bristles bending drill a hole in the end of the brush handle, or get a brush with a hole in the end, and slot a piece of stiff wire through it to "suspend it" in the container, so the bristles don't touch the bottom of the container. Keep the container itself covered to prevent rapid evaporation of the turps.

Last time I spoke to a paint specialisist they said most brands were comparative, but my favorites are:

1. Wattyl Solagard for anything exterior, or Dulux X10. Both rated 10 years before repainting, neither needs priming etc.

2. I like Taubmans for walls since it seems to go on very easily and its hard to see roller marks etc in it.
I went to a specilist paint store, hung around looking for a while. I saw an old guy covered in paint turn up, order a heap of paint, and take it with his team to his truck and drive off.

I thought if a cheaper brand is good enough for the pros it's good enought for me. It was. Went on fine, still looks good. I'll get the brand tonite and add it to the post.
the paint store will sell you tradesmans quality paint if you want.

i have used both and find the premium brands give a better coverage and are easier to keep clean - have found wattle and berger the best but have not painted for about 10 years so thgings may have changed.
The paint I use is Zinsser. Never heard of it, but it works very well. With two small kids who have artistic bents, I'm scrubbing my own walls regularly and the paint hasn't shifted at all.

Hiya Jas,

So what is the benefit of this paint brand apart from Dulux etc ? Is it mainly the cost ? If so, what is the approximate cost saving ?

PIppety ;)
There was quite a big saving, about $10 - $15 per 4 ltr tin. I had no problems with washing or coverage either. The only issue I had on the last place was underestimating the amount of paint I needed and of course, the colour was different in the new batch.

BTW: The way I got around that was I bought the new paint before I had used up the old. I mixed the two together and got something pretty close.

"If it's good enough for the Pros" ...

I'd be checking if the "Pro" was painting his own place or someone elses. When a "Pro" paints someone elses house he is also looking to get out of the deal at minimum cost to himself, whilst still delivering an acceptable level of quality.

Speak to someone who does not have a vested invested in selling you cheap or expensive paint.

Wattyl have their Tradex brand and I tend to see their tins everywhere (eg. building sites for new houses going up). It might well be a good compromise between cost and quality.

You will also save money by estimating quantity correctly and purchasing 10L or 20L tins.

I remember buying Wattyl Solagard not that long ago at $50 per 4L tin or $104 for $10L.
Hi All.

Many moons ago I worked for Wattyl Paints.

Back then trade labels and premium versions were one and the same. There were budget versions as well. The trick is match the paint types. IE: Trade version of satin acrylic should be the same as the premium, however a satin plastic will be different.
Same went for Solagard. Not sure if this theory still holds.
Also, some paint store chains will often carry their own brand. This is usually equivalent to the premium stuff. Their bulk purchase power means that it can sometimes be cheaper than "label" trade prices.

Finally, a few tips on mixing paint. If you are buying in 10lt cans, then perhaps use a new clean plastic bin and mix it all together to get a consistant colour.
If you start to run low and need more, finish a complete wall so that any variation will not be noticeable.
I find that the bin is great when spraying as it gives you enough capacity to add water for thinning purposes.

If you are using a 4lt trim colour and run out, always go back and buy the same brand and have it tinited at the same shop.
Surprisingly, not all whites are the same, and what are known as "Bandit" (copied formulae of the opposition's colours) can vary depending on tint colours used. Confused? Trust me, it happens.
Same rules of blending noted above still apply.

As you can see, I am almost an expert with hindsight. This advice is based on my own stuff ups where a friend dashed out to get some more paint to finish the job. Bunnings was nearby. How different could the paint be??? Had to redo quite a bit of trim!

Hope this helps,

King of the Karsal.
When Michael Croft was doing his Renovation Magic seminars, he was recommending exterior matt for interiors (as far as I remember). The reason was that exterior paint is designed not to fade in sunlight- and interior paint is frequently exposed to the sun, and permanent furniture can lead to "shadows". A little more expense at the start can lead to years more life.

I followed his advice six months ago, but I am going to have to wait some years to know if the advice was good.

I remember reading the story about Alan Bond of WA fame who was reputedly a painter prior to becoming an entrepreneur.

He won a Government contract to paint one of their buildings and bought a 44 Gallon drum of paint (about 200 litres I think) which he calculated wouldn't cover the whole building, so every so often, watered it down a bit.

The story goes that when he finished the job he still had 44 gallons of paint left over.

Professionals can sometimes do jobs in a manner which we may have trouble emulating.


To my knowledge, the main difference between interior and exterior paint is that exterior is more "elastic",thus able to expand and contract with the weather. Thus the paint is softer than interior paint.
If the rule applied in reverse, then why not use interior paint outside?

To this day, there is not a product out there that is 100% fade proof, exterior or otherwise.

There are however, certain interior coluors that are unsuitable for exterior use due to the pigments used, and do not stand up to UV rays.

As for using exterior paint internally, well I will beg to differ, as a softer paint will get knocked around more readily.
Besides, exterior paint is generally much more expensive so may provide false economy.

I stand to be corrected should anyone be able to prove otherwise.

Ex- Technical Advice Officer, Wattyl Paints (tongue firmly in cheek).
King of the Karsal
I did a crash course in paint mixing at Bunnings.

In South Australia they won't touch Solver paints because of there huge discount to pro painters.

Not sure how hard it would be to pass yourself off as a pro painter to get the discount with them? if you have some paint stained overalls and an ABN it might be worth a try!

Opening a trade account with a hardware store may give you extra savings and a once a month bill. I always take my mother along to get the 5% seniors card discount at Mitre10....every little bit helps lol
Hi Sam,

My experience dates back some 20 years when I sent my brother in law to buy 4 litres of 'tapioca cream' exterior acrylic and he came back with 20 litres. So the next place had tapioca cream interior walls - satin.

What I have found is that the exterior paint seems to be UV stabilised (well the manufacturers claim it is anyway) and has faded less than that used in other properties - a real bugger when a tenant moves out with the outline of their paintings clearly visible and the walls don't need painting. It has some other benefits too being very good in the wet areas seeming to be more mould/water resistant. It is also washable/scrubable.

I haven't noticed any difference in abrasion resistance; all acrylic paints seem similar in this regard. Mind you I haven't tried the teflon/carbon-fibre/kevlar derivatives;)

As for price their is little difference overall when comparing similar quality paints (internal vs external). Mind you I also buy at trade and as you know there are sliding scales of prices depending on volume, "Trade less xx%" being the order of the day.

Oil based enamels I still use on skirting, archtraves and doors - the occasional wet area too. Nothing beats it for knock resistance and it is truely water proof. The down side is that it is not as flexible and those movement cracks really show (particularly in rendered brick).

One of the things that I think looks cheap (in a non architect inspired home) is when every thing is painted one colour. Yes it's easier but it's really boring.

regards, Michael Croft