How to Fix Paint Runs

If you’ve ever used a paint sprayer, chances are you have had to deal with paint runs. Runs occur when you spray too much paint in the same spot. This is why it’s important to keep the sprayer moving when you have the trigger pulled. But as hard as we try to avoid paint runs, they are bound to happen. I had a few while painting the mudroom lockers in our flip house.

Most people’s natural instinct is to wipe a run when it happens, but this is the worst thing you can do. Doing this will ruin the paint finish. Here are the steps you need to take to properly fix a paint run.

Step 1: Let it Dry

It might sound crazy, but let the paint run dry to the touch. In my experience, letting it dry to the touch is good enough.

Step 2: Wet Sand the Paint Run

After the run has dried, take a medium grit sanding block and dip it in water. The water will help keep the paint cool while you sand and prevent it from gumming up. Use the sanding block to sand the paint run and the surrounding area. Periodically check the surface with your hand to feel if it is smooth.

While you’re sanding, you might need to rewet the sponge if you feel it getting dry. But really it shouldn’t take that long to sand out the paint run.

Once you’re satisfied with the smoothness of the surface after sanding with the medium grit sponge, switch to a fine grit sponge. You’ll want to wet this sponge as well. This step should only require a few seconds of sanding to make sure the area is really smooth.

Step 3: Spray the Surface

Now that the surface has been sanded smooth, it’s time to repaint the area with your sprayer. First, apply a quick first coat, and let it dry. Then apply a second coat.

The paint run should now be completely gone. In fact, if you followed these steps it should look like it never happened.

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1 Comment

  • Reply Emily

    Wondering if you have a diy for the vent that is built-in to the bottom of the mudroom lockers pictured here, please? I’ve been trying to figure it out as I’ve seen it in other photos. Thanks so much for all that you do!

    April 5, 2022 at 2:40 am
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