Learn How to Use A Paint Roller on A Ceiling

Using a roller to paint, makes the job a little easier. Rollers can cover a wider area than that of a brush, and it eliminates the need to hook up a fancy sprayer to get the job done. But ceilings are a different job altogether.

Having to deal with high ceilings, sometimes very high, and enough turning and twisting to turn anyone into a contortionist, painting a ceiling can be a challenge.  But how effective is it to use a paint roller on a ceiling? It is quite effective.

How to Use A Paint Roller on A Ceiling

For the same reasons stated above covering a wide area is key to getting the job done quickly and effectively. And that is where a roller works best to do any paint. The key is to have the right equipment available to go with the roller that will make it a successful project.

How to Use A Paint Roller on A Ceiling

So here are some easy tasks to learn how to use a paint roller on a ceiling. Hope these ways can help you to do the job perfectly.

Type of Roller

When using a roller to paint the ceiling, one must find the right nap size to use to paint based on the ceiling surface or texture.  A ½-inch or a 3/8-inch nap is the perfect choice for most ceilings. A textured ceiling, like a popcorn ceiling, a 9/16-inch nap (a little thicker) is the better choice. 

Taping Edges

If the plan it to only paint the ceiling, make sure to tape off the edges where the ceiling meets the wall. If painting the whole room is the plan, then have at it, no need to tape the edges. But start with the ceilings first that way no risk of splatter on freshly painted walls. For taped off ceilings now is the time to grab the ladder and brush to paint those edges.  A roller will leave a different texture, so it is best to paint the edges with a brush first.

Don’t Forget the Drop Cloth

Make sure to cover the floor. Painting is a messy job, especially painting a ceiling. Use a drop cloth to cover the floor of the room from one side of the room to the other. It is much easier to pick up a drop cloth that got paint dripped on it, then trying to clean it out of the carpet later.

Wet the Roller

Dampen the roller with a wet cloth before applying the paint. A damp roller will absorb more paint than a dry one. Roll the damp roller into the paint that is in the paint pan and roll a second time to remove any excess paint.

Get a Pole

Get an extension pole that will attach to a roller. The pole will allow one to cover a larger area without the need of a ladder. Remember earlier about being a contortionist, it can be easy to jump around when using a pole extension. This is a recipe for disaster and a guarantee for a sore back.

Start Painting

Make sure to keep the strokes nice and slow, making sure to overlap paint lines. Paint the ceiling in 4×4 sections covering every part of the ceiling, while keeping the twisting and turning to a minimum. If taped off, make sure that the roller does not approach the tape. This will prevent the paint from splattering on the walls.


Take a step back and admire the work. Look for any areas that may require a second coat and apply if necessary. Carefully remove any tape from the ceilings and enjoy.


When it is all said and done, hopefully using the roller was an effective way to get that ceiling looking fresh. Now when planning a painting project, don’t be afraid to include the ceiling. As mentioned before a freshly painted ceiling could do as much for a room as painting the walls themselves.

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