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Painting & Wallpapering/Painting drywall ceilings


QUESTION: We are doing some remodeling in the basement of our 50 year old home.  Replaced drop ceilings with drywall.  Have painted ceilings with two coats of Kilz oil base primer and they look great.  Have told painter to let that complete ceiling painting.  He said that over the years he has had customers do the same and they have been most satisfied.  Would appreciate your experience and opinion on this decision.

Thanks in advance for your assistance.


ANSWER: I'd be happy to help, but I'm afraid I don't understand your question. Could you possibly re-phrase it?  

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: We are remodeling the basement of our 50 year old home.  We removed grid with Celotex ceilings and installed sheetrock/drywall ceilings throughout.  Our painting contractor suggested we paint ceilings with 2 coats of Kilz Original oil base primer with no overcoat.  He said he had done this many times with good results. He has done this and ceilings look great.  Before he completes all ceilings/walls/trim this week I would appreciate your opinion as to painting these ceilings with only the oil base primer and no latex ceiling paint.

Thanks in advance for your assistance.


That's a good question to ask.  If the surface were exterior versus interior, there'd be no debate, since primer on exterior surfaces will get chalky over time and doesn't have UV Protection.  Since this is interior however, the answer isn't so cut-and-dry.  Although you COULD get away with leaving your ceilings primed and NOT applying a top-coat, I wouldn't recommend it, since a surface which is only primed cannot be cleaned.  A painted interior finish, (especially a quality acrylic paint, will be much more durable and washable, and the higher in sheen you go, the more durable & washable it will be).  If you were to end up ONLY priming, you lose the option of being able to maintain the surface by cleaning, which means you'd have to touch-up each time in the future.  The paint acts as a protective glove.

If the area is still masked & protected, putting a finish coat of ceiling paint shouldn't cost near as much as your initial price for having the ceiling primed, since more than half of the work is the prep.  If the painter sprayed the paint versus brush & roll, spraying a final coat of finish takes no time at all.  In my opinion, you've come this far, don't skimp on putting that final coat on.

I'm sure your painter probably has the best of intentions and is quite likely giving you what he believes to be a practical and affordable solution.  I believe him when he said that he's done this many times and has had good results.  If, however, he were to live in one of these homes that had only been primed, I'm pretty sure he would understand that merely priming the ceiling is more of a short-term solution.  If he insists, I'd challenge him to furnish you with contact info from past customers with whom he has done this for so that you might gain first-hand knowledge of the advantages vs. disadvantages.  

Good luck and please feel free to contact me again if you have any more questions or comments.  

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troy stevens


Questions I could answer would be anything related to the preparation and painting of a house or building. This would include both interior and exterior painting for residential and commercial structures. I'm well-versed in all painting and staining applications, products and methods. Questions I couldn't answer would be primarily those related to automotive, industrial or marine painting.


I've been painting professionally for over 26 years and I've owned my own business, Stelzer Painting Inc., for more than 16 years now. We specialize in interior & exterior painting for residential & commercial clients, re-paints, remodels & new construction. I'm fully licensed, bonded and insured. I have hundreds of referrals from past customers, an A+ rating through the BBB, and an A rating on Angie's List.

-Better Business Bureau, A+ Rating -Angie's List, A Rating -Construction Contractor's Board Member, (#202027). -PDX Advisory Group Member. -Licensed General Contractor -Licensed RRP Firm

Publications -Blogger -Hubspot -Various social platforms.

-High School Diploma -Studied at Mt. Hood Community College, Lane Community College and University of Oregon. -Recently completed continuing education requirements for licensing through the Construction Contractor's Board. -RRP Certified for lead-based paint removal through the state of Oregon. -Although my Real Estate License has lapsed, I was a licensed Realtor for several years as well.

Awards and Honors
I've managed to maintain a perfect service record since beginning my business in 1998, with over 1,000 satisfied customers and no complaints. Professionally speaking, this is my proudest achievement.

Past/Present Clients
Richard Swails: (503) 636-7377 Mr. & Mrs. Scott: (360) 718-8676 Lonnie Tongate: (971) 645-7285 On my website,, I also have a link to my referral list, which contains several hundreds more.

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