Knowing when and how to use primer can be tricky especially if you are a new do it yourselfer. I don’t know about you, but when I first started painting my projects, I had no idea if I needed to use primer or not. It was a little intimidating. I accidentally bought an entire gallon for a small project (how embarrassing and costly). As with many things, I learned through experience. Here are a few tips and rules of thumb that I have learned along the way.
When To Use Primer
• When the surfaced is cracked or has holes
• When you are using lighter paint colors
• When you are changing two types of paint (i.e. applying latex over oil paint)
• When painting over dark colors
Why Use Primer
• Primer acts as a bond and will strengthen and adhere to your cover paint
• To correct flaws and uneven surfaces
• To protect the surface and keep moister and mildew out
• To increase durability and keep paint from chipping or flaking
• To create an even and smooth hue and mask brush marks
• To extend the life of your paint with a longer lasting color
How To Use Primer
• Sand any lumps or flaws
• Thoroughly clean your surface and make sure it is clear of debris and dust
• Make sure the primer is completely dry between each coat
• Two coats typically does the job
Bonus Tip: Often times paint stores and hardware stores have an “oops” table. In order to save money for a paint project, make sure you check for paint color mistakes from previous customers. You may find what you are looking for a much lower price.
These tips can be used whether you are refurbishing an old piece of furniture or a flea market find, or if you are painting or repainting a room. Hope this helps!