A paint shield is designed to reduce the possibility of painting accidents. We all know that the possibility of getting paint on an area that is adjacent to where we are painting is real. We try very hard to have a steady hand and to not let our paint line weave off to the side, but experts and novices alike have had this happen.
A paint shield is a tool that you use to help you keep your paint where you want it to be. It protects the surface beside where you are painting and reduces the number of “uh-oh” moments you experience.
Choosing a Paint Shield
You probably already know that having the right tool is crucial to producing exceptional results. Paint shields provide you a barrier that stops you from painting “outside of the lines”.
Paint shield are often called:
- Trim guards
- Paint guides
These tools may be:
- Made of plastic
- They may be short or long
- They may have an aluminum blade
- They may be the common items like a dustpan or the putty knife from your toolbox
- They may be fashioned from a piece of cardboard with a straight edge
All paint shields are designed to be:
- A method of making your work easier
To choose the proper paint shield to use you have to consider the size of the paint job you are doing.
- Small jobs can be done effectively with a putty knife or the household dustpan. These jobs include painting around your wall trim. You may have a long area of wall trim but you can move the paint guard with you as you go.
All you really need at this point is to find something with a sharp and straight edge that can be held in place to absorb overspray or to stop you from coloring places you do not wish to color.
- For slightly larger jobs like when you are painting the siding on your home you will want to use larger paint shields.
Paint Shield Tips
- You have to properly position your paint shield for it to be able to do the work it is designed to do. To do this you should:
- Look around the painting project and determine what items you need to protect. This could be trim, an adjacent wall, a ceiling, the shingles on your roof, the brick on your home, etc.
- Position the paint shield so that the paint cannot come into contact with the area you are protecting
- If you are trying to protect an adjacent wall, and you also want to protect the ceiling, you should position the shield along the wall and tilt it slightly so that the ceiling is also protected.
Using a Paint Shield and a Spray Painter
Sometimes you will need an extra set of hands when you are using a paint shield and a spray painting apparatus. It can be hard to manipulate a larger paint shield into position and hold your paint sprayer in the other hand.
Whenever you are using a shield and a paint sprayer keep the following suggestions in mind:
- Keep the angle you hold the paint shield at consistent. When you move the shield the angle must be exactly like it was on the previous section if you want the final results to be consistent.
- Keep two to three inches between your sprayer nozzle and your paint shield
- Spray so that the majority of the paint will be centered at the middle of the shield or below the middle of the shield. This helps to reduce any possibility of overspray
- Move the paint shield before you move the sprayer
Keep the Shield Clean
The paint that the shield is protecting your surfaces from will eventually build-up and if you are not careful the paint can transfer from the paint shield to the area you mean to protect.
To avoid this complication:
- Look at the paint shield frequently to see if excess paint is building upon it
- Use a painting trowel and wipe away any excess
- Point the paint shield at the paint bucket and wipe the shield using the trowel so the excess paint falls into the paint bucket
- Use a damp cloth and wipe the shield
- Dry the shield with s dry cloth
- Repeat these steps as often as needed
You do not have to purchase professional paint shields, but the shields that are specifically designed to protect against paint transfer are more efficient. If you are taking the time to use a shield when you want the job to look right when you are finished, so go ahead and buy a traditional shield to use.
A paint shield is something that you can wash and use over and over again. You can even use these shields when you are trying to draw a straight line and to help you create a straight line when you are applying painters tape to an area.
Simple tools like these can often make the difference between a painting project looking like a child did the work and looking like you hired a pro to do the job.