painting baseboards

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Kat2014

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1950's house, hardwood floors, wood trim in an ugly orangey brown. I am going to paint the trim white. Or...hire someone to do it. I have done a lot of painting in a number of houses - everything from walls to windows, furniture, etc. But my knees are really not loving the idea of crawling around on the floor and painting the baseboard trim in the entire house. I have tried for the last 2 years to just accept the color as it is, and that is not working: hate. hate. hate that color.

So what I need is advice for the baseboard work: (there is quarter round as well)...wide painter's tape on the floor, knee pads and just get on with it? Or, is this going to be so incredibly miserable that I should just hire someone to do it? I really dread that part - you never know for sure if someone's work is any good until it is too late. (I got LOTS of local recommendations for my yard guy, and he turned out to be a lazy bum)

Perhaps there are some tips and tricks for painting baseboards that will magically solve all problems? Let me hear it! ;) I have even considered ripping all of it off the walls and replacing it with new stuff, which I would be sane enough to paint prior to installation. Is painting them in place, as is, such a hassle that it is worth doing that?

Thanks in advance for your time and help. And FYI - I don't need help on the actual paint choice or process (sand, prime etc..) just help with the fact that it is baseboard - yikes!
 

Snoonyb

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"wide painter's tape on the floor,"quality", knee pads and just get on with it."
 

bud16415

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If the stuff is 1950 I’m willing to bet I can also guess the shape is dated along with the finish. It might be time to rip it out and get a base that suits the shape and color you want. It will still involve knee work and some finishing and will cost more than a gallon of paint and a few rolls of tape, But it is the other option.


As a side note as I got older and the knees went I find myself working off my butt more. Its slower but it isn’t a race anymore.
 

Brian Famous

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You don't necessarily need to do the tape. I like to use a long straight edge (which really can be anything, as long as it is skinny and flat like a sheet of aluminum or any other metal) for the bottom edge and just continually slide it along with me as I paint. That way I'm not fussing with painter's tape. I also just free hand the upper edge most of the time.
 

DFBonnett

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I had the same issue with the same color stain thirty years ago with my house built in 1956. It involved all the windows, trim, and doors. First I thoroughly sanded everything to break the glaze on the varnish, then rubbed down small areas at a time with Wil-Bond followed immediately an aggressive oil-based primer (Cover Stain, IIRC). Then two coats of the top coat of your choice. It's a big job, particularly the prep, but if it is not done thoroughly you'll get chipping.
 

Kat2014

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Yes, as I said, I am familiar with the process. I have already done the windows, doors and other trim. It is just the baseboards that I am dreading...
 

Jeff Handy

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I have used various edge guards like this over the years.
They come shorter also, and some have one end set up to help paint into a corner.

You have to have a fairly dry brush as you paint right near the bottom of the baseboard.

And the metal edge needs occasional wiping off with a paper towel or rag.

https://www.amazon.com/Red-Devil-4047-Multi-Purpose-Painters/dp/B00004YNLA
 

Steve123

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Putting painters tape in front of the quarter round is not going to work well. You need to get tape (or other) UNDER the quarter round. Having said that, newspaper works just as well as tape. But you really need to test what works out best for your situation and your technique for getting the guard under the quarter round. Putty knife may help in getting it under there.

Yes, working on your knees/belly to paint baseboard is a pain.
 

Kat2014

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Yes, that has been one of my concerns. I think I night see if the quarter round comes off easily...if it does, then I might pry it off, paint the baseboard - without having to worry about the bottom edge being perfect, then reapply new quarter round - prepainted, and covering the bottom edge (of course).
 
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