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Back rolling helps painters achieve a professional-looking finish.

All of the building trades have their own trade secrets, and professional painters are no exception. Experienced painting contractors have learned they can work faster and better when they apply paint with an airless sprayer, then immediately follow up by using a paint roller to back roll the paint into the same surface. The result is a professional-looking finish that's likely to last for many years.

Downside of Paint Sprayers:

Pro painters working on new home construction or apartment repainting projects often use paint sprayers to help them finish the job quickly. Unfortunately, a sprayed-on coat of latex paint may not go on evenly, and it may not adhere to drywall or plaster surfaces as well as a rolled-on finish.

Advantages of Back Rolling:

The process of back rolling involves the use a paint roller to press the paint that was previously applied by sprayer firmly and evenly into the surface of the wall. At the same time, the roller also fills any small cracks, holes or crevices with paint.

Better Touch-Ups

Back rolling also makes it easier to touch up the paint surface later if it becomes necessary. Walls painted by spray gun alone look slightly different than a wall finished by brush or roller. If a small patch to your paint job is needed on a wall that was back rolled, it can be applied seamlessly with a roller.

Two house painting techniques used to push the primer or paint into the surface is back rolling and back brushing. This takes place during spray paint application.

Using an airless paint sprayer is a great way to apply either the primer or paint to almost any surface. But, there are limits to what it can do.

Spraying paint tends to bridge small cracks, not filling them completely.

This problem can occur to both interior and exterior surfaces. Such as new textured drywall or old clapboard siding. Immediately using a roller after spraying can push the material into these small cracks and surface imperfections. This creates a filled, protected, smoother surface.

Try back rolling on new textured drywall. Back roll as the wallboard primer is applied. This results in a smoother more even finish.

Back brushing is used in special cases were a roller will not work. The same principles apply. By using a brush instead of a roller, the primer or finish can be pushed around and worked into the surface. For clear finishes having a brush handy is a good idea, to catch any runs.