Painting Your Bathroom – Getting it Right
If you’ve ever taken the time, trouble and expense of refitting the bathroom. you know that shiny new bathroom suites, taps and showers are only part of the story. You will want it to continue to look great for years to come. Unfortunately due to the humidity experienced in most bathrooms, painted areas can be the first to start to show wear and tear. In fact, if you fail to apply the right paint in the right way, your bathroom walls or ceiling could be in need of a touch-up within weeks.
To avoid this happening you need to follow some fairly simple rules when it comes to preparing and painting your walls. You will also need to ensure you purchase the right paint to fit your needs.
The first step in any painting job is to prepare the surfaces. It cannot be stressed enough how important this is, as a few hours getting the surfaces right will mean less chance of the paint peeling in the months to come.
- Cover all surfaces, especially the bath, taps and shower. It can be difficult to remove paint from stainless steel without scratching it.
- Use a scraper to remove old paint.
- Fill any holes or cracks with a filler designed for use in a bathroom or kitchen.
- If the surface has been painted previously with a gloss paint, you should use a solvent designed to “de-gloss” paint. This will allow adhesion for the new paint.
- Clean the walls with a sugar soap, being careful to wash off any residue. You may also vacuum the wall to remove dust.
- Paint on a priming paint designed for bathrooms. These are likely to be oil based and will prevent moisture from getting into the wall, particularly where you have fresh filler.
What paint to choose
There are plenty of paints designed especially for bathrooms on the market these days. Some have higher water resistant properties than others and you need to choose the one which suits your circumstances. For example, if your bathroom is well ventilated and does not suffer from damp or condensation, you may choose a paint which is less resistant than others.
Flat or eggshell paints are not suitable for bathrooms. They are not really washable and, therefore, will not suit wet areas.
Matt paint which has been designed for bathrooms is now available. It is easier to apply than gloss and will work well.
Satin paint is suitable for bathrooms where there is little moisture in the air. This type of paint might be ideal for little-used rooms such as toilets or cloakrooms, where there is good ventilation.
Semi-gloss is perfect for most bathrooms. It has a high sheen and will repel moisture.
High-gloss is considered to be the best paint for bathrooms because it is the best repellent of water. The only problem can be that it’s highly reflective sheen can show all the lumps and bumps in your walls. It can also be hard to apply for an amateur.
Mould and mildew resistant paints
In addition to the basic paint types detailed above, you can buy paint which is said to be perfect for rooms where mould is a problem. While it is a good idea to use a mould resistant paint, getting to the root of the problem should always be your priority. Try to discover why you have mould in your bathroom before you try covering it up.
Maintain the look
Even if you have followed all of the advice given here and have chosen the correct paint, you still need to take care to avoid too much moisture getting onto your painted surfaces.
- Keep your bathroom well-ventilated by opening windows or installing an extractor fan.
- Clean your painted surfaces regularly, especially if you notice mould developing. This can destroy the condition of the paint leading to peeling and chipping.
- Try to avoid water splashes on painted surfaces. It is best to have tiles behind baths and sinks. Paint cannot tolerate large volumes of water, regardless of how well it has been applied.