How To Paint Unfinished, Discolored Drywall

Answers to pro painters’ most pressing questions by Rick Watson

We’re looking at a project where the drywall was installed 30 years ago but never finished. It is now brown. The new homeowner would like to finish the project. What would you recommend so we do not have bleed-through of this brown color?

First wash the walls with a good cleaner degreaser, as there is atmospheric residue that must be removed. Once that is dry, I would recommend a good stain-blocking primer like a synthetic shellac or a good acrylic-alkyd primer.

If there were smoke-type stains, I would suggest a true shellac primer. This will help seal the cleaned surface from stains and odor. Then finish with a quality topcoat.

For more information about primers visit the Sherwin-Williams contractor website.

This article was originally published in the Spring 2016 issue of PPC magazine. Rick Watson, director of Product Information and Technical Services at Sherwin-Williams, answers questions from pro painters in the Ask Your ProPartner™ column in PPC magazine.

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