Solution for: Do-It-Yourself house painting

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Do-It-Yourself house painting

You will hear part of a radio programme about Do-It-Yourself house painting.

Speaker:     Good morning everyone, and welcome to our weekly series on home improvements.

Today’s programme is about Do-It-Yourself house painting ... There’s never been a better time for people who like to do their own interior house painting. Although people still lead very busy lives, thanks to the availability of various new DIY materials, you can now decorate your home in a more efficient and a more environmentally-friendly way.

In two thousand and nine alone, approximately fifty-three million litres of the paint that was sold in the UK were left untouched - that’s enough to fill twenty one Olympic-sized swimming pools.

It's easy to overestimate how much paint you’ll need to decorate your room if you use guesswork. And if you know exactly how much paint is needed, you avoid unnecessary waste. There are automatic paint calculators available now - most of the major paint manufacturers provide them - look on their websites, or just google ‘paint calculator’ and see what comes up. Then simply measure the circumference and height of the room in metres, enter this into the calculator along with the type of surface you're painting, and it will tell you how many litres of paint you’ll need.

But if you do end up with leftover paint, you can donate it to an organisation like Community RePaint. They will take the paint from you and redistribute it to local charities and voluntary organisations, so it goes to a good home. You can find more information about Community RePaint on communityrepaint - all one word - dot org dot uk. 

Speaker:     Another way of avoiding paint wastage is to check you're completely happy with your colour choice before starting to paint. For example, you can get a small sample of the colour you’re thinking of using, then paint a board and move it around the room, so you can see how it looks against your furnishings, and in different lights. Also, it’s always better to buy high quality paints, because you get what you pay for. If you buy cheap paint you might need to apply two or three coats to achieve the same coverage that you’d get from one coat of a good-quality paint. You could also spend a week on a job that could have been done in a day or two. And consider the environment. Most paint manufacturers now sell water-based paints that don’t contain harmful chemicals or give off harmful odours, so get one of these. You can also buy paint that’s packaged in recyclable containers. There’s a lot more choice than there used to be.

You can only do a good job, which will last, if you prepare the surfaces thoroughly before painting. In fact, in many ways if you want to do a professional-looking job, this is more important than the painting itself. If there are any cracks or patches of loose plaster, painting over them won’t solve the problem. Take the plaster out and fill the holes, allowing enough time for the new plaster to dry. And you won’t get a smooth finish if the walls are dusty or greasy, so washing with water isn’t enough. Use a solution of decorator’s soap and rinse well with warm water afterwards.

When you're ready to paint, we suggest you use a medium-pile roller for walls and ceilings. A lot of people tend to use short-pile rollers, but these give a patchy finish, and that wastes paint and time. Similarly, long-pile rollers can create a thick, textured effect, which looks messy. The same goes for brushes. The stronger the bristles, the easier they are to wash and reuse. And as you’ve chosen a water-based paint, clean your brushes with cold water, because it’s more energy-efficient that way. As you're decorating, keep transferring small amounts of paint into a tray and keep topping it up when you need to. This reduces the chance of it being contaminated by dust and pieces of dirt ... And finally, water-based paint doesn’t have a lingering smell, so that's not an issue any more, but it’s air flow rather than heat that helps the paint dry quicker, so to help finish the job in the quickest time leave your doors and windows open. The faster the paint is dry and the job finished, the quicker you can start enjoying your room!

In tomorrow’s programme I’ll be giving some advice ...

Questions 1-4

Choose the correct letter, A, B or C.

1    According to the speaker, why is it a good time for D-l-Y painting?

A There are better products available now.

B Materials cost less than they used to.

C People have more free time than before.
Answer: A    Locate  Listen from here


2    What happened in 2009 in the UK?

A A record volume of paint was sold:

B A large amount of paint was wasted.

C There was a major project to repaint public buildings.
Answer: B    Locate  Listen from here


3    What does the speaker say about paint quantity?

A It’s not necessary to have exact room measurements.

B It’s better to overestimate than to underestimate.

C An automatic calculator can be downloaded from the Internet.
Answer: C    Locate  Listen from here


4    What does Community RePaint do?

A It paints people’s houses without payment.

B It collects unwanted paint and gives it away.

C It sells unused paint and donates the money to charity.
Answer: B    Locate  Listen from here


Questions 5-6

Choose TWO letters, A-E.

What TWO pieces of advice does the speaker give about paint?

A Don’t buy expensive paint.

B Test the colour before buying a lot.

C Choose a light colour.

D Use water-based paint.

E Buy enough paint for more than one application.
5. Answer: B OR D IN EITHER ORDER    Locate  Listen from here
6. Answer: B OR D IN EITHER ORDER    Locate  Listen from here

Questions 7-8

Choose TWO letters, A-E.

What TWO pieces of advice does the speaker give about preparation?

A Replace any loose plaster.

B Don’t spend too long preparing surfaces.

C Use decorators’ soap to remove grease from walls.

D Wash dirty walls with warm water.

E Paint over cracks and small holes.
7. Answer: A OR C IN EITHER ORDER    Locate  Listen from here
8. Answer: A OR C IN EITHER ORDER    Locate  Listen from here

Questions 9-10

Choose TWO letters, A-E.

What TWO pieces of advice does the speaker give about painting?

A Put a heater in the room.

B Wash brushes in cold water.

C Use a roller with a short pile.

D Apply paint directly from the tin.

E Open doors and windows.
9. Answer: B OR E IN EITHER ORDER    Locate  Listen from here
10. Answer: B OR E IN EITHER ORDER    Locate  Listen from here

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