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Refinishing wood trim


 

Elaborate wood trim, especially in older houses, is a real asset because it looks great and performs the critical function of blending rooms together into a cohesive interior design. Unfortunately, itís difficult and ex pensive to replace, so most people refinish it instead. This usually involves removing old paint to expose the wood underneath, and then, applying a new finish. This job requires more elbow grease than carpentry skills. In fact, perseverance is probably the most important trait that you can bring to the job.


Step 1. The easiest and quickest way to remove paint from flat wood trim surfaces is to use a paint scraper. Be sure to keep the blade sharp, and use the tool on the pull stroke, not the push stroke. This tool wonít work on curved surfaces.

 

Step 2. Using a heat gun to remove paint doesnít require as much effort as a paint scraper, but it usually takes longer. Keep the tip of the gun as close to the paint as possible without burning the wood, and use a putty knife to scrape away the soft paint.

 

Step 3. Crevice tools, like this one with a triangular blade, are good for cleaning paint from deep joints. Use it carefully because you want to remove only the paint, not scrape away any of the wood. For the tool to work well, it must be sharpened frequently with a file.

 

 

 

 

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