Tips for How to Use Painter’s Tape
Apply painter’s tape faster and more effectively so you can get started painting sooner and make fewer mistakes.
Clean Moldings Before Applying Painter’s Tape
Click here to learn more about interior painting preparation.
Speed Up Painting Prep with a Painter’s Tape Applicator
Press Down Painter’s Tape to Ensure a Good Bond
Find more tips for using painter’s tape here.
How to Protect Walls When Painting a Ceiling
How to Apply Painter’s Tape in a Corner
Apply Kraft Paper Border to Protect Floors when Painting
With the border in place, you can move tarps along as you paint, and you won’t have to waste time keeping them perfectly tight to the baseboard. As long as the edge of the tarp is covering the paper, you’re good to go. And this tip works equally well on hard surfaces and carpet.
Apply Painter’s Tape Without a Special Tool
Learn some of the best-kept secrets from professional painters.
Score Painter’s Tape Before Pulling It Off
The solution is to let the paint dry completely and then score the edge of the tape with a putty knife before you pull it off. This will break any bond that has formed with the paint and ensure that the masking tape will come off cleanly without damaging your paint job.
Painting Inside Corners
But don’t try to tape right down the corner. Instead, move the tape about 1/8 in. from the corner where it’ll be easier to get a perfectly straight line. Nobody will ever notice that one paint color extends slightly past the corner, and you’ll end up with a straight, crisp color change.
Painting Prep: Foolproof Window Masking
If you’re spray painting instead of brushing, start by cutting a piece of paper about an inch smaller than the glass and putting it under the first piece of tape you apply.
Paper Flaps Protect Trim from Paint Roller Spatter
Extending the painter’s tape with a piece of 3-in. masking paper is all that’s needed to protect the woodwork from most roller spatter and drips. Three-inch paper is ideal because it’ll stand straight out. Wider paper may seem like a better idea, but it’ll sag and won’t provide as much protection. And since the 3-in. paper doesn’t sag, you’ll still be able to close doors without the paper getting in the way.
Apply 3-in. paper along the top trim of windows and doors and along the baseboard. Don’t bother to fit the paper tight into corners along the baseboard; you don’t need much spatter protection there.
Protect with Masking Paper When Painting
Masking paper adds a few bucks to the cost of a painting job, but it’s worth it. Besides protecting wide trim, it makes it easy to cut in along the baseboard, plus it protects the edge of the floor when you’re rolling the walls and ceiling.
Choose the Right Painter’s Tape for the Job
How to Remove Painter’s Tape
Here are solutions to some common problems:
When to take off painters tape
If you’re a procrastinator or slow painter, choose best painter’s tape that’s designed to be left on for several days. Scotch No. 2090 is one brand that uses a slow-hardening adhesive so it can be safely left on for about 14 days.
To avoid peeling paint, pull the best painter’s tape off immediately or wait at least overnight for the paint to dry completely. Beware of paint that feels dry to the touch but hasn’t hardened and fully bonded to the wall. It may come off along with the painter’s tape.
Remove painter’s tape at about a 45-degree angle to the painted surface, as shown, to minimize the tendency for paint to peel.
If, despite waiting overnight and using a good technique, you notice the paint still peels with the painter’s tape, use the edge of your putty knife or a utility knife to cut the seal between the wall and tape before you remove the tape.