Matt is a professional painter and freelance writer, sharing his knowledge, house-painting tips, and product reviews.
Painting With an 18-inch Roller Frame
The benefit of painting with an 18-inch roller frame is the time it saves when rolling out walls and ceilings. I used a 9-inch paint roller for many years, but I've since switched to an 18-inch roller for a lot of the interior painting I do, especially big ceilings.
The drawback to rolling drywall with a huge roller is the added weight when wet. These rollers get pretty heavy once they've become saturated with paint. You'll get a good upper arm workout rolling walls with one all day.
Cleaning the roller and the oversized paint bin does take a little longer too, but for the time these save, it's worth using one. I have back and neck problems, and the faster I can finish painting a huge ceiling, the better.
Two popular paint rollers in the 18-inch size is the one from Purdy and the other by Wooster. I haven't used the big roller from Wooster, but I often use a Purdy 18-inch roller. The roller frame adjusts from 12 to 18-inches. I'm not sure if the one from Wooster is adjustable.
Does the Purdy 18-inch Roller Stay Inside the Frame?
I have yet to find an 18-inch paint roller frame that functions flawlessly. Years ago, I owned one from a competing brand that would fall out of the frame a lot while rolling, making a huge mess. This roller hasn't fallen out of the frame, but sometimes the clips that hold the roller in place come loose, mostly when painting ceilings, which is annoying, but not a frequent occurrence.
There are two plastic clips and two screws on top of the frame that allow you to adjust the size of the roller you want to use down to 12-inches. The pins that hold the roller need to be locked securely into the end caps on the sides of the roller sleeve.
Rolling Walls and Ceilings
I use the Purdy White Dove, lint-free, 18-inch roller sleeve that matches this frame. This roller comes with end caps that the pins on the frame lock into to hold the roller in place. I believe you can use this frame with other roller sleeves too, not only Purdy.
Rolling ceilings with this roller is easier than walls, but either way, it's heavier than using a 9-inch sleeve. With the White Dove roller, the coverage is good, using a 3/4-inch nap. The slim design of the frame allows you to roll closer to wall and ceiling corners.
The Roller Frame Design
The placement of the screws and clips on the frame should be on top of the frame instead of directly in front of the paint roller itself. When rolling, the screws and clips get caked with paint and need to be wiped off. I started wrapping tape around these parts to protect them from paint spatter.
The design itself allows you to roll up to corners closer than my previous 18-inch paint roller. The arms of the frame hold the paint roller in place with two locking pins. The design is simple, but doesn't always work one hundred percent. The pins come loose sometimes, requiring adjustment. The frame works with any threaded extension pole for painting.
Is the Purdy 18-inch Roller Frame Worth It?
This product isn't perfect, but the main advantage here is the time you're saving. I use this roller whenever I'm faced with painting a large ceiling. It's heavy, but I can roll out a big ceiling in far less time than it would take me using a 9-inch paint roller.
I'd like to see a better locking mechanism to hold the roller more firmly in place. Having to stop and play with the clips in the middle of rolling is annoying, but this hasn't been a constant problem. I've been using the Purdy 18-inch roller now for about two years and the plastic casing on this tool has held up.
This roller is very useful for larger painting projects with big ceilings and long walls. Price wise, you're going to spend more money, because you need to buy the big paint bin, as well as the roller sleeve, but you have to weigh the cost with the convenience of finishing a project faster.
© 2018 Matt G.