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Which roller nap length should I use?

The nap or pile refers to the length of the roller's fibres.

  • Use a 6mm-8mm short nap for smooth surfaces and high gloss paints.
  • Use a 12mm medium nap for ceilings, walls, low sheen and flat paints.
  • Use a 20mm long nap for rough surfaces.


The perfect grip for holding the brush is between the first finger and thumb, resting the fingertips on the top of the brush. Dip half the bristles into the paint and wipe the brush on the side of the can to remove excess. For the best result use short brush strokes when applying the paint.

Start at the top and work down, painting with light even strokes, working back into the wet edge. Always paint the edges of the area first. Always work in sections and paint up to a natural break before stopping.

Never try to paint over an area that is partially dried, as the brush will leave marks in the surface. If you see a run in the wet paint, paint over it as soon as possible with light even strokes.


After pouring the paint into the tray, dip the roller into the paint and then roll it back and forth on the shallow part of the tray to ensure even coverage. If you apply the paint too heavily it may splatter. Use an even pressure throughout application.

If you are planning to continue the work the next day, just keep the paint, brush and/or roller in the paint tray and cover with foil or cling wrap. The next morning, run the brush or roller over a newspaper a few times and it will be ready to use.

After the job is completed wash the rollers and brushes and paint tray with water for water-based paints or mineral turps for solvent-based paints.

Paint Application pads

Application pads are very handy when you have edges to paint around. Using a paint brush simply load the pad with paint and run it along the architrave, skirting or corner.

Remove masking tape or papers before the paint is too dry as removal later can lift and break the dry paint leaving a cracked and jagged edge.