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Old 12-15-2008, 09:13 PM   #1
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Painting a room for new baby. Lots of questions.


Just found out that I will be a father. Since this will be our first baby, my wife is acting crazy and wants to do EVERYTHING that she can think of for the baby.

Starter, she wants to paint the room. I have no problem with her wishes, the only problem that I have is I don't know where to start and what to do.

My level of experience.
I am 26 years old and I've help out friends/family member paint a few of there room. I was not the main painter just an assistant. The work that I did was acceptable. I believe that I can do this because I work well with my hand. I've built/install/fix many things, mainly electrical products. I know this is different but I believe I can do it if someone leads me the right way.

I did some reading about paint and how to paint a room. I understand there are two types of paint, water base and oil base. I understand the basics of both of them but there are some questions that I didn't find the answer to.

Odor?
One of the question that I have is how long will the odor be there for. I know it will vary depending on the type of paint. But should an odor be gone in 2-3 months even if I don't use top quality paint? The reason why I ask this is because my wife wants me to paint the room NOW even though we just found out about the baby.

Water base safer?
Is water base a lot safer than oil base even after it dries? Again this is for the baby room. I know the baby won't be crawling around licking the room, but my wife seem to be very concern with the new paint.

How much coverage per gallon?
Can 1 gallon really do about 400sqft? I know that is what they are rated. The room is about 11x11 with 3 walls. If I subtract the surface area of the windows, it would be less than 3 walls. But to be safe, 11x11x3=363sqft, so one gallon "should" be enough?

Sanding
All those times that I helped out in painting the walls, I never seen any of them sanding the wall down and they came out fine. They just painted over the old paint. I didn't know that pros sand the wall before they paint it. I plan to just paint over the current paint. It looks like it is oil base paint right now, but not a flat finish though, kinda lumpy finish I believe its called eggshell finish? If I wanted a flat finish is it still possible to just paint over the old paint and get a flat finish?

How much $$?
Since there are many different brands and quality of paint out there it make it harder for someone who don't know what they are looking for pick the right paint. So how much should I pay a gallon to get decent paint that won't have a nasty odor after a month or so? I tried asking the paint "expert" at the local home depot/lowes store but they don't seem to know what they are talking about.

I haven't looked at the cost of everything yet like the accessory, brush, roller, paint, cover.....But should $100 be enough to do the project if I paint it myself?

Thanks in advance for anyone who is willing to read it all and answer the questions.
-SAi


Last edited by SuperAkuma; 12-15-2008 at 09:16 PM.
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Old 12-15-2008, 11:27 PM   #2
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Painting a room for new baby. Lots of questions.


Quote:
Originally Posted by SuperAkuma View Post
Just found out that I will be a father. Since this will be our first baby, my wife is acting crazy and wants to do EVERYTHING that she can think of for the baby.

Starter, she wants to paint the room. I have no problem with her wishes, the only problem that I have is I don't know where to start and what to do.

My level of experience.
I am 26 years old and I've help out friends/family member paint a few of there room. I was not the main painter just an assistant. The work that I did was acceptable. I believe that I can do this because I work well with my hand. I've built/install/fix many things, mainly electrical products. I know this is different but I believe I can do it if someone leads me the right way.

I did some reading about paint and how to paint a room. I understand there are two types of paint, water base and oil base. I understand the basics of both of them but there are some questions that I didn't find the answer to.

Odor?
One of the question that I have is how long will the odor be there for. I know it will vary depending on the type of paint. But should an odor be gone in 2-3 months even if I don't use top quality paint? The reason why I ask this is because my wife wants me to paint the room NOW even though we just found out about the baby.

Water base safer?
Is water base a lot safer than oil base even after it dries? Again this is for the baby room. I know the baby won't be crawling around licking the room, but my wife seem to be very concern with the new paint.

How much coverage per gallon?
Can 1 gallon really do about 400sqft? I know that is what they are rated. The room is about 11x11 with 3 walls. If I subtract the surface area of the windows, it would be less than 3 walls. But to be safe, 11x11x3=363sqft, so one gallon "should" be enough?

Sanding
All those times that I helped out in painting the walls, I never seen any of them sanding the wall down and they came out fine. They just painted over the old paint. I didn't know that pros sand the wall before they paint it. I plan to just paint over the current paint. It looks like it is oil base paint right now, but not a flat finish though, kinda lumpy finish I believe its called eggshell finish? If I wanted a flat finish is it still possible to just paint over the old paint and get a flat finish?

How much $$?
Since there are many different brands and quality of paint out there it make it harder for someone who don't know what they are looking for pick the right paint. So how much should I pay a gallon to get decent paint that won't have a nasty odor after a month or so? I tried asking the paint "expert" at the local home depot/lowes store but they don't seem to know what they are talking about.

I haven't looked at the cost of everything yet like the accessory, brush, roller, paint, cover.....But should $100 be enough to do the project if I paint it myself?

Thanks in advance for anyone who is willing to read it all and answer the questions.
-SAi
Congradulations!

This is the product I would suggest.

http://www.benjaminmoore.com/bmpsweb...h_findproducts

Aura is suppose to be a low odor / low voc paint from what I understand. I've used there other paints, and the quality is very good.

2-3 months should be more than enough time to clear out any harmful odor that could be present.

Coverage depends on brand, color, etc. Plan on more than 1 gallon. You will also need 2 coats if you want it to look nice. You might get by with out coat if you buy the Aura paint. It is expensive. You will likely only be able to get it at your local BM store. (not going to be at most hardware store, equipment to mix Aura is very expensive)

You want latex based paint. Go to your local Benjamin More store, they should know what they are talking about and will still you top quality products. You probably want a primary, but the BM store will be able to tell you for sure based on what product you buy.

Flat, semi-gloss, gloss, etc are the way it looks, how shiny it is. Nothing to do with the texture. The texture on the wall is created with plaster or other similar compound. I strongly recommend a semi-gloss or gloss, as it is much more cleanable.

Buy a good brush, and a good roller and a good roller cover.

Jamie

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Old 12-16-2008, 02:30 AM   #3
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Painting a room for new baby. Lots of questions.


There are two "kinds" of paint; oil based, which is called "alkyd" and water based, which is called "latex".

Oil based paints use paint thinner as the solvent, so paint thinner will evaporate from the paint as it dries. The drying will take only a few hours, the smell may linger for a few days or even up to a week depending on if you paint exterior walls and how cold those walls are. And, the paint will be effectively at it's full strength and hardness within about 30 days, again depending on temperature of the wall. Few people use oil based paints indoors anymore because they smell more and because of the greater hassle cleaning brushes and painting tools of oil based paint.

LATEX PAINTS
There are two kinds of latex paints; "vinyl acrylic" and "100% Acrylic". Lower priced paints will typically use a vinyl acrylic "binder", which means that the plastic particles that form the solid film are made of a plastic called "polyvinyl acetate" which you probably know as white wood glue. Polyvinyl acetate remains slightly sticky even when it's dry, so if you paint both a door and frame with this paint, the door could sick to the frame a bit when you try to open the door. Or, just laying on a bed with your head resting on the painted wall would result in your hair kinda sticking to the paint.

Also, polyvinyl acetate softens up and cracks and peels (because of loss of adhesion) if it gets wet or even under humid conditions. And, polyvinyl acetate is a softer plastic than the kind of plastic that "100% Acrylic" paints are made from.

100% Acrylic paints are made from a plastic called polymethyl methacrylate, which you probably know better as Plexiglas. Plexiglas dries to a stronger and harder film than polyvinyl acetate, and so you can make paints that stand up to scrubbing better without losing their gloss from a paint that uses a 100% Acrylic binder. Also, paints made using a 100% Acrylic binder don't have any residual stickiness after they're dry, and they don't soften up loose their adhesion if they get wet or under humid conditions.

Both kinds of latex paints will have "coalescing solvents" in them that evaporate as the paint dries (within 1 to 3 days) depending on wall temperature and humidity, but "low odor" or "low VOC" latex paints will have much less smell than regular latex paints.

There is no such thing as a 75% Acryic paint. It either uses one kind of plastic or the other for it's binder resins, so it's either "vinyl acrylic" or "100% Acrylic" and nothing in between. (There is also a third kind of plastic used called "Styrenated Acrylic" which is much more commonly used in Europe, but not too many paints use this kind of binder in North America, and I don't know why.)

Also, there are many different kinds of "100% Acrylic" binders, and you pay more for the ones that dry to the hardest film because they will stand up best to hard scrubbing and also won't get scuffed and damaged as easily, so 100% Acrylic paints stand up to "wear and tear" better.

COLOUR
The different "colourants" in the paint tinting machine are all basically glycerine with different coloured "pigments" in it. Pigments are tiny solid coloured particles that are added to plastics, paints, fibers, cosmetics, paper, leather and even some foods to give them colour. They use glycerine as the carrier fluid for paint tinting colourants because glycerine is highly soluble in both water and paint thinner so the same colourants can be used to tint both latex and oil based paints. Glycerine is much slower to evaporate than water, so the more colourant you add to tint a paint, the longer the paint will take to dry.

The pigments in the different paint colourants in the paint tinting machine fall into two catagories; organic and inorganic. Organic pigments are the colour wheel colours, like red, yellow, blue, green, orange and purple, whereas the inorganic pigments are the "Earth Tones" like mustard yellow, reddish brown, chocolate brown, Raw Umber, black and white. Artists like Da Vince and Michaelangelo have been pulverizing coloured rocks into fine powders to make colouring agents for their paints for thousands of years. In fact, the pigment called "Sienna" gets it's name from the Italian town of Sienna where the soil and rocks are a mustard yellow colour.

The organic pigments are made from chemicals in a lab and have generally poorer hide and are less colourfast than the inorganic pigments. The inorganic pigments are really best thought of as coloured rocks that have been pulverized to a very fine powder and used as pigments to colour paints just as artists have been doing for thousands of years. Rocks are good at being opaque and even better at being old. The good opacity of rocks means that if you pulverize a rock, the powder will also have good opacity and the paint made by using that rock powder as a pigment will hide well. Also, anything that's 300 million years old is extremely chemically stable or it would have rotted by now. That extreme chemical stability of rocks manifests itself into excellent resistance to fading when exposed to the Sun. This explains why rocks that have spent thousands of years in the Sun haven't faded. You can turn a rock over and after cleaning and drying, you can't tell the top from the bottom because there has been no fading on the top side. Consequently, paints that use exclusively inorganic pigments in their tint formula fade very much less with time and exposure to sunlight than those that use organic pigments.

GLOSS
As a general rule, the glossier the paint you use:
A) the less well it hides an underlying colour, and
B) the easier it is to clean with simple wiping, and
C) vice versa. That is, the flatter the paint you use, the better it hides and the harder it is to clean with simple wiping.

So, the procedure to follow is to pull any nail holes and repair them with drywall joint compound. Do any other wall or ceiling repairs with drywall joint compound, too. Sand the repairs smooth and repeat the repair/sand cycle as many times as necessary to get the damaged areas smooth enough to prime. Apply a latex or oil based primer to those repaired areas. Allow time for the primer to dry, then paint the walls (and ceiling).

You want to buy a better quality paint that uses a Plexiglass binder so that it'll dry to a harder film that stands up better to scrubbing.

You want a paint that will hide well so you don't have to apply too many coats to cover the underlying wall colour. Since the white pigment is an inorganic one, this means opting for a white, off-white, pastel or inorganic colour, preferably in an eggshell, pearl or satin gloss.

If you go with a colour that calls for more organic pigments in it's tint formula, you're better off to buy the paint from a paint store rather than a home center. That's because paint stores will have a different tinting machine for each brand of paint they sell. So, if you pay more to buy a Pratt & Lambert, it'll be tinted with Pratt & Lambert colourants, and those colourants are more likely to use more expensive, better hiding and more colourfast organic pigments then Behr would use. If you pick a colour that calls for lots of organic colourants and decide to buy from Home Depot, then that paint will end up with Behr colourants even if you pay twice as much for Ralph Lauren paint. That is, you'll get a better paint binder by paying for the Ralph Lauren paint, but the hiding ability and colourfastness won't be any better than a Behr paint because it'll have the same pigments in it cuz Home Depot uses Behr colourants in it's tint machines, so every can of paint they sell has Behr Colourants in it. The bigger names, like Benjamin Moore, Pratt & Lambert and Sherwin Williams tend to charge more for their paints, but they also opt for better pigments in their colourants too.
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Last edited by Nestor_Kelebay; 12-16-2008 at 02:50 AM.
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Old 12-16-2008, 04:15 AM   #4
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Painting a room for new baby. Lots of questions.


Do NOT paint latex over oil without proper prep!
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Old 12-16-2008, 04:53 AM   #5
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Painting a room for new baby. Lots of questions.


Uh, your math is a bit off...or do you really live in a 11'x11' cube?

I reckon your ceilings are probably about 8' high, so in a square room 11' long by 11' wide, you'll have 3 walls of 88 square feet, less windows etc - so around 260 total sq feet.

That's about 2/3rds of a gallon (for one coat).
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Old 12-16-2008, 07:06 PM   #6
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Painting a room for new baby. Lots of questions.


Thanks everyone for the tip

Quote:
Originally Posted by ccarlisle View Post
Uh, your math is a bit off...or do you really live in a 11'x11' cube?

I reckon your ceilings are probably about 8' high, so in a square room 11' long by 11' wide, you'll have 3 walls of 88 square feet, less windows etc - so around 260 total sq feet.

That's about 2/3rds of a gallon (for one coat).
ccarlisle,
My math is off, I over estimated the numbers on purpose and I don't plan to paint the ceiling.
Thanks for doing the numbers again for me.
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Old 12-17-2008, 10:59 AM   #7
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Painting a room for new baby. Lots of questions.


Any latex paint will be just fine after 2-3 months. Even bottom-shelf, not-worth-the-bucket-it's-packed-in junk won't still stink after that long. Not that you should actually use such paint, of course, just that as far as outgassing goes, you don't need to worry.

As far as safety goes... once the paint dries, it is pretty much inert plastic. The most likely scenario is that it would go in one end and out the other. You probably wouldn't want to eat a whole pound of the stuff, but the chips will be pretty much harmless. The primary white colorant these days is TiO2 (as opposed to lead), which is harmless enough to be used as the "white" in toothpaste.

How much paint to buy? I always end up seeming to use about a gallon and a half for a pretty normal-sized bedroom.

Sheen and "Lumpiness" are two separate things. Sheen is how "shiny" the paint is. ("Flat" is the name of the least-shiny sheen.) The "lumpiness" is determined by how well the paint levels. The most common cause of lumpiness is "roller stipple", which is the pattern a roller leaves behind when applying paint. Different paints do a better or worse job leveling themselves out. If the existing surface is too lumpy, the only fix is to skim-coat the wall with joint compound. Paint itself makes a lousy filler. You can certainly paint Flat over Eggshell, but it won't smooth out the surface.

As far as which paint to buy... go to an actual paint store (not a Big Box) and purchase top-line, or near top-line paint. Quality paint will make the job look better, go faster, and be less likely to fail. From Sherwin, SuperPaint would be a good pick, and it often goes on sale for $30 or so a gal. From Ben Moore, Regal would be the way to go. For your other supplies (all of which can be purchased from your local HD/Lowes):

2 1/2" angle-sash Purdy, Wooster, or Corona brush. ($12 or so from Big Box, but it should last a lifetime with proper cleaning after each use.)
Wooster SherLock roller frame. ($6 or so)
Purdy 3/8" White Dove roller cover ($3-ish)
A sturdy roller tray

The rest of the stuff you need (tarps, a small pail, ladder, etc.) you should already have.

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Old 12-19-2008, 03:47 AM   #8
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Painting a room for new baby. Lots of questions.


Congratulations!I'm soon to be a father so I also have to consider some of these things. Personally I have painted the room already, because I fixed all the house 1 year ago so I won't go through this again, but I suggest you use Behr paint, maybe some colors in Disney collection, they seem to work great for babies.
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Old 12-19-2008, 05:11 AM   #9
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Painting a room for new baby. Lots of questions.


but I suggest you use Behr paint,

Bad suggestion
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Old 12-19-2008, 12:44 PM   #10
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Painting a room for new baby. Lots of questions.


Benjamin Moore just recently revamped a lot of thier paints to reduce VOC's so they are safer. You may still smell the paint weeks after painting but it is basicly harmless.
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Old 12-19-2008, 08:22 PM   #11
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Painting a room for new baby. Lots of questions.


I have not used it yet, but have several gallons of Mythic paint to try. It is advertised as non-toxic. Check it out via Google.
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Old 12-22-2008, 12:06 AM   #12
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Painting a room for new baby. Lots of questions.


You will really get what you pay for out of supplies, especially the paint but roller and brush too. Go to a SW store and ask them about the products. Most have guarantees and the shorter the advertised lifespan will almost surely translate to repainting. Now maybe you intend to repaint in a few years for one reason or another so don't need to use expensive paints? I would echo using a glossy paint to make cleaning easier.
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Old 12-23-2008, 09:43 AM   #13
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Painting a room for new baby. Lots of questions.


Before you paint, do the research. Paints like Mythic, Freshaire, etc. are 100% voc free.

Even though the vapors from other paints will dissipate in the next couple of months, keep in mind that kids like to put things in their mouth.

You might want to stop in the local paint store, not home depot or lowes, but a real paint store. They will be able to steer you in the right direction.

Paints used in hospitals are also readily available. This will guarantee 100% enviornmentally friendly paints and gain points with the wife.
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Old 12-27-2008, 06:09 PM   #14
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Painting a room for new baby. Lots of questions.


Most VOC free paint from most manufacturers will do.
There is plenty of time for the odour to go away.
I like Aura paints.

Last edited by George Z; 12-27-2008 at 06:18 PM.
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Old 12-27-2008, 06:30 PM   #15
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Painting a room for new baby. Lots of questions.


Quote:
Originally Posted by bess View Post
Behr paint is my choice all the way! I love Behr colors a lot!
seriously.... how much are they paying you to post that here?

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