How Long Does It Take To Paint A Room 

How long does it take to paint a room including setting up, average time to paint a room, clean up time, painting time for different room sizes, and paint drying time.
Newly painted room blue paint A-frame wooden ladder

One of the things that will make a house feel like a home, especially for newly constructed homes, is the feel of every room freshly painted. This is also the case for homes that are looking to be revamped.

For a fresh couple coats of paint will give any room a truly new look and will cost homeowners almost nothing compared to having it done professionally, especially if they are looking to do it on their own. 

The foremost thing they need to know is how long it will take to paint each room in a home, depending on how small or large a particular room is. [toc]

Average Time To Paint A Room 

Couple painting room with paint brush and step ladder

The average bedroom size, which doesn’t include the biggest room in the house, or the main bedroom is around 432 square feet or 13 by 13 feet with a ceiling height of about 8 feet.

This is usually the size of most bedrooms in the country, making figuring out how much time is needed for the painting easier for people with this room size. Larger rooms tend to take longer time while smaller rooms will take less. 

Contrary to popular belief painting a wall is more than just painting the wall itself. It will require a few steps to ensure a prime painting surface, like prep time, priming the walls, and then painting it correctly. Although painting correctly will require more work, the result, in the end, will make it all worth it. 

Some other factors affecting paint time are how detailed the paint job will be and how many coats of paint a homeowner is looking to apply for a room. 

Setting Up Time for Painting

Setup time for painting room

The first step to wall painting is prepping the wall first. This step will include checking the walls for any pinholes or full-on fist-size holes to ensure that a smooth surface is available before the paint job. If there are no visible drywall repair jobs to be made, it is best to leave at least 10 minutes of nail hole filling for a room of around 432 square feet. 

Another essential step during prep work is wiping down the walls and the trim work with a damp rag to remove dust or grime for the tape to stick. This will acquire at least 10 minutes for a room of average size.

Once that is done, it will be more manageable to tape the floor, window, and door trim, plus cover outlets. Taping is a little bit harder than the former prep work and will require an average of 40 minutes or longer for people not used to doing it. 

The following prep step is sanding the walls smoothly. There are several ways to do it: manually with a sanding sponge or using a sanding pole to accelerate the process. An estimate for the whole sanding process is allowing 15 to 20 minutes to do it. 

The last prep step is laying out cloth on the floor and laying out the brush, rollers, paints, and paint trays to paint the whole room which will take 10 minutes. All in all, that is about 90 minutes of prep time or .208 minutes for every square foot covered. 

Cutting In (Outlining)

Outlining painting time

Cutting in or outlining in the painting process will involve a homeowner painting close or next to the ceiling with a precise hand to create a sharp line to cut corners where the walls morph with the ceiling.

Like the trim taping step in the prep time, cutting in time for an individual will depend on their skill level and will be easier the more experience they have with painting walls. 

Expert wall painters roughly need at least 20 minutes of cutting in time for an average-sized room, but this time will be longer for first-time painters. A time of 40 to 60 minutes should be expected for a first-time painter with cutting in the first coat and another 30 to 40 minutes for the second paint coating.  

Aside from cutting in the ceiling for a smooth-looking paint job, they will also need to cut in the trim areas like outlets and switches, and that job will take at least another 30 minutes. All in all, this is a job to do for about 140 minutes. 

Painting Time

Painting time for standard sized room

Painting or rolling out the walls with the roller is the easiest step if the first two steps are done right. This step in the painting process doesn’t require any skill or experience in wall painting to be good at. 

One critical skill to have in this step is remembering to check the work done every 3 feet of paint covered. This will ensure that any runs, sags, streaks, or light spots are corrected right away for a seamless paint job we know all homeowners want for their rooms. 

The average time for a person to paint a standard-size room is about 40 minutes, extending up to 80 minutes if the first two stops are not done efficiently. 

Clean Up Time 

After the paint rolls out will come to the next and final step, which is clean up and touch up. Clean-up and touch-up will require pulling the tape off the trim, folding the drop cloths, cleaning up the paint spots, putting the outlet covers back on, and inspecting the room for a second time for any light spots or spots missed during the painting process. 

This time allotted for the final step will vary and depend on how thorough the paint job is during the first steps. On average, around 30 to an hour is given for this final step, from touch-up to clean-up, to ensure that the room is hundred percent back together. 

Time Required To Paint a Small Room

Now that we know how much duration it would take per step to paint an average-sized room, it is now time to figure out how long it will take to paint a specific room.

A small room is roughly the size of a children’s room which is around 86 square feet, with a twin bed, a study table, and chair, and a wardrobe to fit the space, and it will take no time to complete the paint job for such a room size. 

Set-up time for a small room will take a shorter time. What was 80 minutes of set-up time for a bigger space can be cut to 20 or 30 minutes.

Cutting in and outlining can be cut in an hour, while the painting time can also be shorter. This is also the same for clean-up time which will be faster because of the smaller space. 

How Much Time to Paint One Bedroom

The time estimated for painting one bedroom will depend on how big the room is. The bigger the room, the longer paint time it will require. In contrast, smaller spaces will require less time to paint

Bedrooms can range from a size of 2.8 by 2.5 meters to a room 4 by 4 meters, and painting these room sizes will take around 5 hours plus preparation time. If the homeowner wants to cut this time in half, the best way is to hire professional painters. 

Time for painting a room will also depend if a homeowner is painting the whole room or only just a section of it. It will also be harder to paint a room from a dark to a light color, requiring an additional step of priming the wall to get it ready for the paint job. See the best bedroom paint colors here for more ideas.

Amount of Time Needed to Paint the Living Room? 

Empty living room with nylon carpet fireplace gray paint recessed lights

One of the rooms in a house that will take a long time to paint other than the bedroom is the living room because of its usually bigger size since multiple people access it at one time.

Aside from its bigger size, most living rooms are outside the traditional square room template. It can be shaped irregularly with multiple corners making prepping work, paint job, and clean-up time longer than expected. 

Living room painting can take around 4 to 8 hours, depending on its size, and knowing the measurement is essential for time allocation, necessary if the homeowners are in a time crunch. Visit our living room paint colors for design inspiration.

Time Length for Painting a 10×10 Room? 

A 10 by 10 feet room is around 100 square feet, and depending on the painter’s painting experience, the work will take about 6 to 10 hours, from prep time to cleaning. 

This time will not include the drying time needed for the paint job, and this time will usually be dictated by the paint instruction itself and how many paint coats a homeowner did on their walls.

The best thing to ensure faster drying time is to opt for quality paints with an eggshell gloss finish. Unlike paints with a higher sheen, the eggshell will not highlight imperfections in the paint job as much. 

Time Requirement to Paint a 12×12 Room?

Painting a 12 by 12 feet or 144 square feet room will take longer than painting a 100 square feet room. If a hundred square feet room takes about 6 to 10 hours to paint, excluding drying time, it will take roughly the same time plus a few hours to paint a 12 by 12 feet space. 

One pro-tip to painting is checking between each paint coat. One method to do it efficiently is to use a flashlight to inspect the painted surface for any dripping, roller flecks, or other painting imperfections. A sponge on hand for any touch-up is also great for patching imperfections. 

How Many Days Needed to Paint the Entire House Interior? 

A whole house interior takes about four days to paint, depending on whether the homeowners are hiring a three-person crew to have their house painted professionally. If a homeowner is looking to do the paint job for their interior, it will take longer and can even take up to two weeks. 

Speeding this process up is almost impossible, but one way to do it is by making sure that each step, from setting up to cutting in time, is done correctly.

A three-story house will also need a lot more time to paint compared to a two-bedroom apartment, and factors such as these will affect painting time considerably. 

What is the Painting Time Needed for a Single Wall? 

Depending on whether a homeowner is looking to paint a blank canvas or redecorate a home by giving it a fresh paint job, painting an interior will require multiple coats of paint.

In a paint job, the first coat will take longer to lay; in contrast, the second coat will be easier, thoroughly saturate the color, and make it more potent for any desired effect. 

The paint job, without the prep and the clean-up time, will take at least 45 minutes to an hour, depending on the homeowner’s satisfaction. This time can be cut in half if a professional house painter is involved. 

How Long Will Paint Need to Dry In A Room?

Paint drying time

One of the most prolonged processes with a paint job is waiting for the paint to dry, especially if multiple paint coats are involved in the process. Several factors will affect drying time, one of which is the type of paint used. 

If oil-based paint is used in painting the walls, it will dry to touch in about 6 to 8 hours and be ready for the second coating in 24 hours.

For latex paints, it will be faster. It will be dry to touch by an hour and prepared for another recoating in 4 hours. Looking at the manufacturer’s label and directions will be more accurate for dry and recoat times. 

How Much Time To Air Out Room After Painting?

Although paint can dry in a day, a homeowner cannot use the room within the day, even if the walls have dried. Generally water based or (latex) paints will air out faster than oil based (alkyd) paints. This is due to latex paints emitting fewer chemicals than alkyd paints.

The best way to ensure that no harmful vapors will be inhaled by the people living in the house is to leave the room to air out for a period of 2 to 3 days. This air-out time will also ensure that the indoor air quality is acceptable. 

While painting one can open windows and use window mounted box fans to help eliminate unsafe air quality levels.

For more related content visit our guide to enamel vs latex paint here.

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