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How To Know How Much Paint You Need for a Home Painting Project

May 31, 2023

How Much Paint Do I Need?

Figuring out how much paint you need for your home painting project can be difficult. Not buying enough paint means you have to make another trip to the store while buying too much can mean you spent more than you had to. To get just the right amount of paint (or close to it), it’s important to calculate the surface area of your home. Continue reading to learn how to buy the right amount of paint.

How to Calculate How Much Paint You Need

Gray paint inside of home office

Calculate the Surface Area

The first step in determining the amount of paint required is to calculate the total surface area that needs to be painted. Start by measuring the height and width of each wall in feet. Multiply these dimensions together to obtain the square footage of each wall. Sum up the square footage of all the walls to find the total surface area of your home.

Subtract doors and windows from your measurements

Don’t forget to measure the doors and windows on your walls and subtract their surface areas from the total. You won’t be painting your doors and windows, so you don’t need to buy paint for those areas.

Account for Multiple Coats

To achieve a smooth and consistent finish, it is often necessary to apply multiple coats of paint. Most paint cans provide information on coverage per gallon. Divide the total surface area by the coverage per gallon to get an estimate of how many gallons you will need for one coat. Remember to round up to the nearest whole number to ensure you have enough paint for additional coats. It’s always better to have a little bit too much rather than not enough.

Consider the Paint Type

Different paint types and finishes have varying coverages. For example, glossy paint typically covers less surface area compared to flat or matte finishes. Check the paint manufacturer’s recommendations for coverage information specific to the type of paint you choose. Adjust your calculations accordingly to account for variations in coverage.

This information should be shown on your paint gallon.

Factor in the Surface Condition

The condition of your walls can affect the amount of paint needed. If your walls have existing imperfections, such as cracks, holes, or uneven textures, you may require additional paint to achieve an even appearance. Prepare your walls properly by patching up any imperfections and sanding down rough areas before painting.

Behr paint and primer cans

Don’t Forget Priming

Priming the walls before painting is essential for better adhesion and enhanced color accuracy. If you’re applying primer, include it in your calculations. Primers typically have different coverage rates than paint, so check the product label for information on coverage per gallon. Determine the surface area as mentioned earlier and divide it by the coverage per gallon of the primer.

Pro tip: A lot of modern paint gallons are primer + paint, so choose your paint before deciding to buy primer specifically for this step.

Seek Expert Advice

If you’re unsure about the calculations or facing complex painting situations, consult with a professional painter or a representative at your local paint store. They can provide valuable insights and help you determine the appropriate amount of paint needed based on your specific requirements.

Hire an Orlando Painting Company

Painting your own home can be a difficult, stressful experience. Work with an expert, local painting company to get the job done right without lifting a finger.

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