Choosing the right roller cover

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In most cases, you will be working with either flat, matte or eggshell paint. The surface you are painting will play a part in determining your choice of nap. The nap is the length of the fabric that sticks up from the surface similar to the pile in carpet. A good quality roller cover will hold more paint and provide faster coverage. The combination of a good quality paint and a good quality cover will give you your best job. A poor quality or inexpensive cover will allow air bubbles, missed spots and leave behind lint.

We recommend either a 3/8″ nap or a 1/2″ nap for most home painting projects. We will be happy to help you make the choice based on the paint you are working with.

A quick note about the frame that you are using. A good quality frame has five wires which helps the cover to maintain a nice round shape. An inexpensive frame may hold up for a project but will lose its roundness over time causing poor paint flow.

A good quality cover will have a core that is cardboard impregnated with a resin for strength and durability. A good quality cover will also have more fibers per square inch just like a good quality carpet. The more fibers per square inch the better the cover and the coverage.

Covers are either woven or knitted. A woven cover will ensure the most lint-free project. A good quality cover will last you through an entire project and you will usually need one cover per color per person painting. Thus, a good cover will actually save you money.

In the above test panel, Benjamin Moore Regal Select was used in both tests. One coat was applied. On the bottom panel a competitor’s good cover costing $3.69 was used and in the top panel, an Allpro Masterknit HD costing $3.59 was used. The lesser quality cover had spotty coverage and left fabric behind in the paint and actually cost more!

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