Conflicting contractors - painting and flooring

NorthlutMay 24, 2012

We've received estimates from three painters and five flooring people (two carpet installers and three hardwood installers, for different parts of our house). Universally, the painters said to do the flooring first because the painters can easily keep paint off the floor ("we do it all the time, on almost every job"), and the flooring installers will invariably ding up the walls and baseboards, requiring further painting.

The flooring installers universally said to have the painting done first, because their guys are "really good," will do minimal scuffing to walls and trim, and the painters will surely get paint on the brand new floor. Two also used a line along the lines of "builders paint first and put in the floors later, and they know what they're doing."

So, who to believe????

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Do the floors first. Reason: It is easier to remove paint from finished wood than it is to remove paint from unfinished wood.

If it were me, I would put two coat on the floor, then cover them before painting, then do the last coat.


    Bookmark   May 24, 2012 at 12:49AM
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The wood floor is prefinished, so it's just installation, no finishing on-site. There is also carpet going in, which is of course very hard to remove paint from. But the painters tell tales of the carpet guys coming in with huge rolls and scraping them against the walls on the way in, making it necessary to re-paint large areas anyway.

    Bookmark   May 24, 2012 at 1:20AM
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Christopher Nelson Wallcovering and Painting

Take the painters word. If they get paint where it is not supposed to be, it is their responsibility to clean it up. Floor guys and carpet guys WILL danage new paint. I have seen it hundreds of times.

    Bookmark   May 24, 2012 at 4:13AM
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Yup. The painters are asking for their easiest thing, which intuitively would be the harder (to have to cover new floors). If the work of covering new floors is easier to a painter than not worrying about the floors and slopping all over, then clearly they've seen lots of scuffs that have needed repair.

    Bookmark   May 24, 2012 at 11:32AM
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Carpet installers often scratch walls.

Decent hardwood floor installers seldom scratch walls.

If base molding is changed, often painting needs to be done first---before installing the base molding.

So, what to do first is more dependent on which job is being done.

Wood floors---paint first. That also solves the base molding situation.

Carpet first, paint, base molding.

    Bookmark   May 24, 2012 at 11:47AM
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I bet your painter will agree to pay for all damages done to the floor and carpet. they have to guarantee it everyday. Now ask those floor guys to sign, that they will pay for any painting from scuffs, and nicks that they make on finished walls and you will quickly learn which way you should go

    Bookmark   May 24, 2012 at 11:25PM
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In this case it doesn't matter (but I'd let the painters go last so there's no reason to come back and touch up after someone else).

For floors that are being refinished (or finished) on site, I let the floor guys go first since there will be some bumps in walls and baseboard, and some fine dust on the walls, windows, etc. even if they clean afterward.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2012 at 9:14AM
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