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Which Paint is Best? Interior Painting in Cincinnati

When you’re working on a home project, chances are you spend a lot of time in the local big-box home store. They’re great for giving homeowners the tools they need to complete a DIY project on their own. They’re not always great, however, for getting helpful advice. This is especially true in the paint department. There are so many paint choices offered that it can be a little overwhelming for even a seasoned DIY painter. Moreover, it can be hard to tell if the guy at the paint counter is recommending a product because it’s good or because it’s the store’s “marquee” brand. So how do you know which paint is best for your project?

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One of the biggest (and newest) questions homeowners face is whether new paint-and-primer-in-one products are better than using paint alone or a coat of primer followed by paint. The price tags are certainly different, but promises of one-coat coverage can be persuasive. How do you choose?

What is the “old way?”

Which paint is best? Generally, painters, when painting walls, have used a coatof primer after repairing the wall and sanding. Primer adheres to various surfaces better than paint, and creates a better bond between the paint and wall. Primer also serves to create an initial cover coat when painting over a bold color like red or royal blue. Some primers have stain blocking qualities, and this can be helpful when drywall has minor water stains, crayon markings, or other imperfections.

After a coat of primer, painters will then apply one or two coats of their chosen paint, either by sprayer, roller, or brush.

What is “2-in-1” paint?

When you’re trying to choose a paint for your project, you’ll probably come across “paint plus primer,” or “2-in-1” paint. Also called “self-priming paint, this is meant to provide better coverage over other colors, produce good coverage in a single coat, and adhere to various surfaces better than paint alone.

What is it, really? Despite the marketing, it’s usually just thicker paint. That’s not necessarily a bad thing. The thicker paint allows for the better coverage that’s promised, as you’re rolling on paint with a higher build, or dried thickness, on your wall. Some painters will tell you it also drips and runs less than traditional paint.

So, which paint is best?

When you ask which paint is best, 2-in-1 or traditional paint, the answer is going to depend on who you ask. Some people will swear by paint-and-primer-together. Others insist on a coat of primer followed by whatever their chosen color and finish is. Generally speaking, however, our experience is this:

2-in-1 Paint:

  • Covers similar colors better in one coat
  • Runs/Drips Less
  • Effective on drywall, less so on other surfaces
  • Usually requires a second coat anyway
  • Is more expensive

Coat of Primer, Coat of Paint:

  • Paint adheres to surface better
  • Covers bold colors with equal effort
  • Less expensive
  • Requires additional clean-up of brushes, rollers
  • Can take longer, depending on number of coats

None of this is groundbreaking stuff, but there are some important points here. First, if you’re painting unfinished drywall, primer is going to allow the paint to adhere to the surface better. Secondly, if you’re painting over a bold color, you’re not likely to cover it with one coat of the 2-in-1 paint, which is the main selling point. And finally, a gallon of primer can cost as little as one quarter of what the paint plus primer will cost. This means that, if you’re going to be doing multiple coats anyway, making the first coat cheaper will save you money.

Sick of Painting? Don’t Care Which Paint is Best? Call ProMaster!

Even if you know which paint is best, that doesn’t mean that you want to deal with the actual painting yourself. If that rings true to you, no problem. Just contact ProMaster! Our team of craftsmen would love to help you with any of your home repair needs, including painting. Simply call 513-322-2914, schedule online, or use the “Reach Out” form at the bottom of this page.

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