June 03, 2020 2 min read

Having the right roller can make or break your project. But how do you know which one is right for you? Let us help give you some tips from the professionals.

Roller Sizing

Rollers can come in a variety of sizes. They range most commonly from 3 inch mini rollers to 18 inches long. Mini rollers are generally used for smaller areas such as closets, cabinets, or behind toilets. For the average wall, a 9-inch roller would suit perfectly. The larger rollers tend to be used on large projects and for commercial painting.

TIP: 9 Inch Roller is the most commonly used size

Roller Covers

The next thing to consider is the fiber the roller cover is made of. Roller covers are replaceable sleeves that fit your specific paint roller. They come in different materials, ranging from natural and synthetic fibers to foam. Each roller cover works best in specific applications.

Best Roller for Latex Paint

When using latex paint, a nylon or polyester roller cover tends to work best. The nylon or polyester material resists matting, making them the best option for water-based latex paint.

On the other hand, a wool roller is a good choice when working with oil-based paint. This is most ideal for painting on any surface that has texture.

    Best Roller for Semi Gloss Paint

    A woven roller cover is most ideal for high sheen paints such as the semi-gloss finish. The woven roller reduces the amount of lint as the fibers making up the roller are locked into the backing.

    Best Roller for Eggshell Paint

    A microfiber roller will give the smoothest finish possible for eggshell and other flat paint sheens. Microfiber tends to be very popular with contractors as they hold four times their volume of paint to help finish big projects efficiently.

    Foam or Microfiber Roller for Cabinets?

    A foam roller will help to get a smooth finish on a surface such as cabinets. Foam can hold a lot of paint, fitting for porous surfaces such as bare wood.

    Learn more about painting cabinets and trim here.

    Roller Naps

    A final thing to consider is the nap of the roller. The longer the nap, the more paint it can hold. But the flip side of that is that the longer the nap, the greater the risk of leaving behind a stipply, textured finish on your wall. Here is a general rule of thumb when choosing a nap length.

    • The duller the paint finish you're using, the thicker the nap you can get away with. Flat paint, like ceiling paint, is generally done with a 1/2" nap. 
    • Wall finishes like matte and eggshell are best applied with a 3/8" nap. 
    • Semi gloss finishes on doors and trim are best applied with a 1/4" nap.

    TIP: 3/8 nap tends to be the average size for most home projects.

    Paint Rollers Near You

    Aboff's has a wide variety of rollers to choose from. If you are still unsure, talk to your Aboff's Paint Specialist at any of our 33 locations.

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