Problems with New Wall Paint Covering over Old Paint

I didn’t realize that there was no primer on a room in my house, and I have now put three coats of latex paint on it, and it still hasn’t covered well. What can I do? The main problem is brush marks. The room was originally white, and I painted it a orange/red color. -Joanne

Hi Joanne,

I’d start by changing from a brush to a roller, since a roller will do a much better job of covering a large wall area than a brush, and it’s a lot faster as well.

As for the paint, if the walls were previously painted white, there usually isn’t a problem covering over it with a different wall color without applying a primer if you use high quality paint. The same can’t be said for trying to paint over dark or brightly colored walls, which usually do require a stain blocking primer to prevent the old color from bleed through.

The problem could be with the paint you are using. It could be defective, old, or a low quality paint that doesn’t cover well.

Another option is to try priming an inconspicuous spot, let it dry, then paint over it to see if that helps. If so, go back and prime all the walls with a stain blocking primer. To allow your wall paint to cover better, have the paint store tint the primer so it’s a closer match to the finish paint.

Good luck with your project,


Further Information


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    • Hi, Angelita! Just as beauty is in the eye of the beholder, paint jobs and their results can be subjective. Whether you should go for the third coat of paint is entirely up to you — just be sure that, whichever decision you make, you can live with it. 🙂 Thanks for your question.


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