These Paint Roller Hacks Will Save You Time, Money and Mess

published Feb 26, 2019
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(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

A fresh coat of paint changes the look and feel of an entire space, even in a weekend. If only paint would just get on the wall already, and brushes and rollers would clean themselves. Until there’s an app for that, make the whole project that much easier with these paint roller tips and hacks.

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

Some paint rollers, by their very nature, are fuzzy. But it’s no fun when some of that fuzz winds up stuck in the wet paint on your walls, and you have to manually pick it out before everything dries. One way to minimize the hassle is to get rid of any loose fibers on your roller before you get started. You can do this with a lint roller, or even regular packing tape.

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

Save money by using old rollers instead of buying a new one each time. If your roller isn’t 100 percent clean after the last project, use a pair of scissors to snip off the crusty bits—especially on the ends—before sticking it on your frame and starting again. The fresh paint will go on the wall a lot smoother.

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

Some folks might not know that you don’t need to buy the special extension poles sold in the paint section at the hardware store. If you have a wooden-handled mop or broom, detach it from the base, and screw it into the bottom of your paint roller frame. That’s one less thing to buy and store.

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

Paint jobs often take more than one day. If you plan to finish up tomorrow, or even the next day after that, swaddle your wet paint roller in plastic wrap so it’s not exposed to air. (To be honest, I usually don’t even take it off the frame.) Even better, stick it in the fridge overnight. When you’re ready to resume the job, just unwrap and your roller should still be wet and ready to go.

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

When you’re done painting, use a straight edge tool—like a putty knife or even a ruler—to scrape excess paint off your roller and back into the can. The less paint on the roller, the faster and easier it will be to clean.

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

When it comes time to clean your supplies, mix a half cup of fabric softener with one gallon of warm water in a bucket. Fabric softener lowers the surface tension between liquids and solids, making the water “wetter.” Let the roller soak for while and the fabric softener will do its thing. Then, rinse.

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)

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