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SimpleJack 02-11-2010 07:00 AM

Painting dirty walls
Many places on my interior walls are very dirty.. from what? Not sure really.. Dog rubbing against the walls. Hands rubbing on the walls?
Whatever it is it's very dirty and not that easy to clean since the paint seems to be a flat white color. I will clean the bad spots with some simple green to get it a little cleaner then it is now
Now I'm going to be painting the whole inside of my house very soon.

I will be buying paint from Lowe's or Home Depot. :thumbup:
If the paint was really that bad word would get around so fast no one would ever use it. I have used it on the exterior of my home and no problems at all.
My neighbor painted his house with SW and after 3 coats it's already peeling off his house after 2 years.

Now should I use the paint primer in one stuff they got out now and do 2 coats or should I use Killz type primer and one coat of the paint primer in one stuff?
What would be the best combo of paint or type of paint I should use for my situation?
Would also like to use a paint that can be cleaned easily when the walls get dirty

Cost is a issue since I have many projects going on in the next 2 months.

user1007 02-11-2010 07:03 AM

Not sure I can help you if you have your mind made up to not do a full prep and plan to paint filthy walls with crap primer and paint.

Clean the walls thoroughly with TSP at least. You might have to hit any greasy or oily spots first with mineral spirits or some sort of degreaser that does not leave a residue. I have used Simple Green and Purple Power with a thorough rinse after.

Then use a decent primer and two coats of paint store paint. The contractor grades of something like Benjamin Moore or Sherwin Williams will be the same price as box store crap and it is just better paint!

There is no such thing as primer and paint in one. It is total nonsense, marketing hype for the unwashed masses to fall for.

Snav 02-11-2010 07:14 AM

Well, Simple Jack in Washington. I suggest you mix some baking soda in with hot water - dump it into a mop-bucket - get a stiff head mop of some type (not a rag mop) and mop your walls good.
I do it every time I move somewhere or do any type of painting on old walls - whether they look dirty or not.

If you don't clean - you'll be surprised at how horrible your Kilz stays over the years.

Scuba_Dave 02-11-2010 07:14 AM

I used Behr from HD for years.....I won't buy it any more

Thread here on Behr:

Behr sags & its like painting with molasses at times
I did a side by side test with Glidden & the same brush
The Behr quite simply sucked - $20+ maybe
The $12 gallon of Glidden beat it hands down
Easier to put on, didn't sag or run nearly as much as the Behr
And it covered better then the Behr

As far as your neighbor goes good paint applied over bad paint will still peel
Good paint applied to siding that has a water intrusion problem will still peel
Good paint without proper prep & a good primer will still peel

Do not use the primer & paint all in one
I recommend staying away from the Big Box stores paint
Since you have already stated that is where you will buy paint you may find very few painters here that can help you

SimpleJack 02-11-2010 07:37 AM

Well when I was pricing paint before, the co$t of SW was Double+ per gallon from Valspar. That's just too much.. I spent allot of time prepping the hose before I painted, so the paint went on very well and I have no issues with it at all.

If there is a better paint for the same price range as Valspar type paints, I'm all for it.
But I won't spend $50 to $60 per gallon on paint

TSP is a strong base and can cause severe eye damage and can burn unprotected skin. :laughing:

I might just try the Baking soda and warm water first and hopefully that will be good enough. Unless I'm feeling in a toxic mood, I might try some TSP.

Isn't primer the same thing as flat paint?

I will check out to see what the prices are for interior paints at SW and see how they compare.

So I should do 1 coat of primer and 2 coats of paint for a durable finish?
Is high gloss necessary for a washable finish?

I really appreciate all the fast responses and help. Thanks :)

Snav 02-11-2010 07:53 AM

Tsp works great, though - and you'll notice that almost every chemical to use in various DIY projects have similar warnings.

I prefer Walmart for my paint - $15.00/gallon for all my tinted paints. I usually do textured walls with more than one color so I'd prefer to save as much as possible - and I've never had a problem with quality of paint.
I do buy my Kilz from Home Depot, though.

I've never tried the more expensive brands - I imagine some are different, might work better - but I've never shelled out the money to explore the differences.

GibsonGM 02-11-2010 07:59 AM

Whatever your prep consists of (baking soda, TSP, simple green...), make sure to flush the stuff off when you're done washing, too! Clean water and clean rags, rinsing them often and changing the water. Getting a nice, clean (as possible) surface will assist with paint adhesion and give you a longer paint life span. Let it dry thoroughly before priming.
Primers are NOT the same as flat paint, altho some people do get away with using it as such. A primer is formulated to help the topcoat bond to the substrate (oh, fancy words, eh? lol). Primers also help to 'forgive' the dirt left behind, helping to prevent fisheyes from greasy spots and so on. Killz is "just OK"; it'll work, but I don't think it lives up to its stain killing reputation. Poor man's primer. :no:

Just get some decent primer, apply it (watching for runs!), and use 2 coats of a good paint (we're talking at LEAST $20/gallon). I like Glidden, Ben Moore, of course SW and Valspar. You don't have to use an actual gloss to get a washable surface. Semi-gloss is washable, and satin a little less so. I'd suggest semi or satin for a 'warm' look to your room....gloss is runnier, less forgiving, and the benefits are not worth that 'ultra shiny' look, IMHO. I hate it, in fact.
For best results, you might try cutting in the walls 2x before you paint, to prevent 'hat banding' at the top and in corners. Do it once, then go back and do it again and start rollin'. 3/8" nap roller sleeve.
Have fun!

~Mike (12 yrs. residential painter) :)

user1007 02-11-2010 08:45 AM

If price is a major issue, SuperSpec (Ben Moore) or ProMar (SW) are the tier of contractor grade paints I use alot so price those and see if the store will extend you a discount. I believe each has another tier down for apartment turnover situations etc. that is still better than Behr, Valspar or any of the box store brands.

hyunelan2 02-11-2010 09:03 AM

For big-box paint, my results with Behr - I've used it a lot - is that the flatter the paint, the better the outcome. Flat Behr works just fine. Eggshell a little less-so. Satin sucks. Semi-Gloss is horrid. Haven't gone beyond that. However, I have found that Behr paint sprays out of my Wagner really well, without thinning. Probably because the paint is thin to begin with?

I've also used a lot of Glidden, but only in Flat. It worked well. I think it's hard to screw up flat paint though. I've also used paint from Ace, Menards (whatever their cheap brand is), and WalMart. Ace was probably the best out of those.

I did get a "designer" paint from Ace once - it was a satin white. I only bought it because they were discontinuing the brand at that store and it was the same price as the other paints, I was only doing closets. That paint probably went 2x as far as the next gallon of cheapo satin white I had to buy to finish the job.

mazzonetv 02-11-2010 09:28 AM

not sure why you would ask people on this board for advice and at the same time tell them that you aren't going to listen to their advice by using box store paint =)

Like others have commented - wash the walls good with a TSP mix, or Mex, or something else that won't leave a residue. Prime with a good primer (you can get zinsser 1-2-3 anywhere for less than $20 a gallon). Here in NY Ben Moore Regal Flat can be found for @ $25 a gallon.

Snav 02-11-2010 10:19 AM

Hmm? He was quite polite and thanked us for the replies.

As far as cleaning your work surfaces - since you have many different projects going on - keep in mind that classic cleaners that cost minimal are vinegar, baking soda, borax, lemon juice.
A cleaning pumice stone is super cheap and excellent for cleaning ceramics (ceramic tile, sinks, stoves) (i've found mine in the paint-department at Walmart ONLY - I've never seen it anywhere else around here!)

Rubbing alcohol is cheap, too - and an excellent way to clean areas that need to be treated with silicon - yet for some things like the wax from a toilet ring - you'll want to get a solvent release (usually sold in the paint isle near the thinners) that'll dissolve the wax.

Now - for future reference, to keep paint clean you can scrub it with basic, classic white toothpaste (like what grandma use to use) that has no gel in it - just a paste - with or without baking soda.
But often soap/water for finger-smudges and so on works great.

Oh - and Mr Clean Magic Erasers - they're quite cheap for how good of a job they do.

user1007 02-11-2010 11:09 AM


Originally Posted by SimpleJack (Post 398019)
TSP is a strong base and can cause severe eye damage and can burn unprotected skin. :laughing:

So I should do 1 coat of primer and 2 coats of paint for a durable finish?
Is high gloss necessary for a washable finish? :)

Actually what is now sold most often as TSP is more like faux TSP and a brand familiarity issue. It is safer than the old, real stuff. It is still not a bad idea to cover up, wear gloves and protective eyewear, especially when doing ceilings, with just about any cleaning products.

You should plan on a primer and two coats no matter what but especially if you want to be able to wash walls. If the paint is good quality you do not need high gloss. In fact, clients for whom I have used Ben Moore Aura are amazed at the washability of the flat. It is pricey thoughbut worth it if you have kids I suppose. If you need another reason to change your mind and reconsider, you will not be able to wash WalMart or box store paint much.
For kitchen and bath environments with algae to wipe off now and then or food splatter issues, semi-gloss might be a better bet than lesser sheens.

Remember, the higher the gloss the more imperfections in the wall surface are going to tend to show up and catch the light!

Rcon 02-12-2010 10:46 PM

You should prime it with kilz and paint with behr. Of course you should use a Wagner power painter to spray it on. Don't forget not to mask anything. You should sand the dirty walls with 60 grit (belt sander will work) and clean the walls with with Xylene before you paint. You'll get great results, promise. :whistling2:

ccarlisle 02-13-2010 06:47 AM

Good one! I love xylene too!

So much running around blind... Some folks are so swayed by publicity, or propaganda, or the TV, or what the neighbour said, or the number of $ they think they'll "save" that so little time is spent on what matters - even in a paint job.

So Rcon's answer is right on. Give them something to think about instead of bleating how many dollars they have to spend.

Meanwhile, keep on filling your face in your Nikes...:laughing:

Matthewt1970 02-13-2010 02:26 PM


Originally Posted by sdsester (Post 398006)
Not sure I can help you if you have your mind made up to not do a full prep and plan to paint filthy walls with crap primer and paint.


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