How Long Does It Take To Paint A Room? (+ 7 Tips For Speed)

Painting a room is a great way to take care of your home and update it without spending a lot of money. Nothing is better than a fresh coat of paint on the walls, but many homeowners wonder how long the work will take.

Before you get started with painting a room, it is a good idea to figure out how long it takes to paint a room. Let’s explore that more below and see how much time you will spend on this task.  

How Long Does It Normally Take To Paint a Room? 

Painting your room will take some time. The tools you use, the size of the room, and even the type of paint you use will help determine how long it takes to paint the whole room. If you do not paint often, this can increase the time it takes to get the work done.  

In general, it will take about eighteen seconds for each square foot to set up all of the painting supplies, forty seconds to paint, and seven seconds for the cleanup. You can use this to figure out how long it will take to do any size of room that you would like to paint.  

Traditional paint brushes and rollers will take longer than using professional sprayers. The setup on these will take the longest because you will need to cover all of the items in the home and make sure nothing gets ruined. Once you turn on the machine, it can quickly get the room painted and ready to go in no time.  

A good example of how long it takes to paint a room is below: 


Minutes Per Square Foot 

Minutes for 364 sq. ft. Room 

Prep Work 



Cutting In 



Rolling Walls 






Total Time 


291.84 (almost five hours) 

A professional painter will be able to get the room done faster. This is because they have the professional tools and have designed a method to get it done quickly and efficiently.

They also know how to get all the prep work and cleanup done faster than a DIY job, where the homeowner may paint one room every few years.  

2 persons wearing blue denim jeans

Factors That Affect The Painting Time For A Room 

There are different factors that will help determine how long it takes to paint a room in your home. The more you can cut down on each of these, the easier it is to make the room look nice, and the less time it takes. Some of the factors that influence how long it takes to paint a room include: 


Before you start painting, you will need to prepare the room. This includes moving items out of the room, covering up anything that has to stay, and cleaning the walls. Some choose to put painter's tape down to keep the edges clean. 

This can add to the overall time that it takes to keep the room looking nice. The more rooms you paint, the faster the preparation time will be, helping to speed up your painting time.  

Size of the Room 

The size of the room will determine how long it takes to paint. Smaller rooms have less area to paint over and can be done faster. If you have a really large room, you can expect it will take longer to finish all of the painting and make it look nice.

Smaller spaces are going to be easier to paint and will not take as long. You can factor in the average length of time it takes to paint per square foot to help set an estimated time to get the work done.  

Previous Paint Color 

The previous color of the walls will make a difference on how long it takes to paint. The darker the color, the longer it will take. With dark paint, you may need to use a good primer and wait for it to dry before you can start with the new color. 

If the walls were a lighter color to start, you might only need to put one coat of paint on the walls to be done. Darker colors will need two coats, and this takes longer.  

Weather Conditions 

The weather can slow down the drying process when you are done painting. Humid weather will slow down things and can mean you will need to wait longer between coats of paint. If the air is dryer, like in winter, you will be able to get the paint to dry a little faster because there is not as much moisture in the air. 

If you are experiencing lots of humidity in your area, you may want to wait a few days before you start to paint a room. This can speed up the painting process.  

Tools and Equipment 

The tools you use will make a difference in how long it takes to paint. If you use traditional rollers and brushes, the work will get done more slowly than with a paint sprayer. Most homeowners choose to use a roller and paintbrush because it costs less money, but they will take a little longer to get the work done.  

Paint Color and Type 

The type of paint and the color of the paint will make a difference. Some paints are thicker than others, which helps you to cover the area faster than others. Darker and bold colors tend to stick on the wall a little better, helping you to have a great-looking wall in a fraction of the time.  

How Long Does It Take To Paint A Room

Tips To Speed Up The Process 

Painting your home can seem like a huge task. It can take time and will waste up a whole day if you are not prepared and ready.

There are some simple steps you can take to help speed up the process and make sure that your walls look amazing when you are done. Some of the best tips for how to paint a room quickly include: 

  • Gather The Supplies
    Figure out what you will need to get the room painted and find them all before you start. If you have to stop and find more items throughout the painting job, it will slow down your progress. Bring all the items into the room with you. Have some extra paintbrushes on hand and rollers in case you need more than you thought. 
  • Prepare The Room
    Efficient painting needs some efficient prepping. You will need to get the room ready so that you can get going. Clear out all the items, put down the painter's tape, and get to work to make the area look nice. This will speed up the process. 
  • Prep The Walls
    Clean off the walls to remove some of the lint, dust, and debris that can gather there over time. You can even add a clean rag to a swivel duster and clean off the hard-to-reach places.
  • Skip The Tape
    Taping the trim may seem like a good idea, but it can take a long time to do. If you are careful around the edges and use a good paintbrush, it is not necessary. If you plan to repaint the trim, too, there is no need to add the painter's tape to the area at all. 
  • Skip The Primer
    This will be a good shortcut because more rooms do not need it. The only time primer is necessary is when you are taking a darker color and turning it light. If you have a really dark and bold color on the wall, you may need to use the primer, but for most paints, you will be fine just painting over it. 
  • Start At The Ceiling
    Go from top to bottom. The ceiling is never fun, but if you get it out of the way from the beginning, you will be able to avoid some of the hassle of doing it later and reaching over wet paint. 
  • Roll, Then Cut In
    This helps you to make big progress quickly, which can trick you into thinking you have gotten a lot of work done in a short amount of time. This is the opposite of most advice, but it does work. 
paint roller

Common Room Painting Questions

Do I need to wash walls before painting? 

Take a look at your walls before you start painting. If they are in good shape, you will not need to wash them off. You will need to clean the walls off if they are grimy and dusty. 

All imperfections will get worse if you try to hide them with paint. Take a few minutes to clean off the paint to make it look nice.  

Can you paint a room in one day? 

It is possible to paint a room in one day. When the room is small, it does not take too long to put on one coat. Some types of paint will work with just one coat, and you can get it all done.

If the paint needs more than one coat, expect 24 hours between finishing the first coat and applying the second to get the work done.  

How long does it take for paint to dry in a room? 

Most oil-based paints will take up to eight hours to feel dry to the touch. If you plan to put an additional coat on, you will need to allow the first coat 24 hours to dry before starting. 

When one coat is enough, wait at least eight hours before adding furniture back into the room to make sure the paint is dry. High humidity can make the drying process take longer.  

Is it safe to sleep in a room with drying paint? 

It is generally safe for you to sleep in a room that is freshly painted. Just make sure that the paint has time to dry. Some types of paint will need 72 hours to ventilate in the room before you go back in.

The higher the VOC level, the longer it needs to ventilate. For most home paints, you can wait for the paint to dry and then move everything back in safely.  


Painting a room is one of the best ways to take care of your home and spruce it up a little bit. But you will need to dedicate some time to get the room done.

A standard room can take up a good part of the day, and then you need to let it have time to dry before doing the second coat. Then, when you are prepared and ready to go, you can speed up the process and make the room look amazing.