Here's the thing: No matter how you cut it, painting a room or - better yet - an entire home - is not an easy task. There will always be a mess or complications - and inevitably a sore muscle or two.
But many companies out there sympathize with your pain and are making whole-hearted attempts to ease the process of painting by creating user-friendly tools to help simplify the job. But how do you know what's worth the purchase?
Here's a bit of assistance - I recently had the opportunity to review the SMART Edge Roller by Wagner (designed for tackling trim and edges). Here's my breakdown.
SMART Edge Roller by Wagner
Here is the text of Wagner's actual product description for the SMART Edge Roller:
The SMART Edge Roller is designed to make cutting-in around windows, doors, trim and corners fast and easy. It provides a controlled and continuous flow of paint from the handle to the roller, eliminating the need for messy, dripping brushes and paint trays. Plus, there is no more taping required.
The key is the Twist and Trim Tool which has a Trim Guard and 3 micro brushes for painting right up to the edge of the surface, giving you a consistent finish for your entire painting project. The guard prevents the roller from touching the trim. The Trim Guard quickly folds away for regular rolling. The paint tube holds 6 fl oz. and its 3" x 3/8" roller allows you to edge approximately 96 linear feet in a single fill. Trim a 12' x 12' room in approximately 2-3 fills.
What was my experience with the SMART Edge Roller?
It comes fully assembled, which is a nice change for most "complex" tools. It can be a bit tricky at first to figure out all the parts.
Filling the tool with paint is a breeze, and it's compact size gets into small spaces easily. It's not all easy, though - you do still have to pay close, careful attention to the angle at which you're painting and moving the tool to ensure you are getting a straight line at your trim.
(A process that many people casually and carelessly ignore when painting over painter's tape.)
Also, you have to be careful that the outside of the trim guard doesn't get coated in paint through the process - as that can cause smudging in areas you'd otherwise prefer to keep clean (I made that careless mistake twice as I got lost in the painting process). Oversaturation is an issue, as well. Commonly we want to coat as much paint as possible to get the job done quicker - but over saturating the roller in this case can cause the tool to stick a bit and thus be less effective.
The final negative? If you don't have a utility sink and/or threaded faucet, clean up isn't simple and it does require much more effort than simply cleaning an edging brush. Though the time you save in not needing to tape off each edge is probably worth the extra clean up time.
Overall? This product delivers on its promises, and thus it may very well be my new favorite painting tool. I have a feeling my beloved painter's tape is going to start gathering dust…
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