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I just started a job in a affluent neighborhood and the customer is saying my painting is low quality. I'd like to explain here my process of what I've done exactly as I explained to her.

Starting off the walls are smooth plaster veneer in good condition, previously painted eggshell finish. Very good condition. I've set the conditions and used infrared to make sure walls are 65 degree F

My process is as follows:

1. Mask everything off, set up drop cloths and plastics and set up lighting.

2. Complete Scour walls with polesander 120grit, and closer inspecting with 120grit sanding block.

3. Wipe walls down, dig out raised areas, skim coat fast setting ez sand and allow to dry, applying 2nd skim on deep fills, then sand/wipe these patches with attention to edges to blend smooth

4. Using BM fresh start interior latex primer sealer color matched to finish color, apply with 2.5" nylon blend brush and tipping off cut line, and rolling with 1/4inch micro fiber 9" roller within 1' of ceiling and trims, back rolled immediately to ensure smooth even finish. Let dry.

5. 220 pole sand and hand sand inspection, wipe down again.

6. Apply finish Regal select eggshell in the sand manner and tools as with the primer, repeat steps 5 and 6 as necessary depending on color.

Customer complains the walls are not smooth and it's poor quality. I explain we could try using Floetrol but it's not worth it as it can affect eggshell finish. I'm at wits end. Any suggestions?



-Thanks, Tim
 

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Pictures worth 1000 words so I hope you took multiple before pictures with 5000w lights to show customer the improvement you made

I'm on a similar job. Customer wants that sprayed smooth look but previous painters have some walls roller stipple, and badly spackled nails, old mahogany trim that was never caulked tight in some places 1/2" in others... we decided two of the walls will be sprayed, others skimmed then cut and rolled due to previous stipple and the cost to customer associated to bring it up to level 5 spray in an occupied home. Probably fixed over 500 nail pops already and you better believe we have close up pictures of every wall when the customer inevitably complains about the invoice $$$ just whip out the photos and say "you didn't want these fixed?"

Another job recently a wall was flush with the dark gray cabinets, skimmed 5 times sanded to 400 and sprayed with dead flat gemini Evo. Smooth as a baby's butt but the cost to do that for a whole house would be astronomical. Customer has to manage expectations.
 

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There are those customers who do have very strange ideas in mind about exactly how things should look.

But there are also quite a few reasons that a paint job will look off. This is your first post here, and you didn't post any kind of intro so no one knows anything about your professional painting experience. Out of curiosity, why are you rolling walls with a 1/4" nap? That's not going to help. It will leave initial stipple smaller, but with fewer mils it will set up faster. Either that or you're rolling quite small swaths and then that can overwork it. It can easily provide too much stipple and uneven sheens. If you don't let your cuts dry 100% you'll get hat banding...

Floetrol is not compatible w/ regal. If you go that route you'd want the BM 518 extender.
 

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I just started a job in a affluent neighborhood and the customer is saying my painting is low quality. I'd like to explain here my process of what I've done exactly as I explained to her.

Starting off the walls are smooth plaster veneer in good condition, previously painted eggshell finish. Very good condition. I've set the conditions and used infrared to make sure walls are 65 degree F

My process is as follows:

1. Mask everything off, set up drop cloths and plastics and set up lighting.

2. Complete Scour walls with polesander 120grit, and closer inspecting with 120grit sanding block.

3. Wipe walls down, dig out raised areas, skim coat fast setting ez sand and allow to dry, applying 2nd skim on deep fills, then sand/wipe these patches with attention to edges to blend smooth

4. Using BM fresh start interior latex primer sealer color matched to finish color, apply with 2.5" nylon blend brush and tipping off cut line, and rolling with 1/4inch micro fiber 9" roller within 1' of ceiling and trims, back rolled immediately to ensure smooth even finish. Let dry.

5. 220 pole sand and hand sand inspection, wipe down again.

6. Apply finish Regal select eggshell in the sand manner and tools as with the primer, repeat steps 5 and 6 as necessary depending on color.

Customer complains the walls are not smooth and it's poor quality. I explain we could try using Floetrol but it's not worth it as it can affect eggshell finish. I'm at wits end. Any suggestions?



-Thanks, Tim
Document everything. Take pictures (post here for feedback).

Floetrol is not compatible with modern wb paints.

a microfiber roller may help (3/8”). I agree with Joe that 1/4” might be too short.

Make sure you fully compete one wall at a time. Keep a wet edge.

may be worth trying a different paint on one wall for comparison, if worse comes to worse.

Remind customer you are committed to her satisfaction.
 

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how long have you been painting? saying that you can try something else to the client which is accepting some level of responsibility and then asking the internet with no pictures if youre responsible leads me to believe you dont have much faith in your finished product.
 

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just like to correct old wives' tales misinformation being spread here about Floetrol not being compatible with modern waterborne paints
absolutely false statement
we are using floetrol with behr and sherwin williams paints and never had any problems, ever!

painter friend of mine is using floetrol with his benjmin moore paints (including regal) and never ever had any problems with it
he said that even the manager at bm store told him that is perfectly ok to use floetrol, but he said that bm has their own paint additive under bm name
of course bm will try to push their own additive, same with shw or behr, but there is nothing wrong with using floetrol in modern wb paints, including regal

i guess some painters listen to the marketing bs from paint companies trying to push their line of products and just blindly repeat the bs marketing mantra
truth might be that bm paint additive could be bit "better" than floetrol, but to say that floetrol is not compatible with regal is just a pure misinformation
please stop doing that!
if that was true, then i'm sure there would be tons of posts on internet bitching about it
floetrol experts here, please tell me why then some bm store still sell floetrol if floetrol is not compatible with bm paints?
some stores carry it because 'painters' like your self like to cosplay as a chemist and are happy to sell you additional product even though its a 50 year old formula. I would suggest you use General finishes or Target coatings extenders. XIM or M1 are a good second choice. BM extender is good for dark colors it has the same resin aura uses so you don't lose film performance thinning the product. Floetrol can cause paint film seperation, and reduce the sheen of glossy acrylics among other things. there are better alternatives out there so I would suggest you not use floetrol but I'm sure you know better than the chemists who make the stuff.
Just one source i found first hit on google, there are many many more if you look instead of pretending you are a chemist:


Font Parallel Rectangle Number Circle


Font Number Pattern Parallel Circle
 

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man, that is a very creepy statement, especially in today's social environment
sooner or later somebody will ask you why you're going around touching baby's butts
wish you would stop using that comparison
use something else please
Well I can guarantee you've never done flat almost black lacquer on level 5 drywall with flush cabinets so that's the only way I can describe it to you. Please do not troll; this is a forum for professionals.
 

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I used Floetrol with BM Regal 508 Ceiling paint and nothing bad happened. Not with the wall paints, though. Floetrol made it have great open time and also made it burn my eyes less for whatever reason. My boss bought it because a dude at the BM store said use Floetrol with the ceiling paint but the special BM extender with Aura we were having issues with. Wasn't my choice.

Still, Coco's chart is very interesting as it kinda proves what I expected/thought, that thinning latex paint with plain water is actually fine/the best option. 30 minutes vs 15 for Floetrol without really altering any other paint properties. For some reason many people I worked with hated the idea of adding water to paint but would use extender, and I always questioned this logic. Of course you don't want to go beyond 8oz per gallon or so (and many paints now say don't extend at all, like most SW paints in the data sheets now) but still to me it seemed most logical and it also happens to be free. BM unless something changed does allow for 8oz water in all their paints depending on conditions in the spec sheet, so if the OP is having trouble, why not? Another guy on here complained about Regal having excessive stipple recently, too, so maybe it's something going on with this batch being extra thick. I remember the 508 ceiling paint used to be so thick you could stand a paint stick up in it, but the most recent batch I used in 2021 was a normal SW-like consistency and seemed to have better open time than before.

For the OP, too, one thing I've wondered about is I always use microfibers, but I always prewet them and spin them out, it's supposed to help release paint better/more smoothly, and imo it does cut down on texture for sure, especially using 1/2" or 9/16" nap. I always kind of wonder if perhaps it is sort of watering down the paint by prewetting though, albeit not by adding water to the can itself. You really need to wring and spin the water out of a microfiber roller if you're prewetting though.

Personally I think you'd get about as smooth as you can go with a 3/8" microfiber, thin the paint with 4-8oz water, and prewetting and spinning out the roller. Also I don't know about skimcoating and priming and all that you're doing, by that I mean unless the customer has paid you to do that specifically, there's no reason to do it imo, especially with plaster veneer, adding joint compound changes the "feel" of the veneer plaster, so outside of nail holes/etc, I wouldn't be reskimming it. If they were happy enough with the last guy's painting and the smoothness of it, I think all you're responsible for on your end is a light scuff/pole sand of the walls and that's it. With Regal, too, unless it's a very drastic color change or a white/cream where it may not cover, I don't see a reason to prime either going over a normal latex eggshell paint. I wouldn't make your job harder than it needs to be, in other words.
 

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man, that is a very creepy statement, especially in today's social environment
sooner or later somebody will ask you why you're going around touching baby's butts
wish you would stop using that comparison
use something else please
Kick it down several notches. This forum is for grown up discussions.
 

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some stores carry it because 'painters' like your self like to cosplay as a chemist and are happy to sell you additional product even though its a 50 year old formula. I would suggest you use General finishes or Target coatings extenders. XIM or M1 are a good second choice. BM extender is good for dark colors it has the same resin aura uses so you don't lose film performance thinning the product. Floetrol can cause paint film seperation, and reduce the sheen of glossy acrylics among other things. there are better alternatives out there so I would suggest you not use floetrol but I'm sure you know better than the chemists who make the stuff.
Just one source i found first hit on google, there are many many more if you look instead of pretending you are a chemist:


View attachment 115066

View attachment 115065
Figured I’d add to this:


Excerpt from USPTO 10,538,675:

“Another method of improving open time involves the use of commercial paint extenders, which a consumer can add to a pre-manufactured aqueous latex paint. One latex-based paint extender on the market is Floetrol.RTM., which is commercially available from the Flood Company of Hudson, Ohio. However, when Floetrol.RTM. is added to paints, the aqueous paints still tend to form skins, which are indicative of poor open time. Floetrol.RTM. also negatively affects water sensitivity and paint flow leveling. Furthermore, Floetrol.RTM. also does not provide compatibility with many commercial low-VOC latex paints since it can cause quick syneresis and separation. Floetrol.RTM. also reduces the gloss of higher sheen paints, such as semigloss and high gloss paints. Other commercially available open time additives include WonderWet.TM. IV and Optifilm.TM. OT1200. The commercially available open time additives may also negatively affect properties of paint films, such as scrubability and water sensitivity.”

Being that Floetrol is essentially watered down vinyl acrylic resin, using it to extend open time in 100% acrylics is likely to diminish the film properties. I believe it was originally formulated for use with earlier vinyl latex paints.
 

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I used Floetrol with BM Regal 508 Ceiling paint and nothing bad happened. Not with the wall paints, though. Floetrol made it have great open time and also made it burn my eyes less for whatever reason. My boss bought it because a dude at the BM store said use Floetrol with the ceiling paint but the special BM extender with Aura we were having issues with. Wasn't my choice.

Still, Coco's chart is very interesting as it kinda proves what I expected/thought, that thinning latex paint with plain water is actually fine/the best option. 30 minutes vs 15 for Floetrol without really altering any other paint properties. For some reason many people I worked with hated the idea of adding water to paint but would use extender, and I always questioned this logic. Of course you don't want to go beyond 8oz per gallon or so (and many paints now say don't extend at all, like most SW paints in the data sheets now) but still to me it seemed most logical and it also happens to be free. BM unless something changed does allow for 8oz water in all their paints depending on conditions in the spec sheet, so if the OP is having trouble, why not? Another guy on here complained about Regal having excessive stipple recently, too, so maybe it's something going on with this batch being extra thick. I remember the 508 ceiling paint used to be so thick you could stand a paint stick up in it, but the most recent batch I used in 2021 was a normal SW-like consistency and seemed to have better open time than before.

For the OP, too, one thing I've wondered about is I always use microfibers, but I always prewet them and spin them out, it's supposed to help release paint better/more smoothly, and imo it does cut down on texture for sure, especially using 1/2" or 9/16" nap. I always kind of wonder if perhaps it is sort of watering down the paint by prewetting though, albeit not by adding water to the can itself. You really need to wring and spin the water out of a microfiber roller if you're prewetting though.

Personally I think you'd get about as smooth as you can go with a 3/8" microfiber, thin the paint with 4-8oz water, and prewetting and spinning out the roller. Also I don't know about skimcoating and priming and all that you're doing, by that I mean unless the customer has paid you to do that specifically, there's no reason to do it imo, especially with plaster veneer, adding joint compound changes the "feel" of the veneer plaster, so outside of nail holes/etc, I wouldn't be reskimming it. If they were happy enough with the last guy's painting and the smoothness of it, I think all you're responsible for on your end is a light scuff/pole sand of the walls and that's it. With Regal, too, unless it's a very drastic color change or a white/cream where it may not cover, I don't see a reason to prime either going over a normal latex eggshell paint. I wouldn't make your job harder than it needs to be, in other words.
I remember this conversation with you from a while ago about pre wetting mf roller covers, but I gave up trying to find it.

Microfibers have been a game changer for me. I use exclusively 3/8 and 1/2” microfiber for almost everything. They roll out smooth, hold a good amount of paint, and keep their shape better than many other covers I’ve tried. I find I can roll out several rooms in a house before feeling I need to change covers.

My the only complaint is that they shed fibers for the first wall, despite rolling the cover with tape beforehand. I can’t see myself soaking them in water first, but it is a thirsty fiber, and that would likely solve the shedding issue (can you confirm?) . However, I do soak the covers in the paint in the tray a while before using when possible and roll them out thoroughly before starting a wall... I just plan to pick out fibers for the first wall.
 

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I remember this conversation with you from a while ago about pre wetting mf roller covers, but I gave up trying to find it.

Microfibers have been a game changer for me. I use exclusively 3/8 and 1/2” microfiber for almost everything. They roll out smooth, hold a good amount of paint, and keep their shape better than many other covers I’ve tried. I find I can roll out several rooms in a house before feeling I need to change covers.

My the only complaint is that they shed fibers for the first wall, despite rolling the cover with tape beforehand. I can’t see myself soaking them in water first, but it is a thirsty fiber, and that would likely solve the shedding issue (can you confirm?) . However, I do soak the covers in the paint in the tray a while before using when possible and roll them out thoroughly before starting a wall... I just plan to pick out fibers for the first wall.
I find there's less shedding when I prewet them, yeah. And I don't even normally wrap tape around the covers, either, just prewet and spin them out pretty thoroughly.

Try it out, just make sure the roller isn't soaking wet.
 

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To: Punjab Painting. Listen, you can totally add floetrol to whatever you want. Will it work, sure, but will it be better than the proper additive? No way. Sometimes you may be blown away by the results of proper products. Floetrol is old school latex reducer not for new hybrid acrylics.

To the OP: Who knows? Your finish schedule sounds like any shlub with a brush and ladder would say. Does your finish look same or better than the previous coating? That should be your guage. It may be hard to reproduce a smooth finish with today's products, but that is your job. Let's see some pics!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
To: Punjab Painting. Listen, you can totally add floetrol to whatever you want. Will it work, sure, but will it be better than the proper additive? No way. Sometimes you may be blown away by the results of proper products. Floetrol is old school latex reducer not for new hybrid acrylics.

To the OP: Who knows? Your finish schedule sounds like any shlub with a brush and ladder would say. Does your finish look same or better than the previous coating? That should be your guage. It may be hard to reproduce a smooth finish with today's products, but that is your job. Let's see some pics!!
Looks pretty darn smooth in the pic
 
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