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From scuffs and scraps to dust and dirt, skirting boards suffer from a lot of general wear and tear. Which is why it pays to regularly refresh them with a lick of paint to keep them looking their best. But before you go rushing for the paintbrushes, you’re going to have to get primed and prepped first.


How To Prep Your Skirting Boards For Painting

From scuffs and scraps to dust and dirt, skirting boards suffer from a lot of general wear and tear. Which is why it pays to regularly refresh them with a lick of paint to keep them looking their best. But before you go rushing for the paintbrushes, you’re going to have to get primed and prepped first. That’s why we’ve put together this handy guide to show you how.

What You'll Need Before You Start

Make sure you get the following items together before you begin:

Sandpaper – a medium to fine grade will work best

A sponge and sugar soap

A paintbrush – a 2” soft brush is usually best

Something to protect your surroundings – either a dust sheet or old towels will do

Your desired skirting board paint

It’s worth noting that you should make sure that you have completed any additional painting first. You don’t want to paint your ceiling or walls after you’ve already done your skirting boards as any drips could ruin all your hard work!

Step 1: Prepare your surroundings

First, make sure any furniture is moved well out of the way. Then use the masking tape to tape down your dust sheet (or alternative) as close to the skirting board as possible. This will protect your carpets and floors from any rogue drips or spillages.

Step 2: Remove any excess dirt

Carefully sponge the sugar soap onto the skirting board to cut through any existing dirt or grease. You’re going to want to make sure that you get rid of any marks as they will potentially show through the paint. It will also make sanding them that bit easier if you’ve already removed some of the grime.

Step 3: Lightly sand the old paint

Sanding down some of the old paint is essential if you want to achieve a seamless finish. But don’t worry, you don’t need to spend hours taking off every last scrap of paint. A light sanding should be sufficient to achieve a suitable surface for the new paint to stick to.
 
Once you’ve finished, make sure you clean away any dust so it doesn’t cling to the new paint. It might be worth vacuuming the area and quickly wiping the skirting board with sugar soap again. That way you can be sure it’s totally clean in order to achieve that flawless finish. Make sure it’s completely dry before painting.

Step 4: Protect your walls

Once your skirting boards are dry and ready to be painted, you need to protect your walls above them just like you’ve done with your carpet. Use the masking tape to form a protective lip above the skirting board so it acts as a barrier between the board and the wall.

Step 5: Use the primer

Now it’s time to prime your skirting boards. Use the brush to gently apply the primer, being careful not to put too much on at a time. That way you will avoid unsightly streaks and drips.
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Make sure you paint in a logical route around the room by starting in one corner and ending in another. And make sure your strokes are always even and in the same direction.
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Leave the primer to dry (which will usually take between 2 and 6 hours depending on the brand) and then assess if you think you need a second coat of primer or not depending on the coverage.

Step 6: Time to paint!

And now for the best part. Apply your chosen paint using exactly the same method as you did with the primer. For the best results, you’ll want to apply two coats, but make sure you leave the first to completely dry first.

Step 7: Admire your handy work

When everything is dry, carefully remove the masking tape and clear away the dust sheets. Then all that’s left to do is take pride in a job well done.