Everyone wonders when to apply a primer before adding color to a painting project. Paint manufacturers often recommend using several coats prior to applying paint to a wall. However, painting can be an expensive task and no one wants to incur unnecessary expenses or time.
Primer can be an extensive task when painting a room. It is as much work as applying the color coat of paint to the wall. It is usually a good idea to prime a wall. However, if the walls are clean, the color is similar or you have the correct paint, you may be able to skip it.
Primer creates a surface that paint can adhere to. It also can cover stains that exist on the wall. There are several situations when primer is absolutely needed.
If you are attempting to paint a wall that is highly porous you need to use a primer first. A great example is new drywall. Joint compound and drywall paper are extremely porous. Paint will soak into these surfaces and will not give you the color and quality you are seeking. Bare wood is another surface that absorbs paint.
If your base coat is a glossy surface it will not hold the new paint well. The best way to approach these surfaces is by applying light sandpaper to scuff the wall, followed by a primer layer. This will help the new paint color stick to the walls.
Dark Paint to Light Paint
If you are changing paint colors from dark to light it is important to apply a primer before you start the new color. If you fail to do this step you will have to apply much more paint and you risk the darker color showing through your new paint. It is best to use at least two layers of primer. Professional painters can tint your primer to resemble your finished color and reduce the amount of primer and paint needed to complete the job.