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When to Use a Paint Brush VS. a Paint Roller

Posted on Dec 29, 2016 6:00:00 AM by Eric Dokey

when-to-use-a-paint.jpgEvery job needs the right tool. This saying rings true for all painters. Knowing whether to use a paint brush or a paint roller can save you time and money, not to mention, make you look like you’re the professional we know you are.

A paint roller and a paint brush are two very different tools that essentially can both get the same job done. While that may be true, both the brush and the roller have their time and place. Brushes are ideal for small areas, or areas where more precision painting is needed. Brushes are ideal for trim, corners, and edges. A roller is designed to cover a large area, and hold a lot of paint to cover more area at once. Paint rollers are perfect for walls, ceilings, and any large size surface.

1. Brushes

Brushes come in many styles and sizes, and choosing one is a personal experience. While picking out a brush, consider the surface area of where you want to paint. Pick it up, notice how it feels in your hand. Another consideration is bristles. You’ll want to have some idea of what bristly type, size, and style will work best for your painting project.

Some considerations for brush size:

  • 1-2 inch: Best for small spaces, tight trim areas, touch-ups and detail work.
  • 2.5-3 inches: Best for any trim or corner work.
  • 4-5 inches: Best for larger areas like walls. 
2. Rollers 

Rollers also come in different sizes, as well as different lengths and materials. When choosing a roller, consider the size of the area you need to paint, as well as the surface area. You’re probably going to want a different nap, or pile depth, length, depending on your surface type.

Some considerations for nap length:
  • 1/4-inch-3/16-inch: Best for smooth surfaces like plaster.
  • 3/8-inch-1/2-inch: Best for smooth and semi-smooth surfaces like drywall.
  • 3/4-inch-Best for semi-rough surfaces like wood.
  • 1-inch-1 1/4-inch: Best for rough surfaces like stucco.
  • 1 1/2-inch: Best for extremely rough surfaces like a concrete block.

Once you know which tools is best for the job, you’ll be well on your way to completing a successful painting project. If you have more questions, or would like to schedule a free estimate, please contact us.

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Topics: Residential

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