Protecting Paint Brushes

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Dear NH,
I read somewhere that putting paintbrushes and rollers in plastic bags to keep them fresh when you need to stop painting. I wrapped mine and wasn't able to start painting again for a couple of days.

Well, I was surprised to find that the brushes were pretty dried out in spots and the roller cover was hopelessly stuck to the frame! Was I mad! Did I do something wrong?
CB from Durham, NH

Years ago I used the same technique and ran into the same problem. It's hard to seal a plastic bag well unless you put the entire roller or brush inside. Even then, the air in the bag still allows drying to take place. Wrapping a brush or roller in plastic wrap gives a better seal but is messy to deal with.

My own solution to this problem is aluminum foil. Foil is absolutely airtight when folded around a brush or rolled onto a roller and conforms to the shape perfectly, leaving minimal air for drying. A standard width piece cut about 12" long will cover either a brush or roller.

Does it work?

I have wrapped rollers covered with Kilz fast drying primer and had them still useable for up to a week! I prefer to use thicker heavy-duty foil, which is less likely to tear. It is only a few cents more per roll than regular foil but well worth it.

Not satisfied yet?

If you want those wet brushes and rollers to last even longer, throw... okay... place them in the refrigerator. Then their useful life can increase by weeks! In fact, I have found month-old rollers still useable, buried behind the veggies in my fridge. Not that it makes my wife very happy... but that's another story!

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