Oil Paint Over Latex? How To Avoid Painting Mistakes

Published on December 01, 2020

The aesthetic sense of mankind has always appreciated true art in any form, either a sketch drawn on a piece of paper or the beauty of architectural design in the form of mesmerizing buildings. In simple terms, the term art is none other than the perfection in the vibrant colors filled in the drawn lines. This should not come as a surprise that the skill to paint and draw is regarded in very high terms, even as seemingly menial as house painting work.

House painting is one of the most demanded skills nowadays because it can give a brand-new look to your old and dull house. However, it might be expensive for you to hire a team of professionals to do this task, so, you might be wondering to do this by yourself, and have some new creative and productive experience. In such cases, it is better to focus on what not to do rather than focusing on what to do. This could help you to avoid blunders and give a clean and clear look to your work.

Oil Paint Vs Latex Paint

Oil painting is much more popular than other forms, like sketching, drawing, and etc. Its popularity is because of the versatility of oil paints which are easy to blend, slow-drying time - allowing the artist to redesign its artwork and making the corrections. But there are some issues with oil paints, firstly its odor is unbearable for some people and secondly, precautions need to be taken so that dusty grains do not fall on the wet paints.

The latex paint is trouble-free to work with and it dries off quickly. Latex painting is good for common painting projects which include painting your wall, ceiling, or furniture. However, it is not that durable and the luster and smoothness might not be up to the mark for some people who need to have more reflective surfaces.

Common Painting Mistakes And How To Avoid Them

From the selection of medium to the nature of paint and color, there are many mistakes that you can make while enhancing the look and feel of the surface. The cause of this could be the oversight on your part while preparing and studying things you don’t know.

Related: Unique And Funny Gifts For People Who Loves Latex Paints

In this post, we will cover some of the most common mistakes that amateurs while taking up painting projects for their homes, offices, etc. They range from general to-do things to the selection of suitable painting material according to the nature of your surface. So, read thoroughly and you will find practical tips to avoid mistakes while painting.

Not Covering The Furniture & Flooring

When you count all the costs involved in this negligence, including paint-related insurance claims and so on, this could one of the most expensive mistakes that anyone could make while preparing for the paint job. It is clear to anyone that bare surfaces will catch the arbitrary splashes and paint flicks. This can cost you a lot, so covering your belongings with a suitable medium could be the first step in the right direction to save yourself from dear penalties.

If you need to cover the furnishings of your rooms like a pro, the best way is to spread tarp all over them and cover it from all sides not only the top. After that, you can apply tape on the seams and pack it. this will save them from any stray splash. You should not underestimate the sneakiness of paint drops. There are instances where professionals are left baffled on how paint reached under several layers. There is no science behind it, just cover it and you will be good to go. The angles to which paint can spill are crazy, or it is just a plain, simple mistake on your side by letting the paint can tip while you are on a ladder.

Drops sheets can be a great candidate to mask the furnishings but the dust from sanding can be deposited on the furniture through it. After covering the furniture comes the turn of the floor. There are many who would advise you to let it be, but it is always better to go for the drop sheets on the floor. They can handle big droplets much and only a little paint can seep through them on the floor which can be wiped with ease.

You cannot use plastic everywhere in your house to cover paint marks and splashes. Here are the reasons why:

• When you go for the plastic on the floor, there will be no absorption of paint on this surface. Once, you step on it, you will carry the paint and spread the stains in the places where the floor is not covered.

• Paint on plastic can be a slippery combination and makes you slip on the surface when you step on it. This could put a serious risk in the form of fall and slippages.

Drops sheets could be the perfect solution to the stains by paint without putting so much on the line. The best part of having a drop sheet is that after removing it once the job is done, you can vacuum the place and clean it with almost no trouble at all.

Oil & Latex Don’t Mix Well

It is considered to be one of the worst nightmares of painters when they are done painting latex-based paint over a layer of oil-based paint. If you do not have to amend it or take it off, all is well. But if you need to tinker with it, good luck taking off the upper layer of latex-based paint from the oil-based one without scrapping the surface to the bone. So, pick up sandstone and get to work!

Keep in mind that painting oil over latex is fine but vise versa is not a good idea. The reason is that in the coming years, every fresh coat of paint will stick to the latex only which could be problematic for anyone facing that issue.

A few years back, you could not latex over oil because there was no adhesion between the two at all. This was both convenient and nightmarish for people who want to employ these two popular types of paints on a single surface. It also meant that anyone could have scrapped the layer of the latex from oil by a mere fingernail tug or by splashing water on the surface and wiping it gently.

If you are still adamant to use latex over oil, it is best to sand the surface as much as possible, even if it only a little lustrous, and use 100% acrylic latex products for painting.

Sanding can help the latex clawing the wall in the minor absence of oil. While it has the ability to save you from the problem of adhesion, the best route a little different. It involves applying one surface of latex as a primer over the oil surface and then applying the second coat of latex with a finishing coat. The bind produced in this way will have strong holding over the surface with no concerns at your end.

Same Colors Do Not Always Match

One of the headaches in painting is matching the color. It may seem as straightforward as sticking to one formula, but in reality, it is not. When you run out of a color, you cannot just go to the paint shop and buy the same color of the same brand and type and expect it to match.

You can avoid such conundrums by mixing all the paint you have of one color in a big pail and stir it. This is one of the easiest ways to have color consistency throughout the job. Otherwise, there are chances that you will see blotting and patching which could be enough to ground all of your hard work.

Dark colors are more prone to diasporic shading. There are always changes in their cases of mismatching colors. If you are working with a roller, it would be much convenient for dipping and tipping in the wide-mouthed pail. It could be a real setback for you to see the patches on the surface (where you used the rollers) and on the sides of the walls (where you used the brush).

If you are running low on the paint and there is still an area that needs to be coated, it is best to get a new can and mix it with the existing paint. This way you will have a consistent texture and color for the same paint and you can apply it with no trouble at all.

When you start another wall after adding a new can of paint, make sure to treat it as if you are using a different color. This will give you some room for error and you will save yourself from the trouble of doing it all over again.

Misuse Of Tape For Masking Different Colors

There is a misconception about using the tape to segregate between two colors on the same surface. Or you should have to cover the varnished surface with masking tape to avoid permanent stains. This is another thing that will waste your precious time. And at the end, when you remove the tape, you will notice that the color still dissolved through the seam underneath and the line between the two colors is not sharp and clean.

The best you can do is to practice a straight brush stroke when you are painting around the edges and trims. This can save a lot of time and sweat with the best results when you are done with the work. If you think you are not up for the work, you will surprise yourself by being so good after just tying.

Still, if your hand is not steady, you can use a thin cloth rolled around a putty knife to wipe any mark that is throwing your line off. It will be time-effective and give your work a professional look.

It does not mean that you cannot use tape for masking at all while you are painting around the house. Of course, you should tape surfaces that can hold up their surface even in the absence of an adhesive substance. Most of the sites that can use tape include:

• Handrails

• Plastic Baseboards

• Tile Baseboards (that sport grout along the wall)

When it comes to applying tape to the door handles and frames, it is best to remove them for the duration of the paint job so that you can install them on a freshly-painted surface after it is completely dried.

Purchasing A Cheap Paint Brand

The deal-breaker for many people when they are shopping for paints is not one of the qualities, they show off on TV, it is the cost. They decide on what to adorn their walls based on how much they need to pay for it. it may look like an affordable option upfront, but it comes with the expense of paint flaking off too soon or starts to become yellowish after a couple of months of application.

Between the time of application and flaking off, there are many factors that you need to consider.

• Paints with low price tags are not very good with water or washing. There are instances where they could not even handle a splash. Afterward, the area looks like it was scrubbed by a mesh! On the other hand, a respectable brand with a reasonable price tag will not leave much evidence for the washing or water splashing to clean the surface.

• In application, you will find out that cheaper paints are not as much opaque when compared to their counterparts that come with a heftier price tag. This results in more paint in quantity to cover the surfaces completely. More coats mean more paint and more labor which could get around the price of good quality paint. But you are still missing the perks they offer.

If you need to check the quality of paint, just in case, there is a simple test that you can perform. When you swirl the can and the paint moves with less friction and in every possible direction, it means it has thinner than the paint, which puts it in the category of cheaper and substandard paints. Good quality paint has much viscosity which allows it extra adhesive power that will make it stick to the surfaces.


Painting is fun even if you only know half the things you are not supposed to do. It is because these would translate into costly mistakes that can set you back in both financial and mental terms. We have discussed some of the mistakes in painting that most folks do, so it is always better to steer clear from them and do all the necessary preparation before taking up the brush or roller. The rest will take care of itself!

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