Always store paint in trays, which will catch any accidental spills and leaks. Leftover paint cans should be taped closed and then stored upside down to keep air from entering and affecting the paint—and don’t forget the cling wrap trick.
Old paint that has been stored a long time can become lumpy; you can strain it before use by filtering it through a piece of cheesecloth. Keeping small amounts of paint in large cans will inevitably result in the paint going off. Leftover paint should be decanted into smaller containers and then labelled with the colour (name and formulation number), date of use, manufacturer, surface sheen level and which room you used it in; this will allow you to use it for future touch-ups. Sometimes I drink more of that excellent top-shelf coffee just to get the good airtight tins it comes in for my excess paint store—extravagant, I know!
Getting rid of leftover paint
Don’t wash paint into the drainage system. After scraping as much paint from the brush or roller as possible, use a two-bucket system to wash brushes. The first bucket of water will remove most of the paint; the second bucket is for the rinse. Set the buckets of water aside for a day or so for the paint solids to settle to the bottom. The clear water from the buckets can then be poured onto the garden or lawn. The paint solids in the bottom of the bucket should be scraped onto some newspaper and disposed of in the household garbage.
A note about lead paint
You must take seriously the health dangers involved in removing lead paint. See details in Chapter 4, ‘Safety while you work’.
|REUSING OLD TURPS
You can recycle old turps by storing it in a safe place in an old container. Eventually the paint and the turps will separate and the paint solids will go to the bottom, leaving the rest of the turps relatively clean to be decanted and reused later. Be careful with storing this as it’s a HIGHLY volatile material.