Spray Painting Steam Radiators Spray Painting Steam Radiators

What You'll Need
Spray painter
Degreasing solvent
Masking tape
Drop cloth or newspapers

As practical as steam radiators are within the home, decorating them can also be an easy way to enhance the décor of a room. Similarly, it is also possible to make them blend in with the existing color of a room. Understanding the necessary steps will help to ensure that the project of painting the radiators can be completed correctly.

Step 1 – Choose Paint

You must take the time to choose the correct paint for the steam radiators. This is due to the heat and water that is produced by the radiators, which can affect how the paint reacts. Not only do you have to consider how easy it is to apply, you also need to consider how long it will last. While latex paint will often be one of the cheapest options, it is unlikely to last due to the heat causing it to crack and peel. You will find that oil enamel paint will be best for this purpose as it is durable enough to last without reacting to the conditions.

Step 2 – Clean Surface

Where the steam radiators are already existing, you will find that they require cleaning beforehand. This will ensure that the paint properly adheres to the surface and can be smoothly applied. Dampen a cloth with a degreasing agent and use this to wipe the entire surface of the radiator. Follow this by wiping the radiator with a cloth that has been dampened with water before thoroughly drying it.    

Step 3 – Prepare Base

Depending on the existing surface of the steam radiators, you may find that a primer will need to be applied first. This will provide the best base for the paint and will ensure it will last. In the same way that the paint has to have the qualities necessary to make it suitable for purpose, so must the primer.

Spread newspaper or a drop cloth on the floor beneath the radiator. Using masking tape, stick newspaper to the wall behind the radiator, if necessary, to protect the surface. It is prudent to work in a dry atmosphere rather than a humid one to ensure an optimum application. The primer can be applied with a paintbrush or with the paint sprayer and must dry thoroughly before proceeding.

Step 4 – Apply Paint

A paint sprayer can often be rented from an equipment hire company and you must read the instructions before making use of it. Thoroughly stir or shake the paint before pouring it into the receptacle of the spray painter. Test the strength of the spray on a piece of newspaper before applying the paint to the radiator. Work methodically when spraying the paint on the steam radiators. For example, working in straight lines will ensure that you apply the color evenly and can avoid unnecessary overlap. By starting at the bottom and working your way up, you can avoid drip marks. If necessary, apply a second layer once the first is dry.

Got a New Project You're Proud of?

Post it on Your Projects!