What is a Nap Roller?

Painting Tools of the Trade – Nap Roller

Don’t start a project without the right equipment

You could be the greatest painter in the world, but if you don’t have the right equipment your job won’t turn out the way you want it to. And you will spend a lot more time and frustration achieving a result you’re not satisfied with. That’s why it’s so important to assess a project in advance and gather the necessary tools before starting. To help introduce you to some of those tools we are writing about them one at a time. In this installment we will introduce you to the nap roller:

What is a Nap Roller?

You have probably seen a nap roller before. It is essentially a roller connected to a handle that is covered with a fibrous material of varying thickness/quality. The rollers come in many shapes and sizes with some having longer rollers or handles and some shorter. The type of roller you use will depend on the space you’re painting and the goal of your project.

What is a Nap Roller Used for?

Nap rollers serve two purposes. First, they allow you to cover large areas quickly compared to any kind of paint brush. Depending on the size of your roller you may be able to cover an area of a foot or wider with a single roll. And since it is a roller it is easy to cover a lot of space quickly. The other advantage is that nap rollers apply an even, consistent coat of paint. Bushes leave tell-tale strokes that may not be appropriate for interior walls. When you use a nap roller there is no evidence of the human hand.

hand painting wall

How do I Choose the Right Nap Roller?

There are a lot of factors to consider when picking out a nap roller, from the size of the roller to the type of nap. There are also factors you might not think of. For instance, if you’re painting a ceiling you will want to use a lightweight apparatus so that you don’t tire out quickly. In many cases the roller you choose will come down to personal preferences and the unique demands of the project, but there are some guidelines worth following:

  • Use a 1/4-inch nap for smooth surfaces like new walls, ceilings, trim, and wood doors.
  • Use a 3/8-inch nap for walls with a light texture.
  • Use a 1/2-inch nap for walls with a medium texture like concrete and plaster.
  • Use a 3/4-inch nap for surfaces with a rough texture.
  • Use a 3/8 or 1/2-inch nap as an all-purpose roller cover.

Find Your Nap Roller at Watson Coatings

At Watson Coatings you can find a selection of quality nap rollers along with all the paint and coatings you need to complete any kind of job. Feel free to contact us if we can answer any questions about our products, or if you have painting questions of any kind.



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