Do Not Spray Semi-Gloss Paint on Walls or Ceilings

There are a couple of reasons not to use an airless sprayer to spray out walls and ceilings, that I will cover in this blog.

One of the main reasons, why building contractors, after they finish building a new home, will not have their painting crews spray out the house with semi-gloss or eggshell paint, but only with flat.

They will leave it up to the new homeowners to hire a painting crew of their choice, to apply the shiny stuff on their walls.


First Reason

Spraying semi-gloss or eggshell with an airless sprayer will atomize the paint as it comes out of the gun, and it will lose some of the shine when it dries.

That does not seem like a BIG deal until you try and touch up any imperfections, with the very same paint, and wonder why that it is coming out so much shinier.

That difference will show up like crazy.

Rolling and brushing out with semi-gloss or eggshell, does not atomize the paint.


This phenomenon is called “flashing”

Professional Painting is in Our Blood

There is one way around this problem of flashing, but it takes the teamwork of two painters.

While one painter is spaying, another painter is following him with a paint roller, and while the paint is still wet, rolling out the surface and then brushing in the edges.

This technique is called back rolling. 

Back rolling is also used outside, when you have very rough, dried out, or weather-worn wood, and you want the paint to bury deep beyond the surface like you might have on gables and eves.

But that painting technique is for another blog article.


Second Reason

Do not paint shiny paint on ceiling, even if you are rolling and brushing.

You should not paint semi-gloss or eggshell on your ceiling with a sprayer or even a roller or brush but only flat because every imperfection on the ceiling will show up especially if you have windows in the room.

The heavy directional lighting that comes in through the window, will show up any difference in texture, waves, or drywall tape that is not perfect because of the reflection.


Flat paint will not.

Professional Painting is in Our Blood

Semi-Gloss paint will reveal the imperfections on the ceilings when the light reflects off it from the window.

The shinier paint will not be so noticeable on the walls, bathrooms, closets, kitchens and anywhere there are no windows or, the walls are broken up with cabinets.

So, you see, there is not only a good reason not to spray semi-gloss or eggshell on ceilings or anywhere else but, not to use Semi-Gloss on ceilings in the first place, even if you are rolling and brushing.

I know flat paint is not very washable but, no one should be touching your ceilings in the first place and even if there is some kind of accident or water stain from a leak, you will still have to use a primer like Kilz to hide the stain, and then paint over that with your leftover flat paint you have from the first application.

Just make sure your left-over paint is well sealed in a can and, take wax paper, place it on top of the paint, to seal out any air that will cause the top of the paint to dry, and spoil the rest underneath it.

Also, store the paint can in a cool location.

Heat is also the enemy of stored paint.


I hope this helps in understanding how to paint and painters work. For more information on other blogs we have written, go here too, AZ SRB Painting Blogs

Where to find Semi-Gloss paint. Behr Paint and Dunn-Edwards Paint


Do Not Spray Semi-Gloss Paint on Walls or Ceilings

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Originally posted 2020-11-07 21:37:25.