Proper preparation is critical when painting woodwork—the touch-ups you do here will create the smooth surface you seek once it is painted.
- Fill in dents and rebuild chipped corners with wood filler.
- Use patching compound on scratches and smaller cracks.
- Sand the dry surface with 180-grit paper and wipe away the dust.
- Use a hand vacuum with a brush attachment to clean dust and debris from woodwork and door frames.
Tip: With contoured or intricate trim or molding, use a sanding sponge rather than sandpaper. The sponge gets at places the paper can't reach, resulting in a more uniformly smooth surface.
Bare woodwork: Use a latex or oil-based specialty primer that is formulated to block stains.