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How to Fix Paint Drips

Added/Modified on December 24, 2016
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When painting a woodworking project, one of the most frustrating problems that can occur is when you have a paint drip that you don’t catch in time to fix. Paint drips are usually caused by applying too much paint to your project at one time, typically from an overloaded paint brush.

If you catch the drip while the paint is still relatively wet, you can probably brush out the drip. If the paint begins to dry, though, additional brushing may cause more of a problem than if you had left it alone.

If the paint drip is nearly dry, you can lightly dab off the excess paint with a clean cloth or paper towel. This will leave behind a blemish, but we’ll address that in a moment. If the paint drip is completely dry, try lightly scraping down the drip with a scraper, clean razor blade or 5-in-1 tool.

After you’ve removed the raised portion of the drip, be certain that the paint is completely dry and then try sanding out the remaining blemish with 220-grit sandpaper. Sand only in the direction of the drip – if you try to sand back-and-forth, the paint will tend to gum up or flake away, and you’ll have a bigger blemish. Take care to sand only the blemish, avoiding the surrounding paint.

Once you’re satisfied that the drip has been addressed as best you can, apply another top coat or two of paint, and the blemish should be barely noticeable.

The biggest thing to keep in mind when attempting to repair a paint drip is to be patient. If you work methodically and carefully, your repair should be successful.

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