When it comes to painting that can be rolled onto the surface, dry fall paint is probably not the first that comes to mind.
While it is mostly sprayed, the fact is if you have a ceiling (or a wall) that you would like to repaint, you can apply dry fall paint by using a roller to get great results. But there’s a trick involved when you want to use a roller or a brush to apply dry fall paint. Otherwise, it will be inefficient and difficult.
Before we come to those tricks and steps to use this type of paint, let’s understand what is dry fall paint first.
Dry Fall Paint
Dry fall (also called drop dry paint, dry fog, or spray-safe coatings) is a type of fast-drying paint that contains additives to give them the property to dry quickly. These additives cause the droplets to solidify upon landing by making them fall in a specific manner.
Since this paint dries quickly, reducing the damage caused by excess paint, it is the perfect solution for issues caused by over spraying. The remaining paint on the surface can be easily wiped or swept away, making your work less messy and easier to manage.
You’ll find this type of paint coating mostly used for ceilings, thanks to its low-drip potential. But it can also be found on walls, most notably in warehouses, commercial structures, condominiums, and industrial settings.
There are different types of dry fall paint, including acrylic, alkyd, latex, and the like. Based on the conditions and surface requirements, you can spread these paints on different materials, including aluminum, gypsum, steel, and wood.
While the primary use of dry fall paint is to be sprayed onto a surface where it will dry quickly, is it possible to use it with a roller or a brush? Let’s have a look…
Rolling the Dry Fall Paint
Technically, dry fall paints are usually meant to be sprayed and not laid onto a surface with a brush or roller. But you can roll dry fall paint onto a surface if you apply at least one coat by using a sprayer first.
You may wonder why not just roll the paint straight away. Well, the answer is that rolling the paint may not reach all the places you want. Spraying will ensure that the dry fall paint covers the entire area adequately before it can be rolled.
By spraying on the first layer or coat, you will make the surface smoother so that the second layer can be added. This will help ensure that the second layer will stick and that you get the effect that you desire.
So, once you cover the surface by spraying, you can break out the roller and finish the job. But how can you apply the dry fall paint by using a spray and roller combination? Let’s have a look further…
Applying the Dry Fall Paint Step By Step
It does take a series of steps to first spray, then apply the dry fall paint with a roller. You may decide to simply spray the paint if that is the effect you desire.
However, rolling the second and third coats will create a different effect.
1- Tape & Cover:
The first step is to use painter’s tape to cover the areas you do not want to touch with the dry fall paint. This also means that you should cover the entire floor with a drop cloth.
Although the paint itself will probably dry before reaching the floor, it will save on clean-up after you are finished.
Unless the surface is new, it is best to clean the surface with a pressure wash. This will remove any dust, dirt, or debris that may be present. A new surface will not need to be cleaned.
You may also consider sanding the surface, especially if you have a sanding machine or grinder to get rid of any imperfections that would survive a brush or wash. Make sure you remove the dust the sander generates before you begin to paint.
4- Wood & Iron Surfaces:
Next, use a primer if you are going to apply dry fall paint to a wood or iron surface. It is possible that you may only need to spot-touch an iron surface, depending on its condition. But in either case, a primer will help ensure that the paint sticks to the surface in a secure fashion.
Now you are ready to spray on the first coat of dry fall paint. Make one more check of the surface condition before you begin.
Next, use smooth movements at the appropriate distance when applying the first coat of paint. This will make it an even coat that will be more suitable for using the roller. Cover the entire surface and leave no areas untouched that you want to be painted.
6- Roll the Second Coat:
Once the first coat of paint is dry, you can now roll the second coat onto the surface. Roll evenly to ensure a smooth result.
Once you finish, you can see if a third coat is needed. At this point, you can add caulk to the paint if you desire. That is up to you, so be sure to plan before applying the caulk.
Can You Apply Dry Fall Paint on Galvanized Metal Surface?
If you are painting galvanized metal, you should use either a two-component epoxy solution or acrylic paint. And when painting, you should never backroll for the best results.
Using a roller for the second coat of dry fall paint is easy enough to accomplish if you spray on the first coat.
Remember that if you paint on galvanized metal, you should avoid alkyd dry fall paint because it will cause saponification if you do use this type of paint.
Saponification is a chemical reaction that creates zinc soap. The result is that the paint will detach from the surface, a process known as delamination.
The Bottom Line
Dry fall paint is a versatile product that works on ceilings, warehouse walls, condominium walls, and even garage floors.
If you want to paint with dry fall coating, the most effective way is through spray painting. This can give a variety of advantages over traditional brushing and rolling methods – but don’t shy away from trying it with other tools if you want.
Calling a professional painter is recommended if you do not have the time to learn the technique or don’t want to risk any mistakes.
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Jack Luis is a semi-retired painter who loved painting his clients’ ideas on their walls.
He had worked as a painter for over a decade serving customers in areas such as Charleston, Mount Pleasant, Beaufort, and Georgetown, SC (South Carolina). Today in his free time, he likes to read and write about the newer techniques implemented in his profession. You may read more about him here or get in touch with him here.