This guide outlines in brief how to prepare MDF trim for paint to achieve top quality finishes fast with emphasis on nail holes.
Chipping factory primer, puckered holes and glue strands caused by nail gun installation on MDF trim can cost painters thousands of dollars in short time and without them even knowing it. Here are a few tips to prevent wasting labor regardless where the MDF was manufactured or who or how it was installed.
Are any or all of the following visible?
If any of the above are visible then proceed with Step 2 If not, I typically do not recommend pre-sanding MDF unless unusual circumstances
In order to make certain labor is not wasted painting MDF a few steps should be followed before re-priming, painting, filling or caulking MDF trim. Factory primed MDF is not the ideal surface to produce top quality fine finishes.
Shop-vac all trim to ensure powdery sanding dust residue is removed. Removing any dust film will assist with filling nail holes and caulking efficiently
There are many variables associated with producing nice results on MDF, many of which can consume labor filling nail holes on MDF. Avoid the common scenario below
Various ways to complete the above tasks to maximize efficiency include:
Not following the above steps can lead to unwanted surprises after the first coat of finish paint is applied. Sanding the puckered area around the nail hole seen below will expose bare MDF and the 2nd coat of paint will not likely fully cover the exposed bare MDF.