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Daily Q&A: Any tips for picking interior paint?

What tips can you offer for picking a quality interior paint?

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Here are some tips from Consumer Reports about picking paint:

• Don't buy strictly by brand. Several Dutch Boy and Sherwin-Williams paints wound up near the bottom of Consumer Reports Ratings, despite being industry icons. And because manufacturers frequently tweak formulas to improve performance, cut costs, and comply with tougher regulations, the paint consumers loved last time might not perform as well this time around.

• Pick the right gloss level. Flat paint hides wall imperfections but tends to stain more easily; save it for low-traffic areas. High-sheen, semigloss paints are easy to clean but tend to dull in the process; use them on trim, windows and doors to provide an attractive contrast with walls and ceilings. Low-luster (aka satin and eggshell) paints combine the best of both categories and are the top choice for most areas.

• Look for specific strengths. Some paints are especially good at resisting fading in a sunny room, fending off mildew in a steamy bath, or shedding stains in a busy kitchen. Decide which attributes fit the room.

• Consider the store. Many top-scoring paints are sold at big-box stores. Home Depot and Lowe's tend to carry more paint than Walmart and Sears and often offer 5-gallon pails — a major money-saver on large projects.

For the full report and other consumer ratings visit: www.ConsumerReports.org

Question for the Consumer's Edge? Send it to ipenn@sptimes.com or twitter.com/consumers_edge. Questions are answered only in this daily feature.

Daily Q&A: Any tips for picking interior paint? 02/19/10 [Last modified: Friday, February 19, 2010 11:53am]
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