How do pros paint textured walls, specifically knockdown texture?

I'm using a Sherwin Williams emerald paint, an acrylic latex paint and a roller with a 3/4" nap. However, I'm still left with large areas where the paint can't reach all the little troughs and valleys in the texture. I'm having to go back over almost the entire wall with a paint brush and use a stipple technique to get good coverage.

Can I thin the paint out and do two coats? Should I invest in a sprayer? Thanks so much for any tips. enter image description here

  • 3/4" nap is way too much for typical wall texture. A good quality 3/8 is what I normally use. Is your texture crazy rough? What's a "stipple technique"?
    – isherwood
    Aug 1, 2018 at 20:40
  • 1
    Stipple is where you poke the brush into the voids, it may be the op is running the roller two dry, at 3/4" nap that would my guesses.
    – Ed Beal
    Aug 1, 2018 at 21:03
  • I will try to keep the roller loaded with more paint and see how that goes. Aug 2, 2018 at 4:04
  • Just added a photo. That's very close up and you can clearly see where the paint isn't quite reaching. More paint on the roller helps but I'm still left having to touch up each wall for about an hour using a flashlight to find these areas Aug 6, 2018 at 18:31

2 Answers 2


You just need a little more pressure. It looks like you have enough paint on the roller, and just need to press the nap into the texture more assertively. The texture isn't extraordinarily deep or sharp, and those dots appear to be a matter of nap reach, and not of smearing.

If the latter were the case, you could use a wet re-roll strategy--after you finish a wall, go back and re-roll it right away. I've done this with great success when painting bold colors over light colors, for example.

  • Do you have a nap that you'd recommend? Aug 6, 2018 at 19:46
  • I already did. Way up there. :)
    – isherwood
    Aug 6, 2018 at 19:47

When I’m painting textured walls I like to use a good paint brush and have found that gets the job done faster and really uses a whole lot less paint. I actually just finished painting my bedroom a color called “cracked pepper”, which is a toned down black and I absolutely love it! My bedroom walls were a turquoise shade and I have deep texture lines on my walls and ceilings, and I only used a 1/2 gallon of paint for my entire room with a good Purdy brush and it turned out great.


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