How to Paint Plasterboard Walls

Updated February 21, 2017

Painting plasterboard can add visual interest to any room of your home. Sometimes called drywall, plasterboard is used in most new construction for finishing walls. When new, plasterboard is most often plain white in colour. The installation process, which includes nails and taping, requires additional help to appear finished. Painting plasterboard can be a do-it-yourself project if you have the time and patience necessary for the work involved. Be prepared to be out of the room for at least 48 hours.

Clean the walls, using a dry white cloth. Remove as much dust, dirt and other substances as possible.

Sand the wall lightly to rough up the area. Roughing the area will allow the sealant to stick.

Roll sealant onto the plasterboard. Sealant is required prior to painting to prevent the paint from soaking in completely. Allow the sealant to dry for 24 hours prior to painting.

Paint the wall using a roller. Move in a smooth, overlapping motion. Plasterboard surfaces tend to appear uneven. The smoother the paint applied, the less uneven the plasterboard's appearance.

Apply a second coat if needed. Allow the first coat to dry before you decide whether it needs an additional coat.


Consult with a professional for the best sealant to use.


Do not thin the paint. Plasterboard, even with sealant, will absorb paint. The thicker or more concentrated the paint, the better the application.

Things You'll Need

  • Clean rags
  • Sandpaper
  • Plasterboard sealant
  • Paint rollers
  • Paint pans
  • Flat paint
Cite this Article A tool to create a citation to reference this article Cite this Article

About the Author

Sidney Johns began her writing career in 1993 after moving to Florida. The former teacher and surgical technician worked in the home improvement industry prior to earning a Bachelor of Science in education from Indiana University. While on hiatus in 2004, Johns studied holistic healing and organic growth and gardening.