7 Tips on How to Repaint a Drywall – And Fix Peeling Paint

Repaint a Dry Wall to Fix Peeling Paint

Drywall is basically a panel composed of calcium sulfate dihydrate or gypsum.

Other names include plasterboard, wallboard, sheetrock, gypsum board, or gypsum panel.

There is a 90% chance that the walls and ceilings of your house are made up of drywall because it is extremely easy to install and have comparatively low installation and fitting cost.

The major concern, however, is you will need to repaint them every three to five years to keep them in good condition.

If you are planning to repaint drywall the same color as the old paint, then you do have some advantages in terms of preparation compared to painting a wall where you want to change the color.

However, you will still have to do some preparation, especially if you want to repaint the drywall that has peeling paint.

What follows are seven solid tips for repainting drywall that already has paint on it. We will first take a look at repainting drywall with the same color…

How to Repaint a Drywall The Same Color?

Painting over painted walls (with nearly the same shade as before) is fairly easy if you know the right steps to follow.

Here are a few easy steps that can make the process easier and more fun-filled.

Remember, you always have the option to take the help of your partner or kids if you feel it boring to do it all alone…

1- Consider the Age of the Current Paint

Generally speaking, you should never paint over existing paint because the differences in age or condition mean your new paint job will not last longer than the old one.

The old paint underneath will continue to age and deteriorate, and will take your new paint with it once it starts to peel and separate.

You should only paint over existing paint if it is still fairly new, such as being a year or less old, for example.

Paint that is still that new might be considered a previous coat rather than old paint, and you should treat it as such.

Otherwise, you should go ahead and remove the old paint first and start adding new paint.

Also, remember that the old paint can be treated as a primer if it is still fairly new. This means you do not need to purchase any primer if you are keeping the old paint.

However, you should thoroughly check the old paint and look for any signs of cracking, fading, or peeling.

If you see such signs, you will need to remove the paint and get a primer.

Care that you choose the right primer for drywall if you need to apply the primer on the wall.

2- Gather the Right Painting Tools

Once you are ready to paint, you will need to get all the right tools for the job, which include the following;

  • Paint
  • Brushes and Rollers
  • Tarp for the Floor
  • Painter’s Tape for the Edges
  • Mask and Protective Clothing
  • Cleaning Items

The right tools make the job go much easier and faster.

3- Clean the Wall Properly

After you have examined all the things carefully and have your tools in place, you are ready to get started.

Start by cleaning the wall thoroughly using a gentle detergent, but mostly with water.

Your goal is to remove any grease, debris, stains, and marks on the old paint.

You may find some imperfections, dents, or cracks that you may want to fill. You can do so with the right putty for the job.

Remember that the painter’s putty will probably be a different color, so you must use it as little as possible. It should be just enough to fill the imperfection and nothing extra.

If the area that needs to be addressed is small, you should not have to add any additional coats to that location.

This means you can paint over it, and the paint will still look even on the drywall.

4- Apply at Least Two Coats of Paint

Before applying the paint over sheetrock, ensure the paint is properly mixed and ready to go.

Use the rollers on the drywall and brushes along the edges to ensure a smooth first coat.

Once completed, you can then switch to rollers for the second coat and use the brushes to get any small areas remaining.

Once finished, you can use the cleaning items to remove any paint that might have bled through the tarp or been splattered on the ceiling or other walls.

Keep in mind that two coats are recommended, even if the paint brand claims that one coat is enough.

The first coat is the base and the second coat is the surface area. Two coats will also hide any putty you might have used as well.

You may need to add a third coat if you find that two coats are not enough.

Be sure to inspect the drywall after it has dried so that you can judge the results.

How to Repaint a Drywall with Peeling Paint?

Now you know how to repaint drywall the same color.

But what about trying to repaint drywall that has peeling paint or an old peeling wallpaper?

The answer is that you will have to do some extra preparation to fix the peeling paint on drywall, even if the paint is still the same color as before.

It is because the peeling paint indicates that it is worn or damaged by heat, humidity, and the elements if it is outside.

Below are a few tips to help you repair and repaint a wall with peeling paint…

fixing the wall that has peeling paint
The wall that has peeling paint

5- Discover the Reason for Peeling

Remember that if the paint is peeling, there is a reason why.

For the most part, the paint peels due to age. Being worn down by time, heat, humidity, and so forth are the most common reasons.

However, there may be another reason why the paint is peeling – it may be something that is not right about the wall the paint is on.

There may be something about the drywall that creates too much heat or humidity to keep the paint attached properly.

Walls that have pipes behind them or something that generates a significant temperature difference compared to the room may be why the paint is not sticking.

You will need to address that reason before you buy your new paint.

Otherwise, you will be faced with the same problem not long from now after you apply the new paint.

Once you have finished discovering the reason and making the necessary corrections, you can now clean and prep the drywall for the new paint.

6- Scrape Away the Old Paint Before Painting

If the wall has peeling paint, it is too damaged to remain on it.

You will therefore need to prep the area and scrape away the old paint first.

This includes the chipped paint that still looks intact because it is probably old or damaged as well.

Use a good paint scraper and sander to remove the old, peeling paint.

The good news is that the loose paint, which is peeling, is generally easier to remove from the chipped spots, and it does not take much of your time.

While removing them, ensure that you remove all the paint from the flaking areas until the wall has a firmly adhered layer of paint left behind.

Make sure you do it carefully and use a trash can or any other container to catch the loose paint chips as they may fall on the floor or fly away in the air, getting into your eyes.

7- Fill in the Dents and Cracks To Repair Drywall

Any dents, cracks, patches, or areas that are not smooth will need to be addressed.

A good putty will do the job along with a scraper to ensure that it becomes even with the rest of the wall.

Once you get the putty ready, it’s pretty simple to apply and smooth into place.

Now you are ready to let the putty dry and apply the primer. Remember, the more coats of paint primer you add; the longer and stronger the paint will be.

Of course, you don’t want to overdo it but apply enough primer to ensure that it thoroughly covers the drywall and then at least two coats of paint on top.

If the wall is subject to somewhat harsher conditions, such as sunlight, for example, you’ll want to use a paint that offers UV protection and perhaps apply another coat just to be safe.

Will Paint Hide the Drywall Imperfections?

Dents, scratches, nail holes, and bubbles are common in old sheetrock, which develops over time due to a number of reasons.

In general, if it’s a minor imperfection, you can easily get them fixed by getting a repaint done yourself.

You can use a paint roller to apply a skim coat of joint compound – to hide these minor flaws.

But if the dents or scratches are major, they need to be fixed at a professional level. This means you need to hire a contractor near you who is experienced enough and reliable.

They have the right tools and products that can help in hiding the annoying lumps and bumps that are really an eyesore.

painter fixing peeling drywall

What Kind of Paint is Best to Use for Drywall?

Well, this can be a tricky question, and the answer may depend on your personal requirements and the budget you have.

If you do not have a higher budget, you can simply go with standard latex or acrylic-based paint.

However, if you are more concerned about appearance and durability, you may have to be prepared to invest a bit extra.

For instance, if you want to paint drywall to look like wood or like concrete or with some exciting textures, it’s essential that you choose the type of paint formula that has a high-gloss or semi-gloss finish.

If you are worried about the mildew and stains caused, the specialty paint should be designed perfectly to resist the mildews and bacteria.

In that case, you need to make sure that the drywall paint you are picking contains special pigments and additives in it, which make them waterproof and washable.

It should also resist humid conditions, which means it should not absorb moisture as readily as other paint types.

Some of these specialty paints can also have fire retardant properties and anti-condensation additives which makes them ideal for locations like kitchen drywall.

All these qualities will help you find premium drywall paint (like Kilz) that is good enough to prevent it from peeling and flaking in the future.

Questions You Should Ask Yourself Before Painting

Painting and fixing torn drywall paper isn’t easy.

Also, it can be time-consuming if you do not know the proper process and steps.

This is especially true if it’s old drywall that is already painted (or has a peeled paint) and needs a refinish.

So, before you start with a DIY process of refinishing your drywall (whether in a bedroom, living room, or bathroom), it’s good to ask a few questions yourself.

Getting the answers to these may help you proceed in the right direction with the rightful strategies.

What Is Flaking Paint?

Flaking paint is a topcoat paint film detached from the primer and underlying surface to form the flakes or scales.

In its early stage, it may appear to be a fine hairline crack, but if not fixed, it may worsen over time, forming the larger pieces of paint to peel or chip off.

Primer and paint will generally not last for long if you apply them over peeled drywall.

It’s crucial that you fix the cracks and peels on your drywall before you add any kind of texture, prime, and paint.

Why Should I Repaint My Drywall?

The need to repaint your drywall may arise due to several reasons.

Of course, the first and the most obvious one is the old peeling paint with exposed gypsum, which you need to fix as soon as possible.

The peeling of the paint around the corners is usually due to high humidity and water leakages, especially in areas like bathroom walls and ceilings.

Not only does it look unpleasant in your beautiful bathroom but also, it’s a breeding ground for molds and bacteria.

Peeling paint appearing on an interior wall can also be due to an improperly prepared surface, regular wear and tear, or moisture seeping slowly through the walls with time.

Exterior walls may show signs of flaking paint due to extreme weather conditions like harsh UV rays, high temperature, moisture, rainfall, etc.

It’s important to fix all this chipping paint as soon as possible to avoid getting it worse.

Should I Hire a Drywall Paint Contractor?

As pointed out before, repairing and sealing the drywall (when there is peeling paint on it) can be tiring and time-consuming.

Also, if you want to get it refinished so that the paint lasts longer, you will need a professional touch.

Hiring a contractor is, therefore, important if you don’t want your paint to get peeled again sooner.

As a precautionary piece of advice, if your home was built anywhere around 1979 or before, there may be a possibility of lead-based paint on your walls.

To handle them carefully, you will again need the help of a professional contractor.

Hiring a contractor is the best viable option while repairing and repainting your old drywall. Do not neglect it just to save a few bucks on an overall renovation cost.

How Often Should You Get Your Drywalls Repainted?

To avoid the peeling paint and to maintain the shine of your interior walls, you should consider getting them repainted every 3-5 years.

Depending on your family’s lifestyle and activities, you may get them repainted more often, keeping walls from looking dull and dark.

After you are done, make sure that you protect your painted wall surfaces from high heat, sunlight, moisture, condensation, and water.

In the end,

You can easily give your simple drywall a great refinish with a wide variety of styles and textures.

Repainting drywall the same color takes less time and effort in terms of what needs to be accomplished.

But there are still preparations that you have to make. This is especially true if you plan to repaint a wall that has peeling paint.

Just follow the steps, take your time, and work on doing it right instead of trying to complete the task quickly.

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