What Do You Do With a Roller Brush Between Coats?

Roller brushes offer many advantages over paintbrushes for painting trim, yet many homeowners are unfamiliar with how best to care for and utilize this tool.

Short breaks require just a quick rinse with clean water; longer breaks may necessitate using solvent-based cleaners instead. Although this process is straightforward, it’s essential that employees know the correct procedure for doing it.

What to do with your roller between coats

Cleaning paint brushes and rollers after every project can be an unpleasant chore, yet essential – be it painting the house or giving your deck a fresh coat of staining. Unfortunately, it’s easy to become immersed in a task until too late – leaving tools crusted in lint-filled goo that requires extensive cleanup efforts if left too long before being brought back into use using some simple hacks. Luckily, making this task more manageable should prove far simpler than expected!

First, choose a roller with the appropriate nap length for your project. Extremely smooth surfaces can handle short nap rollers while more textured walls require longer nap rollers with 3/4-inch nap length (typically). In addition to purchasing this tool, also invest in a sturdy paint tray with ribbed bottom to evenly distribute paint across surfaces.

After you are finished for the day, be sure to protect your roller and brush by wrapping them in tin foil or cellophane before leaving them to dry for at least 24 hours – this will prevent their surfaces from drying out too much, which could result in them becoming brittle and flaky.

Once it’s time to use your roller or brush again, simply take off the tin foil, squeeze out any air pockets, and store in an appropriate container – such as a freezer bag or plastic grocery/garbage bag; alternatively if painting for an extended period, using a refrigerator is an ideal way to do this.

Prep a roller or brush by using an old golf club brush to scrub away crusty paint crust with plastic bristles from an old golf club brush. Its plastic bristles will easily scrape away most of it without harming either your paintbrush or roller cover, while a lint roller is another great tool for quickly and effortlessly removing any unwanted lint from new roller covers.

Henrique suggests wiping down oil-based paint brushes or rollers with odorless mineral spirits before storing. A clean solvent will keep paint from hardening too quickly, potentially ruining bristles. Once it’s time to reuse your roller or brush again, simply wipe it down again using this same cleaner then give it another quick dip into solvent before getting started again.

Wrapping your roller

In between coats, instead of cleaning your paintbrush and roller between applications, try covering them. Make sure the air can’t escape to prevent paint drying out or hardening; plastic wrap works but aluminium foil creates an airtight seal for maximum effectiveness. Alternatively, place them in the fridge for several hours for optimal freshness!

If you need to take an extended break from painting, be sure to cover your rollers and brushes in an airtight material such as cellophane. I’ve heard people also use paper towels or newspapers – anything that lets moisture in while keeping out air is key – this is especially relevant if using oil-based polyurethane paint, which dries through evaporation rather than adhesion; keeping solvents out of the air will slow the drying process while prolonging its durability.

Put the brush or roller in a plastic bag; however, this method only lasts 24 hours and doesn’t prevent condensation which can ruin paint. Freezing them may work too; just remember to let them thaw before starting painting again.

Store the brush in a jar of water similar to how you’d store a piece of fruit; this will prevent its bristles from drying out and becoming brittle over time, helping ensure its long-term functionality. If your brush is particularly expensive, this method will help preserve its quality for many years ahead.

Proper care of paint tools is vital to getting the desired results from them, and these simple hacks will ensure their maximum life and functionality. So whether it’s between coats on a large project or just finishing off one small room, follow these easy tips to preserve and protect your precious equipment!

Cleaning your roller

Keep your paint roller or brush in top condition by washing it at least every two hours and at the conclusion of every painting session, soaking it in warm water if applicable; water-based paint makes this easier; otherwise check your can label for specific cleaning instructions.

Use an old rag or stiff bristled brush to remove dried bits of paint from both your paint tray and roller frame. Once clean, rinse both with warm soapy water before leaving them to dry naturally.

If you need to leave for more than a couple of hours, consider covering your tools with aluminum foil to prevent crusty paint from forming and keep them ready to use when you return to work on your project. Doing this can also keep brushes and rollers fresh for when you come back!

synthetic brushes should be cleaned in hot soapy water immediately following use to avoid paint seeping into the base or ferrule and seeping into its bristles or ferrule. Once clean, gently comb with a brush comb to straighten bristles before placing in its protective keeper.

An inexpensive lint roller paint roller can be an invaluable asset on any DIY task, but you should ensure it is kept clean on a regular basis to prevent loose particles of drywall dust and dirt from collecting in it. Placing it inside a plastic bag will protect both yourself and the rough surface of the lint.

Be wary not to submerge the lint roller in paint as doing so can damage its bristles, mat down the brush and make future cleanup harder. If working on an extensive project where frequent dipping will be required, consider investing in a paint tray with lid that limits exposure time of your brush into the can.


When not painting, it is crucial that your roller brush and paint canisters are stored properly to avoid drying out and allow you to pick up where you left off quickly when starting another project. Simply store both in an airtight container in a cool environment; this will keep the bristles from absorbing too much paint while helping preserve its quality and maintain an easy workflow.

An ideal solution is a large zip-loc style bag. This will trap all of the air and prevent your brush or roller from drying out – this method works especially well when working with water-based paints; however, be wary when using oil-based ones as these may dry out more rapidly when not exposed to air.

If you plan on leaving your paintbrush or roller alone for the day, try using cellophane instead of plastic wrap as this will protect the bristles from drying out while still enabling you to continue work where you left off on return. This method ensures you can pick right back up where you left off when returning the next day!

Alternately, you could try soaking your brush or roller in a solvent-based cleaner like mineral spirits to eliminate any leftover paint and make cleaning simpler. Simply pour some solvent into a jar or other container and work the paintbrush through it before rinsing with water and allowing to dry before storing for future use.

There is an array of paint brushes and rollers on the market. When selecting one to meet your individual job requirements, it is key that you select one with care. If painting walls, for example, using a flat-topped brush will result in an even finish while for more intricate surface projects you may opt for one with slanted bristles for corners and edges to provide clean lines and edges.