Most people agree that ordinary, gray basement walls can look dreary and drab. This can make some basements look more like dungeons than an extra room. And, more often than not they end up as nothing more than a place to store things like outdated exercise equipment and boxes. If you’d like to transform your basement into an entertainment room, a game room, or a family room, a fresh coat of paint is the first step. However, before you begin slathering the walls with bright, vivid colors, you need to learn the proper preparation steps or you’re likely to end up with a finish that won’t hold up over time.
Things You Will Need
- Coarse brush
- Concrete sealer
- Spackle paste
- Blue painter’s tape
- 80 to 120 grit sandpaper
- Metal putty knife
- 5-gallon bucket
- Two paint roller covers
- Roller frame
- Roller extension pole
- 5-gallon bucket
- 3 to 4-inch latex paintbrush
- Latex primer
- Latex paint
- Scrub away dirt, dust and cobwebs with a dry, coarse brush.
- Apply concrete sealer to any foundation cracks that may be leaking moisture. Allow the concrete sealer to dry for one full day.
- Cover any areas you do not want painted with blue painter’s tape.
- Fill holes in the basement walls with spackle past. Use the metal putty knife to smooth the spackle paste. Allow the spackle paste to dry for two hours.
- Smooth the dried spackle paste using 80 to 120 grit sandpaper.
- Fill the 5-gallon bucket about half-way with latex primer. Slip the paint roller cover onto the roller frame. Attach the roller frame to the roller extension pole.
- Use the roller to apply primer to the basement walls. Begin at one far corner and work left to right. Be especially careful to smooth any drips or runs. Continue applying primer until all of the basement walls are covered.
- Use the 3 to 4-inch latex paintbrush to paint any areas that proved inaccessible to the roller. Allow the primer to dry for two hours.
- Clean the latex paintbrush, 5-gallon bucket and roller frame using warm water. Massage the water deep within the bristles of the paintbrush using your fingers. Dispose of the used paint roller cover with your usual garbage.
- Repeat steps six, seven and eight except use latex paint instead of primer. Use a new, clean paint roller cover to apply the paint.
Things to Consider
Never use ordinary masking tape in in lieu of blue painter’s tape or you may have bleed-through.
Make sure to use concrete sealer on any foundation cracks leaking moisture or you will have problems with paint adhesion in these areas.
Do not attempt to paint over concrete basement walls without priming them first or you will end up with peeling.
Horizontal concrete surfaces like basement floors require an acid etch before they are painted. Never attempt to paint basement floors with primer and paint as this will lead to chipping and peeling.