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Painting varnished wood trim?

Posted by CurlyElle (My Page) on
Wed, Nov 16, 11 at 15:02


We are renovating a house with dated, varnished wood trim throughout. We'd like to paint the trim (BM White Dove).

Question: do we truly have to sand down all the trim throughout the house, or can we get away with painting over the varnish?

The guys who are refinishing our hardwood floors told us that we could probably get away with doing an oil-based primer followed by latex paint WITHOUT sanding, but I don't want to regret this.

If we have no choice but to sand, what's the best way to go about it?

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Painting varnished wood trim?

Don't listen to the hardwood floor finishers. :)

The trim only needs to be clean and dull. That means wash it with Dirtex and a light sanding with #220 sandpaper, followed by a good vacuuming and then acrylic latex primer. BM Fresh Start is a good choice.

Since the trim is stained, you will need to caulk all gaps along walls/baseboard; casing trim and walls, casing trim and jambs, etc. Caulk after the primer has dried.

Apply two coats of your favorite acrylic enamel paint.

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