Stainless steel is an amazing candidate for your property, whether as steel, as window safety bars, or for kitchen use. Although stainless steel is preferable due to its rust resistance, it might not add that pop of color to your home’s interior. Fortunately, you can turn it into the color of your choice. Can you paint stainless steel, though? Continue reading to learn the ideal paint options for stainless steel and how to do it.
What Paints Can You Use for Coloring Stainless Steel?
Painting stainless steel is not as simple as taking a brush and splashing some color. Standard paints and coatings do not adhere to the stainless steel surface for long. Therefore, you need to apply a primer first. This way, the stainless steel surface will look smooth, and the paint will adhere to it better. Some recommended paints for stainless steel include:
- Oil-Based Paint
Oil-based paints are the primary option to go for when painting stainless steel. They do not stain or crumble easily; plus, you won’t find trouble in cleaning surfaces coated with oil-based paints. No paints are available for painting stainless steel, but you can find oil-based ones that can be applied to ferrous and non-ferrous metals. Moreover, you can go with a matte, flat, gloss, or any finish of your choice.
However, they might not dry as quickly as water-based paints, nor can you paint large stainless steel surfaces with them. You can, but oil-based paints are not ideal for doing so.
- Water-Based Paint
Water-based paints dry quickly and are convenient to use. Moreover, they do not have a foul odor like oil-based paints. In addition, once the paint is cured, you can clean the stainless steel surface using water. But applying a primary is a must if using water-based paints. Not only this, they are not as tough as their oil-based counterparts. Hence, water-based paints might not be the best if your stainless steel surface is used a lot.
Overall, they are an affordable option that dries quickly, cleans easily, and does not smell bad.
- Epoxy Paint
Epoxy paints are a durable option that is hard to wear and resists chemicals like solvents. Moreover, they can withstand impact and high temperatures. Which means it does not chip or crack easily.
Using epoxy paints is not just splashing colors over the stainless steel surface. First, you need to mix the resin paint with a hardener, which acts as a catalyst in the polymerization process. The time it will take to dry is determined by the amount of hardener you added. The process might be a bit tricky; thus, it is not used in DIYs much. Automotive and heavy industries use epoxy paints to coat steel tanks or pressure vessels.
Can You Spray Paint Stainless Steel?
Yes, spray paint is an excellent choice for painting small stainless steel items. Applying a primer first works best, but you can skip this step if you have a paint and primer combination spray paint. We have given a few guidelines, but you should always consult the manufacturer before painting stainless steel.
- Work in a ventilated space with protective gear like goggles, gloves, and respirators.
- Spread a drop cloth or newspaper before you start painting
- If you can dissemble your item, do it to achieve an even coating.
- Use sandpaper, like 320-grit, for sanding the stainless steel surface. This will increase the adhesion.
- Use a degreaser to wash the surface.
- Wipe the item with acetone or thinner before painting. (optional)
- Dry the stainless steel surface before applying the primer. Choose a grey primer for dark-colored paints and a light-colored or white primer for lighter shades.
- Hold the can 13 inches from the surface and keep your hand moving as you spray. Let the primer dry.
- Hold the spray paint at least 12 inches from the surface, keeping your hand in motion as you spray. Apply thin coats; wait for each to dry before spraying another.
- Wait for the paint to cure, and then reassemble the project. Read the manufacturer’s instructions on when the paint will dry.
What to do?
You can paint stainless steel surfaces to add a pop of color. There are many options to pick from; go for the one that suits your needs. At Fort Bend & Steel Supply, you can find stainless steel options. Dial (281) 499-5800 to contact us now.