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    Painting and decorating tips

    A trick to speed up stripping wallpaper

    Here’s a trick to speed up stripping wallpaper. Use a craft knife to score lines across backing paper or non-vinyl wallpaper before you soak the paper with water. This allows water to soak into the paper, dissolving the adhesive and making stripping the paper much easier.

    If you use a new paint roller

    Wrap a new paint roller in masking tape and peel it off to remove loose bits of pile.

    How to keep paint brushes from drying out

    If you don’t have time to finish a paint job but are returning to it the following day, wrap the paintbrush in cling film overnight. The bristles will stay soft and the brush is ready to use the following day without resorting to cleaning.

    Painting cabinet doors

    Avoid painting around handles and knobs on cabinet doors by simply removing them.

    Make your masonry drill bits work more efficiently

    To make your masonry drill bits work more efficiently, and last longer, when drilling holes with quite a large diameter, start by using a 3mm drill bit. When you have reached the required depth replace the drill bit with another 3mm larger. Repeat the process until the hole is the correct diameter.

    The best time to paint the exterior of your house

    The best time to paint the exterior of your house is when the walls, doors, window frames or other surfaces have been warmed by the sun, but are no longer in direct sunlight. Paint applied in direct sunlight will dry too quickly causing unsightly brush marks as you cover adjacent areas. Also avoid painting outside on windy days as dirt, insects and other debris can get stuck to the wet paint, spoiling the finish.

    Storing leftover paint

    Storing leftover paint in small tins saves space and preserves the paint’s finish.

    When painting a sash window frame

    If you’re painting a sash window frame, never paint the edges of the sliding sash as this can cause them to stick to the side of the frame. These surfaces still need to be treated with a finish to protect them from moisture damage. The best solution is to use a clear wood sealer.

    Make your own cutting in brush

    Make your own cutting in brush by cutting the bristles of a ½” brush to an angle of 45°.

    Paint the wall before wallpapering

    Always paint before wallpapering as wallpaper paste can be removed from painted surfaces.