How to Cover Dark Wall Paint

Dark paint on walls can be tricky to cover if you’re opting for a lighter paint colour. Even going from one dark colour to another is no guarantee that the old colour won’t come through.

Luckily, some patience and the right tools and equipment can help.

You’re going to need a quality primer, quality paint, and adequate time. Several coats of paint and primer will be required when painting over dark colours.

These coats will be best kept thin to lessen the risk of imperfections and hiring a paint sprayer can really help here.

We have everything you need to know below:


How to paint over dark walls with a paint sprayer


  1. Prepare the room for painting

When painting, it is a good idea to cover all of your furnishings and ensure that potential damage is kept to a minimum.

Cover any furniture which can’t be removed from the room with sheeting and put covers down on your flooring too. Secure this with tape.

Talking of tape, use high-quality decorator’s tape to protect where the wall meets the door frame, skirting boards, and ceiling. This will be easier than going over any mistakes with white paint later.


  1. Prep the walls using a sander

You want a smooth, flat surface when painting. This will give you the best results.

So, fill in any holes or marks using filler, wait until it dries, then sand back using a sander. Remove picture hooks, wall plugs, and furniture fastened to the wall, fill the holes, and replace them when the painting is all done.

If you previously used a silk emulsion, or have just removed wallpaper, you might want to hire a drywall sander to finish your walls, ensuring the surface is properly prepared for the new paint. Making the surface slightly rough will give the paint something to adhere to.

This will also tackle any hard-to-spot imperfections, such as flaking paint.

Then, you want to clean the walls. This will ensure the paint sticks. Use a duster or vacuum cleaner first, then wipe the walls down with a damp cloth and leave to dry.

Dust, grease, and general dirt can be hard to see but needs to be removed. Otherwise, it could mean you’re left with gaps in the paint or bubbles, as the paint can’t adhere to the wall.

When sanding, painting, and cleaning, ensure to wear eye and breathing protection, as well as gloves and disposable coveralls for your clothing and skin. All PPE and safety equipment can be purchased from Speedy online and in local service centres.


  1. Prime

Covering light paint with dark paint is much easier than covering dark paint. You will definitely need a primer when covering dark colours, to avoid needing to use multiple layers of white paint to colour block and then your end colour.

This applies no matter how high-quality your topcoat is.

When covering dark paint, choose a white primer. Quality brands will contain more binders and pigments which cover the dark colour quicker and easier, so invest here.

Two coats of primer will be best. Multiple thin coats will give you the most even finish, though. Allow it to completely dry before painting.


  1. Layer it up with a paint sprayer

You want to avoid painting paint on really thick. This just increases the likelihood of imperfections and bumps.

There is a fine balance between choosing good quality rollers and paint brushes which will give you good coverage, and just compensating for this with thick layers.

The best option? Hire a paint sprayer. This will give you thin layers of paint which you can work on and build up. There will be no brush marks, no bubbles, and no paintbrush bristles/pet hair/dust left behind on the walls.

The more drastic the dark-to-light transformation, the more layers will be needed. This can be time-consuming, so a paint sprayer could really speed this up.




Just keep going until the dark colour is completely gone.




Our Speedy blog also has tips on how to paint your walls a dark colour, as well as how to paint a garden fence or even paint your patio slabs for summer.

Whatever you need help and advice with, trust the Speedy blog to have it covered.

You’ll then find all the power tools and hire equipment you need all in one place. Why not open a Speedy account online or visit us instore for all your tool hire needs?

Speedy has more than 200 local service centres across the nation, hire counters in selected B&Qs and nationwide 4-hour delivery. It has never been easier to hire the tools and equipment you need.


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