How to spray paint trim

Trim painting is among the most common painting tasks that homeowners undertake, right along with walls and cabinets.

Painting your trim can completely change the look and feel of a room, it can brighten the space or make it more elegant.

spray paint trims

Trim work is probably one of the most frustrating parts of the painting. Stain can bleed through and ruin your finish, but it doesn’t have to.

I’ve painted a lot of trim over plenty of years. I’ve brushed out trim in homes, I’ve sprayed trim and I’ve painted the trim in countless new construction homes.

I have a lot of advice that will not only make your trim look amazing when completed, but will speed up your painting process and give you a finished product that will last for decades.

How to spray paint trim?

Prepare the room

Preparing your room before painting the trim will save you time and effort, as well as improve the overall quality of your paint job.

If you are planning to repaint your house and are looking for a good paint job, it is advisable that you read the instructions that come with the paint cans before you start to paint.

Clean the trim

Cleaning trim before painting is crucial because only fresh paint sticks to fresh paint.

So unless you want your paint job to look spotty, you will want to clean the trim before painting.

This process is really quite simple, but not a lot of people are aware of it.

It is such a basic step in the painting process that you can probably do it without even needing to read this article.

If the room is a kitchen and grease has built up over the years, then warm soapy water should be used to hand wash all the trim.

All one needs do is spend 10 minutes or so washing the greasy copious amounts of mail addressed with Stencils and stickers off of your household surfaces that will be painted.

Fill holes and fix trim

Filling the smallest of holes and cracks before you paint your trim will take away any fakeness in the finished project and make it look much more professional.

Professional painters use spackle for this purpose.

But if you’re doing a small repair job like painting your walls on your own, you can use pretty much anything that is similar to spackle.

For example, if you are painting anything that is not made out of wood (ex: walls, plastic) then I suggest going with a foam-based filler.

Instead, they do not shrink while baking and create less mess than regular caulk when sanding down.

This step should take no longer than 10 minutes or so to complete but it’s important to really get into all the holes.

And around outlets and whatnot to avoid having to paint over these areas.

Don’t forget about fixing those gaps between the wall and trim boards — these will show everything else more easily if they aren’t filled properly.

paint trims

Sand the trim

Sanding before painting is probably one of the most beneficial and necessary steps. It removes imperfections and prepares the surface for painting.

You need to choose the correct sandpaper to get the job done.

It should be of medium grade – it will be rough enough to take off the imperfections, but smooth enough to not scratch the surface.

To sand, the trim, start by wiping off any loose particles or dust with a damp cloth.

You can also lightly brush the surface with a soft bristled paintbrush. If the trim is varnished, you need to be careful not to remove too much of the varnish.

Use fine-grain sandpaper, it will be easier to control than a coarse one that might clog and tear the surface.

Feather the edges of the area you’re sanding and go slowly to avoid missing any spots. Before you start painting, use a tack cloth to pick off any loose particles.

Always remember to test on an inconspicuous spot before you start working.

Prime the surface

Prime the trim before painting it and you will get a much better finish.

Here’s how: Use an atomizer to spray the trim with a primer, which will add a protective layer and a base paint color.

Let the primer dry and continue painting. Be sure to prime each area of the trim you will be painting so it doesn’t show through the final coat of paint.

Priming the trim will ensure that no bleed-through occurs.

Start spraying

Select the spray tip for your project. Remember, the size of the hole does not exceed what the sprayer can handle.

If multiple paint cans have been used, mix them together in an empty 5-gallon bucket to make sure consistency is kept even if slight differences happen between the cans you are using.

Select less powerful air pressure if you do not want over-spray and are working on stains. A finer finish will be achieved with less powerful pressure.

Spray the trim in long, even strokes. Keep the tip a light distance away from what you’re spraying, not too far and not too close.

It’s best to paint the inside walls of your home last because you want to keep as much paint off of them as possible.

If anything spills onto them it will be seen more easily than on white wall trim and so cleaning up any mistakes made when painting trim will be easier!

The next time you are painting trim, try doing it before the interior walls- this way if there is any spillage, it can be cleaned up immediately and won’t soak into the colored wall paint.

Can I paint trim with spray paint?

Yes, you can paint trim with spray paint. However, it is important to properly prepare the surface by cleaning it and masking off any areas that you do not want to be painted.

Additionally, it is recommended to use a paint specifically formulated for use on trim.

Such as paint and primer in one, and apply multiple thin coats rather than one thick coat to prevent drips and runs.

What is the trick to painting trim?

There are a few tricks to painting trim that can help you achieve a professional-looking finish:

  • Proper Surface Preparation: Clean the surface of the trim with a degreaser or TSP (trisodium phosphate) to remove any dirt, grime, or grease. Sand the surface lightly to create a smooth surface for the paint to adhere to.
  • Masking: Mask off any areas that you do not want to paint, such as walls, floors, or hardware. Use painter’s tape and plastic sheeting to protect these areas.
  • Use the Right Paint: Use a paint specifically formulated for use on trim, such as a paint and primer in one. This will help ensure that the paint adheres well to the surface and provides a long-lasting finish.
  • Use a High-Quality Brush: Use a high-quality brush that is specifically designed for use with oil-based or water-based paint. This will help ensure that the paint is applied smoothly and evenly.
  • Apply Thin Coats: Apply multiple thin coats of paint rather than one thick coat. This will help prevent drips and runs and will allow the paint to dry more evenly.
  • Sand between Coats: Sand lightly between coats to ensure a smooth finish.
  • Be patient: Allow the paint to dry completely before applying additional coats or replacing hardware.

By following these tricks, you can achieve a professional-looking finish when painting trim.

How do you spray paint car trim?

Spray painting car trim is similar to painting other types of trim, but there are a few additional steps to keep in mind. Here is the process:

  1. Remove the trim: Carefully remove the trim from the car, taking note of any clips or fasteners that may need to be removed.
  2. Clean the trim: Clean the trim thoroughly with a degreaser or TSP (trisodium phosphate) to remove any dirt, grime, or grease. Sand the surface lightly to create a smooth surface for the paint to adhere to.
  3. Mask off the surrounding area: Use painter’s tape and plastic sheeting to mask off any areas that you do not want to paint, such as the car’s body or windows.
  4. Use a paint specifically formulated for use on car trim: Use a paint specifically formulated for use on car trim, such as a paint and primer in one. This will help ensure that the paint adheres well to the surface and provides a long-lasting finish.
  5. Apply the paint: Apply the paint using high-quality spray paint, holding the can 8-10 inches away from the surface and using a sweeping motion. Apply multiple thin coats, allowing the paint to dry completely between coats.
  6. Reinstall the trim: Carefully reinstall the trim onto the car, making sure that all clips and fasteners are securely in place.
  7. Allow the paint to dry completely: Allow the paint to dry completely before driving the car or exposing it to the elements.

It’s always recommended to test the paint in a small inconspicuous area before committing to the whole project, to ensure that the paint will adhere properly and will match the color of the car.

How do you spray paint car trim?

To spray paint car trim, you will need the following materials:

  • automotive spray paint specifically designed for plastic and trim
  • masking tape or painter’s tape
  • newspaper or drop cloths
  • a clean, dry surface to work on
  • a clean, dry cloth or rag
  • a plastic or rubber trim restorer (optional)

Here are the basic steps for spray painting car trim:

  1. Clean the trim: Use a clean, dry cloth or rag to wipe down the trim, removing any dirt or debris. If the trim is particularly faded or discolored, you may want to use a plastic or rubber trim restorer to clean and prepare the surface.
  2. Mask off the surrounding area: Use masking tape or painter’s tape to cover any areas of the car that you do not want to paint, such as the windows or body of the car. Use newspaper or drop cloths to catch any overspray.
  3. Shake the spray paint can: Shake the spray paint can according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
  4. Test the spray paint: Spray a small amount of paint onto a piece of newspaper or a disposable surface to ensure that the spray is coming out evenly.
  5. Start painting: Hold the spray can 8-10 inches away from the trim and apply the paint in a sweeping motion, working in thin, even coats. Allow the paint to dry completely before applying additional coats.
  6. Allow the paint to dry completely: Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for dry time.
  7. Remove the masking tape and newspaper or drop cloths.
  8. Buff the painted area using a microfiber cloth to make it smooth.

It is important to note that a few light coats are better than one heavy coat. It is also important to protect the surrounding areas of the car from overspray.

Do you need primer for painting trim?

It depends on the condition of the trim and the type of paint being used. In most cases, a primer is not necessary for painting car trim.

However, if the trim is in poor condition, such as being very faded or discolored, or if the paint being used is a type that requires a primer, then a primer may be necessary.

If the trim is new or in good condition and the paint is specifically designed for use on plastic and trim, then a primer may not be necessary.

The paint itself should contain the adhesion properties and the necessary ingredients to provide a smooth finish.

It’s also worth noting that if the trim is textured or porous, a primer would be beneficial in helping the paint adhere and fill in any imperfections on the surface.

If you’re unsure whether or not a primer is necessary, it’s always best to check the manufacturer’s instructions or consult with a professional.


FAQ’s of How to spray paint trim

Sure, you can use either method to paint. Each has their advantages, depending on the situation. Brushing is quicker and cheaper, while spraying is slightly harder to do and there may be a few mistakes along the way. But in the end, no one will be able to tell the difference between the two.

You should first use the larger tip size to spray the primer on the wall. It is the best to apply the primer using the 5-inch tip. After the primer is dried, you can proceed with the final trim paint using a smaller tip. If you want to save some money, you can use a 3-inch tip to spray the second coat. This is a great way to save some money and time.

You may paint trim before cutting it or after cutting it. The answer to this question is really dependent upon the situation. You should never paint trim without sanding beforehand. This is true for painted or stained trim. The sanding process will get rid of any loose paint and help you smooth the trim surface. That way, the trim will be easier to cut and to paint.

It depends on the surface that you are painting. For example, if you are painting the baseboards in your living room, first you should paint the walls, let it dry for a day and then paint the trim. Cover window and door frames with tarps so the paint doesn’t stick to that. Same if you are painting woodwork, you must paint the woodwork first and the walls after.


Summary of How to spray paint trim

We hope you enjoyed our blog post about how to paint trims at home. If you have any questions about the painting process, please don’t hesitate to contact us at any time.

We’re happy to help you with any project that you may be working on. If you’re interested in painting and staining one of your own rooms, we’d be happy to help you.

Till next time see yaa painter fellas!

Matthew Edward

Matthew Edward is a professional painter who loves to paint and wants to share useful tips and tricks which he had learned in many years of experience in painting. He also used many products that can be used for painting he has tried and tested each and every product to give an unbias opinion about it in his review. This blog is very useful for those newbies who want to learn painting without making mistakes.

Leave a Comment