As the resident “paint/auto body” expert at my work I often get questions from fellow staff and students on “How long does it take to paint a room?”  Much like anything that has to do with time and space, my answer is usually “it depends”.   Planning your painting projects the right way can take careful planning, if time is an issue there are several factors that you must look at before determining how long it will take you to paint.

Let’s take a look at these factors and help you better estimate your painting time.

Using the Right Tools

Utilizing the right tools is essential for painting a room in the shortest amount of time possible.  If you are looking to tackle any size project we highly recommend investing in a quality paint sprayer as this will cut your time down substantially.  Below is our pick for the best paint sprayer on the market.

Best All-Purpose Paint Sprayer

How much prep work needs to be done?

Perhaps the most time consuming part of painting a room is the initial

how long does it take to paint a room

Moving furniture can be very time consuming and may require extra help

prep work that needs to be done before painting a room.   If you are painting an area with large furniture,  lots of accessories you may need to hire or bring help to move these objects. If you are painting a room with ceramics, such as a bathroom, you will spend most of your time taping before painting.

Once you remove everything from the room, you must now prep the rest of the room by covering up anything that doesn’t need painted and to use your painter’s tape liberally around the room.

How large is the room I am painting?

Perhaps the most obvious factor in painting a room is what the actual size of the room is.   If you are planning to paint a 10’ x 10’ small bedroom you will obviously take less time than if you are painting a 25’ x 15’ large living room with high ceilings.   Determining the size of your room is easy and will help you better prepare yourself for how much paint you need to buy.    By using a tape measure for all areas that you will tape you can plan your attack better.  Once you figure that out, you can enter it in a paint calculator like this one to find out how much paint that you need.

Paint Sprayer vs.  Roller?

As our site is traditionally aimed towards readers are using a paint sprayer, this is the one part of the painting job that you can cut down the most time on.   For obvious reasons a quality paint sprayer will work much quicker than a traditional roller.    With that being said, if you don’t know how to properly use a paint sprayer, you could add a lot of time to your projects by using a paint sprayer incorrectly.  It is important to practice before you spray as you will decrease the time exponentially with good paint sprayer technique.

Do I need a ladder?

Anytime you need to use a ladder or scaffold you will increase the amount

painting high ceilings

This room will obviously take a while to paint correctly

of time that you will need to paint.  A ladder and a scaffold will limit your mobility and will make it difficult to cover a large area in little time.    A ladder may be necessary when you are painting a high ceiling, but it also is wise to have so that you can reach other hard to reach areas of your painting project.

What type of paint am I using?

The quality of paint may be the most important factor when determining how long does it take to paint a room because of the amount of drying time and repainting that may be done.  It is always wise to invest in a good paint as this will help cut down on the project.  Unfortunately the best paint will also cost you the most amount of money, so if you are painting on a budget, it is wise to spend up a little if you are planning on painting an essential piece of your home.

Who is painting?

There are a number of factors that play a role on how fast a room can be painted.   The actual person painting the room is a very important factor to look at because we are all built differently.   The more mobile a person is and one with good hand eye coordination will obviously paint faster than someone who moves slow and must repaint several areas.  Also a skilled painter can usually zip through an area because of the amount of practice that they have painting on a regular basis.

Are there any adverse weather conditions?

While we typically shoot for paint conditions to be in the 60-80 degree range, there are simply times that we will not have the best temperature for painting.   Humidity, dew point, wind and other conditions play a huge role in outside painting.  If you are painting a room inside in a controlled environment you can typically expect drying conditions based on your paint instructions.

How good (or bad) are the surfaces that I am painting?

While this may also be considered part of the prep work for painting a room, the condition of what you are painting plays a huge role in how long it will take you to paint a room.  The surface of your wall will be a major factor that you must consider when you are painting.   If you are painting new or fairly new drywall you can expect a quick painting time as there are usually very little issues that have an effect on your overall painting time.   If you are painting metal,  brick, stucco, or a different type of material you might add time to your painting as many of these take several repaints to look right.

What type of paint spray gun am I using?

If you have chosen the paint sprayer route over traditional rollers and

Conventional Sprayers are used frequently for interior jobs

Conventional Sprayers are used frequently for interior jobs

brushes you will cut down a ton of time in your overall painting.   Even furthermore the type of paint sprayer that you use can also cut down your time.  Airless, HVLP,  Battery powered, there are many choices with each having it’s pros and cons.

Many paint sprayers have small canisters that hold the paint that may need reloaded, while other paint sprayers let you spray non-stop for a long period of time.

How good do I want my paint job to be?

With the proper tools, primer and paint almost anyone can make a room look professional in a short amount of time.   Painting with care and passion is important because whether you are painting your own room or someone else’s, the end result will be how you will be judged.  It is wise to error on the side of caution and purchase good paint and repaint an extra time or two if you want the job done right.

How Long Does it Take to Paint a Room- Conclusion

When determining how long does it take to paint a room, you can use the factors above to figure out how long you will paint.  Typically to make a room look great, I would give two days of painting just to be sure.   Day one will be the prepping, priming and first coat of paint while day two will be to repaint and go over your room with a fine tooth comb to make sure that it is done right.