In a previous post, I explored how to keep your carpets clean of drywall dust during small DIY projects, such as replacing a curtain rod or towel rack.
Today, I want to talk about one of the most terrifying topics in all of DIY, painting a room. Okay, I admit, terrifying might be a bit of an over exaggeration. After all, painting typically doesn’t involve sharp spinning blades or torches that can inflict bodily harm. And unless you do something very, very wrong, it is unlikely a painting project will involve busted plumbing pipes. However, I’m willing to bet more than one relationship has been put to the limits when a ‘completed’ project is followed by the phrase “are you sure that’s the color I picked out?”
Color picking aside, painting does present a risk to your carpet and upholstery so let’s talk about preventing and treating painting-related problems.
#1 Put down a barrier
Covering your carpets to protect them is a straightforward first step but it seems that everyone has an opinion about what is best so let’s walk through two basic options:
- Canvas drop cloths: They are reusable and absorb paint spatter, so you don’t track it around. Also, the rough texture makes them less prone to sliding around on carpet (but watch hardwood). The downside is that they aren’t completely waterproof, so you do need to be careful that big spills don’t soak through. Also, they tend to be bulky which makes storing them more difficult.
- Plastic tarps and rolls of sheet plastic: These are reusable, inexpensive, waterproof, and fold up more compactly than canvas. However, since they don’t absorb any of the paint, it’s easy to step in wet spots and then track the paint around. You also need to take extra precautions to secure them to the floor. Since they are slippery, they tend to not only slide out of place but can be treacherous to walk on.
Luckily, this isn’t an either/or decision as those basic options have spawned hybrids such as specialty drop cloths with an absorbent top and a leak-resistant poly backing or a canvas backed with PVC dots to resist sliding. The key point is to use something to help protect your carpets. As the old saying goes, an once of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
#2 Move and/or cover your furniture
If your couch sits up against a wall, you are going to have to move it anyway, but don’t just move it enough to slip behind it. Consider moving everything to the center of the room and covering it. Lightweight plastic sheeting is inexpensive and comes in a wide variety of sizes, making it perfect to protect your upholstery from paint drips and accidental brushes with rollers on extensions poles.
And speaking of rollers, don’t be tempted to rush the job. A paint roller is great for quickly moving paint, but if you spin it too quickly, it will throw tiny drops of paint in all directions. (A friend of mine learned this lesson the hard way when painting his ceiling!)
#4 Prevent ‘oops’ moments
There’s a saying that goes something like “nothing in the world is friendlier than a wet/dirty dog.” Now picture that scene after your 4-legged friend has stepped in paint! Of course, furry friends aren’t the only ones that find it easy to step in a paint tray. Consider keeping paint trays elevated on a portable workbench and, if need be, blocking pets from the room. Some DIYers also prefer to paint in either socks or bare feet so they can feel when they step in paint. And, always remember to check your clothes and skin for wet paint before sitting down.
#5 Clean up
Despite your best efforts, you may still end up with paint on your carpet. If you catch an accident immediately, grab the towels from your carpet cleaning toolkit and see this article for dealing with wet paint on carpet. If the paint has dried, try these tips for dry paint on carpet or reach out to me talk about carpet repair.
Hopefully, these tips will help protect your carpets, and you will only need to reach out to me for your regular carpet and upholstery cleaning! As always, we use the hot water extraction method recommended by top carpet manufacturers. Our commitment to service, state-of-the-art equipment, environmentally safe supplies, and A+ BBB Rating mean you can trust Extra Effort Carpet & Upholstery Cleaning to deliver superior results.
Questions? I am always available to answer your stain removal questions and concerns. Call us today at (513) 777-8770 to learn more about our carpet and upholstery cleaning services. Or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn about this month’s cleaning special.
Elliott S. Fishman, Co-Owner
Extra Effort Carpet & Upholstery Cleaning, Inc.
About Elliott S. Fishman
Elliott Fishman, along with his son Brian, is the owner and operator of Extra Effort Carpet & Upholstery Cleaning, Inc. We serve the residents and businesses of Greater Cincinnati to include West Chester, Mason, Maineville, Loveland, Wyoming, Fairfield, Indian Hill, Montgomery, Hyde Park and Anderson Township. Elliott started this company in 1984, based on the belief that it takes Extra Effort to make each job a success. The father/son team puts the extra time, extra care, and extra effort go into every task they undertake – no matter how large or small the job. Extra Effort’s quality equipment, trained technicians and safe products have made the company a top choice for residential and commercial carpet cleaning, upholstery cleaning, water damage / water extraction, fabric protection, odor control and spot removal.