house painting Sydney - polyurethane

Removing Polyurethane

Remove Polyurethane

Renovations and House painting Sydney
Polyurethane is used to protect floors, furniture or other wooden surfaces. Occasionally we need to remove it if we are to re-stain/re-finish the wooden surface, or if the polyurethane is simply getting too old.
Of course polyurethane is a little difficult to remove, specifically because it is meant to protect the floor. So a few strong chemicals and methods are required.
Polyurethane and the chemicals used to remove it are quite harsh on skin and can make breathing difficult. In fact the removal chemicals are toxic in large doses. So good room ventilation (open doors and windows) with breathing masks and protective gloves are necessary.
1. Wear old clothes or overalls that cover the whole body. And use glove and a breathing mask.
2. Use a paint stripper to remove the polyurethane. Water based paint strippers will produce lower fumes, but they take longer to work.

3. Apply the paint stripper with a cheap or old paintbrush; you will probably throw this out afterward. Do a small section of the floor, perhaps 2 feet square. Cover it thickly with the stripper and be sure to fill in any cracks or tight spaces.
4. Leave the stripper to work for about 10 minutes; check the instruction on the product for exact times. Once the polyurethane starts to wrinkle you know it is working.

5. Scrape off the polyurethane with a metal paint scrapper. Scrap in the direction of the woodgrain. Dispose of the scrapping in an old disposable container.
6. Use a wire brush to remove any further polyurethane. Also move this in the direction of the grain.
7. Wash the paint stripper away with a wet rag. Often the rag can just use water, but sometimes ethanol or mineral spirits is required. It depends on the type of paint stripper.
8. Use 150 grit sandpaper or steel wool to smooth out the timber. You can use an electric sander if it is designed to leave a flat surface.
9. Move on to the next area of the floor.

House Painting Sydney

Large scale projects take considerable time to complete. Painting your entire home takes considerable time. Consider the benefits of professional painters for you home, and be guaranteed a great result.


Garage floors Painting house painting sydney

Garage Floors Painting

Garage Floors Painting Sydney

A concrete garage floor can look great and be protected from damage with the right type of finish. Rock solid floor finishes specifically designed for garage floors are available from hardware and automotive stores. These are pricy, but if applied correctly thy will last for years.

There is a choice of colours with the floor coatings. Clear, grey or sand colour are the most common options.

The coating should come as part of a kit that includes some etching compound.

  1. Use a degreaser to clean the concrete of any oil spills on the garage floor.
  2. Wet the entire surface of the floor.
  3. Mix the concrete etch with water than use this with a stiff-bristle brush to scrub the floor.
  4. Pre-Prepare the pouch of floor finish by shaking it and rolling it on the ground.
  5. The pouch will have two sealed sections. The internal seal will need to be broken so the two components can be mixed together. Mix these by squeezing from the edges to the centre. This actives the flooring compound.
  6. Cut off the corner of the pouch and squeeze out a line of compound on the floor. The line should be about 6 cm wide and I meter long. Start this first line at the wall furthest away from the door.
  7. Use a brush to cover a little over 1 meter of the floor with this compound. Brush it up against the bas of the wall.
  8. Smooth out the covered area with a roller, using a ‘W’ pattern.
  9. Repeat this procedure, making sure to overlap each section.
  10. Work back towards the door, making sure that the whole floor is covered right up to the door’s edge.

The floor should be left for 24 hours. Then it is safe to walk on, or for parking the car.

House Painting Sydney

Garage floors and other DIY projects can be done over a weekend. These type of home project can be very fulfilling. But painting an entire house, or even just all the interior walls, is a large project, being both labour intensive and time consuming. Don’t spend your time renovating your home when you can enjoy the benefits of a professional paint job instead. Have your home professionally painted, then spend your time on things that are more important.

Rustic Style and Aged Paint

Furniture and internal House Painting Sydney

The rustic look is popular with some people. This is a décor that favours open woodgrain and aged furnishings. Furniture with aged paint works well in this sort of surrounding. It is possible to reproduce the look of aged paint with a few painting techniques. This can be used for making newer furniture look old, but is more common used for restoring older furniture and giving it an appropriate rustic appearance. These techniques can also be applied to walls, though rustic style rooms tend to only paint one or maybe two of the walls.

If you are going to restore a wall or some furniture to an ‘aged distressed’ look than choose colours that will suit the room. Warm colours are usually fine, as are earthy colours like brown or grey. Light, almost faded colours also work well. Just avoid anything too bright or vivid. Chalk paint is one of many good options.

Aged furniture will not have an even, smooth finish. The look of aged paint is unevenness, but unevenness that looks deliberate and coordinated. Two overlapping layers of paint, with the top layer partially incomplete, is the classic way to achieve this. The top layer should be a darker version of the base layer, so the paint looks like it has faded in the sunlight. Choose the appropriate colour shades in advance.

  • Prepare the surface by sanding the wood, or cleaning with sugar soap to remove any grease. Wait till the surface is completely dry.
  • Apply the lighter shade of paint first. This is one time where you do not have to be too fussy about neatness. As long as you cover the whole surface including all edges and walls.
  • When the lighter base layer of paint is dry you can add the darker shade of paint. Do this with a flat paintbrush is a criss-cross pattern.
  • When the paint is still damp use a muslin cloth to dab off the darker paint, and blur the surface. Some people like to remove more paint form the edges or anywhere that should be exposed to more wear.
  • When the paint is dry it will have a pleasantly uneven ‘worn’ look.

House Painters Sydney

Some home DIY projects are a good hobby. Restoring some furniture can be satisfying. But it takes a long time to repaint and entire home. Have the main painting done be professionals, and enjoy adding the décor details yourself.

Secrets of the Professional Painters

Best house painting Sydney

The internal walls of your house will get the best possible paint job if you know a few tricks. Many of these are fairly straight forward, but they do require some consistent effort. Yet they are very effective.

  • Sand away flaws. Some restoration work requires more sanding than painting. But the sanding removes ridges, filler marks and other abnormalities that pain will never hide.
  • Completely de-grease the walls so that the paint bonds well.
  • Use a really good brush. Soft bristles will leave a smoother finish.
  • Move furniture out or cover it with plastic sheeting.
  • Use a tinted primer. If the primer is a similar colour to the final paint the result will look better, and you will only need one coat of colour.
  • Always use primer over any filler in the wall. The filler used for joints and gaps has a different texture to the gyprock, and this will show through the final paint. Primer will provide a much neater finish.
  • Use tape for neat edges, and press it into place with a putty knife.
  • Use paint conditioner to get a smoother finish in non-oil based paints. Floetrol is one common brand of paint conditioner.
  • The joint between textured surfaces (like cement) and smooth walls is an issue; it has traditionally been hard to get a neat, straight joint line; the brush will not run smoothly in the line against the textured surface.
    Use a screwdriver to remove the rough surface neat the line. The paint joint will be smoother.
  • Canvas drop cloths are the best option. You do not have to cover the whole floor, just the area where you are painting.
  • Do one wall at a time. Do the edges, then use a roller on the main surface.
  • If you need to paint a large area the mix several paint tins together. This will remove the colour difference between different tins.
  • Wash any paint rollers, to remove any loose material.
  • Remove light switches and electrical sockets.

House painters Sydney

Professional painting gives the best results for your home. It’s worth hiring the professional painters.

House Painting Sydney

You’ve Decided to Hire a Painting Contractor. Now What?

Some home improvement projects require the work of a professional. There are only a few home owners I can think of who are capable of pouring a foundation, install their own HVAC, or building an additional room. However, other home projects, as painting just seem to be asking to be a do-it-yourself project. After all, every one is capable of holding a brush and dabbing into paint, and applying it on a surface, right? Many times that’s wrong.

However, painting is more difficult than it seems. So, it’s with great pleasure that many DIY home painters decide that it’s now time to employ a painting contractor to take on the job. Let’s check what painting contractors do, how do we hire ‘em, and how do we negotiate for the best price possible for the painting job you need.

The Old Rag with Depth

The Old Rag with Depth


Internal House Painting Sydney

Many interior walls use plain matt colours. The room décor is created by the combination of these wall colours with the floor, ceiling and any furnishings. Wall paint is usually the plainest element, but there are some exceptions.

There are painting methods that give the walls a specific texture. Rag painting is one widely used technique that gives a wall a well –ordered illusion of depth. This can be done boldly or subtly, with warm colours or bright décor.

Rag painting uses a cloth or textured roller (rag roller) to add a second layer of paint that is a different colour to the first.  This semi-random second layer of paint allows the first layer of paint to partially show through.

Textured rollers can be found in many patterns. Most patterns are random, some are semi-random like woodgrain or stone. A rag will give a different pattern depending on how it is used. It is important to make sure that the pattern is consistent across the wall.

A key point to a successful rag painting is getting the colours right. Rich brown with gold texture is one option. Many people choose to use a dark and pastel tint of the same colour.


Strata painting Sydney

Often apartments lack the room space of larger homes. But we can add the feeling of more space with good décor and the right paint colours. Rag technique can give the walls of a small apartment room the illusion of depth.

Clever hidden storage ideas can also create some real space in small rooms.


House painters Sydney

Talk to the professionals and find the right look for the home. There are always a few ideas that you never through of. We have the experience to find a paint scheme that will appeal to you.

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Fixing Some Paint Problems

Fixing Some Paint Problems


Common Problems with Internal house painting Sydney

It takes considerable skill to achieve a neat paint job. There are potential problems with paint on a flat surface because even slight imperfections are easy to see under these conditions. And there are potential problems in painting edges and small details because such tiny areas are difficult to get right. Any mistakes on paintwork can ruin the overall effect.


Missed spots

It can be all too easy to miss a spot painting. Sometimes the lighting, shadows or bright reflections, prevent us from noticing a missed spot. Else, the wet paint doesn’t show the missed spot which becomes all too apparent when the paint dries. This is common when giving a second coat of the same colour.

Remedy – when the paint has dried the missed spots can be filled in with some fresh paint on a small brush. Do not do the while the paint is still wet because the new paint will mess up the surrounding area.

Paint Runs

A common problems with thin or thick paint. If the paint drips the result look dreadful. Good paint technique will prevent this, but paint runs are common on first attempts.

Remedy- if you find there has been a paint run despite your best efforts then you can remove it with fine sandpaper when the paint has dried. Then retouch the area with some fresh paint and a fine brush.

Roller Marks

Rollers are great for getting a smooth paint finish over large areas. But if the joint between the roller marks show then the effect is ruined.

A good quality roller, without seams, and good quality paint will greatly reduce this issue. As always, good painting technique makes all the difference.

Use a roller with a thin nap (the cloth covering that holds the paint) if you want a smooth surface. ¼ inch is good. Matt paint can be applied with a thicker nap.


The walls will meet the ceiling and floor at the skirting board. The paint should end in a nice neat line where the wall meets the edge of the skirting board. This cannot be done with a roller, which is too large for such fine work.

Experienced painters will ‘cut in’ the paint at the wall edges with a medium/small brush. Often this is done before the roller painting.

Alternatively, the edges can be prepared with tape, which protects the adjacent edge from being painted. Then the edges can be painted with a brush.


House painters Sydney

Professionals can achieve great painting results in minimal time. Avoid disruption to your routine and have the house or office painting done by professionals.

Internal Doors

Internal Door House Painting Sydney

Doors are subject to constant use, far more than bare wall surfaces. So we should paint a door to withstand regular use and constant human contact.

A semi-gloss of gloss paint finish on a door is not uncommon. This withstands stains and grease marks better than older matte paints, means that fingerprints are easy to clean off. But modern eggshell finish paint is another possibility because it is also fairly stain resistant.

If the door is being repainted it will need to be cleaned with sugar soap. If the earlier paint is glossy then the surface will need to be slightly roughened. In both cases this is necessary for the new paint to bond to the surface.

It is an advantage to leave doors on their frames, because this allows both sides of the door to be painted in one session. It is a simple matter to slide a protective sheet under the door to protect the floor.

Some doors have raises surfaces, rather like the frame of a painting, or raised panels. These may be painted a different colour to the rest of the door. A brush will be necessary for this type of painting.

If the door has a completely flat surface then it can be painted with a roller. A smaller sized roller is often better for this, perhaps 15cm in width. If you use gloss paint than you will need a roller with a thick nap (the spongy surface of the roller) as this gives a considerably smoother finish.

House Painters Sydney

Small scale projects are fine for DIY enthusiasts. But professional painters will repaint your home or office in minimal time, so you can enjoy the results without effort.

house painting after

Dust and Paint

Dust and house painting Sydney

Dust can be a problem when painting. If there is dust in the air then it can settle on fresh paint, and ruin the finished surface. This is a bigger problem with horizontal surfaces than vertical walls. It is also a bigger problem with slow drying paint; the longer the drying time the great the amount of dust that will settle. Removing the dust form the air will almost always benefits, and never disadvantage any painting.

Reducing dust:

  • Vacuum all floors and surfaces in any room before painting. This is especially important for ceilings. Make sure the vacuum is not releasing the dust back into the room.
  • Vacuum flyscreens and blinds, or remove these before painting.
  • Clean any fans, especially ceiling fans, in the room. These harbour dust.
  • Cover any bookshelves or furniture which will harbour dust. Anything with small and uneven surfaces (knickknacks, shelves …etc.) are an issue.
  • Cover the floor, especially carpeted floors, with groundsheets.
  • Use a fan to blow air out of the room when painting. This also helps dispel fumes.
  • An air filter will remove a great deal of dust; Use this the night before painting.
  • If possible then raise the humidity of the room. A dry room harbours more dust. More water content in the air means less floating dust.

House painters Sydney

Modern paints that are water based and fast drying will have less issue with accumulating dust. When a painting job is done professionally there should be no issue with dust getting stuck on paint.

Smoother Finish Paint.

House Painting Sydney

Most internal wall painting uses matt or eggshell paint. Of course this needs to be skilfully applied, but it does not require a silky smooth finish as this paint is designed to be pleasantly rough.  Occasionally, however, there is a paint job that requires a super smooth finish, using glossy paint to achieve a mirror surface. There are techniques that can get the best smooth results from gloss paint.

Glossy smooth paint can work well on trim, window sills, doors, doorframes, some furniture, some bookshelves, some musical instruments like pianos, some cabinets, ornaments, chests, frames, and some knickknacks.

Smooth Finish

  • Prep and sand any wooden surface. 120 grit sanding paper is optimal. If the sand paper is too fine the paint/primer will not bond well.
  • Use a primer. And once it is fully dry you should sand it super smooth. 220 grit sanding, which is finer than the 120 grit used on the wood, is good for sanding primer.
  • Remove all trace of dust from sanding with a vacuum cleaner.
  • Slow drying paint is better for a smooth finish; it will not dry so quickly as to leave brush marks. It helps to slightly thin paint out with turps, or to use additive products like Floetrol or Penetrol.
  • High quality paint will give better results, or it has the potential to be better if applied skilfully. Find the right product, buy in the right amount so you don’t waste money on half a can of paint that never gets used.
  • Stain the paint. This gets rid of a gunk.
  • Put the paint on and leave it to dry. Don’t try to smooth out any surface once it has started to dry, you will ruin smooth finish and end up leaving brush marks.
  • A layer of clear gloss can make all the difference, but this will not work on paint that is already glossy. Clear gloss works well on a slightly matt or slightly rough surface. The best clear gloss results can be achieved with spray can painting.

House Painters Sydney

Talk to painting experts about the right colours scheme and the right paint for your home.

Removing Paint from Windows

House Painters Sydney

Painters should prepare the room they paint with groundsheets and masking tape. Amongst other things the windows should be protected, so they do not suffer any paint accidents.

However, paint does occasionally get on windows. This is easy to clean off if the paint has not dried. Often it can be wiped away, perhaps with the aid of thinner for oil paint or water for water based paints. Occasionally paint will dry out on glass before it can be cleaned off. This is a nuisance, but it can be dealt with.

Cleaning dried paint off windows:

  1. Wet the window with warm soapy water. This will soften the paint. You may need to reapply the soapy water several times.
  2. Use a razor blade or paint scrapper to scrap off the paint. Angle the edge of the blade / scraper at 45 degrees to the window above the paint and scrape downwards.
    a sharper edge works best here.
  3. If the paint comes off easily then clean the window with glass cleaner.
  4. For stubborn paint, try stronger solvents. Rubbing alcohol will work for acrylic paints. Acetone will remove enamel paint.
    Make sure the area is well ventilated, and avoid inhaling these fumes.

Some people find that a hair drier will heat and soften paint so that it is easier to scrape off. But this heating method is not recommended for windows that have UV film; the heat can damage the film.

house painting sydney

Chalk Paint

Furnishings and House painting Sydney

Many homeowners like to paint a few furnishings for a DIY projects. Small paint projects can be enjoyable. Chairs, a table, bookshelves, some children’s play equipment. These projects are best kept small as long term project take considerable time to give any sense of satisfaction.

A rustic look, deliberately made to look old fashioned and worn, is popular. This can be achieved by distressing the paint, by sanding part of the surface. Or simply by using faded colours.

Another option is caulk paint. This mixes calcium additive with the paint, giving a smooth powdery feel. It is literally like caulk. This is an excellent option for furniture projects. It is especially effective with pastel colours, though dark colours can also be very appealing.

Caulk pain is available commercially, or it can be made by modifying latex paint.

To make caulk paint: Mix

  • 2 tablespoons of plaster of Paris
  • 1 tablespoon of water
  • I cup of latex paint.

Clean and lightly sand the wooden surface before painting. Sometimes is it best to use a primer first.

House Painters Sydney

We recommend getting the professions in for interior and exterior home painting. It takes considerable time to paint a house, and that time is better spent on other aspects of your life. Enjoy some painting projects as a hobby, and have you home keep in optimal condition with a professional paint job.