Removing enamel paint from metal surfaces takes sufficient time and usages of several tools. So, many people prefer repainting over old paint without the removal.
But the layers of paints give a gummy or unattractive look. Again, sometimes the old color becomes visible when the topcoat gets stains.
On the other hand, removing old paint can give you a permanent, error-free, smooth surface. It provides a satisfying result even if you want to paint again.
Note: Water-based enamel paints are easy to remove from metal relative to oil-based or polyurethane paints.
In this complete guide, you will learn how to remove enamel paint from metal. However, you will need several tools to complete the project.
How To Remove Paint From Metal – Tools & Materials:
|Safety glasses||Long-sleeved shirt and pants||Respirator or dust mask|
|Dropcloth or old newspapers||Paint stripper||Glass or metal can|
|A disposable paintbrush||Paint scraper||A scrub pad or nylon brush|
Steps to Remove Enamel Paint from Metal
Steps to Remove Paint from Metal
First Step – Working Area Preparation
Firstly, you need to make the place ready for work. You may have already thought it is not so important. But, trust us, this is equally important like other steps we are going to share. If you wish to remove enamel paint from metal hardware, switch off and unplug it from the electric source.
We assume that you have managed every tool we have mentioned earlier. Now, lay down the drop cloth to cover the ground well. If you do not have drop cloths, you can use old, recycled newspaper to conceal the area. This covering is required for protecting the floor or surface you are about to work from the chemical stripper.
Additionally, we suggest you put on a respirator or dust mask, safety glasses, and rubber gloves. Also, wearing long-sleeved shirts and loose pants can help you stay safe during the project. For better protection, keep the windows open to avoid any fuming accidents from the chemicals.
Second Step – Use Paint Stripper
Paint strippers are suitable for any outdoor, heavy-duty projects. They are available in different forms.
Take the paint stripper and pour a small portion in a metal or glass can. Now, use the disposable paintbrush to apply a thick layer to the metal surface.
The stripper will react with the paint and create tiny paint bubbles appearing from the metal side. The reaction time may take a minimum of 30 minutes.
Third Step – Use the Paint Scraper & Mineral Spirits
Once you see the paint bubbles, it is time to chip off the paint. You can use the paint scraper to slowly remove the paint. It works faster when you are removing paint from a flat surface.
A paint scraper is basically a handheld tool looking like a putty knife. It can chip off the paint with the elbow grease. Also, you can choose a plastic blade (scraper) over the metal blade to avoid scratches or stains on the metal exterior. Likewise, you can easily chip off the corners with a scrubbing pad or nylon brush.
Some experts suggest using rags to remove the scraper and the unwanted old paint. You can follow the second step repeatedly if it is necessary. By repetition, the surface becomes enamel paint-free in quick time.
After scraping the old paint, apply the mineral spirits with a damp rag. It helps to remove any residues left on the metal surface.
Final Step – Clean the Surface
After you removed all the leftovers, you can clean the metal to complete the project. Rinse the metal off with water and eliminate any remaining traces of the stripper. Then, wipe the area with a dry and fresh rag. Thus, the removal of enamel paint is done in such easy ways!
If the working object is hardware, then re-plug to turn it on. Again, place the hardware or metal stuff in the original place. Lastly, apply a weatherproof sealer on the metal surface for longtime protection.
Alternative Ways to Remove Enamel Paint from Metal
Heat guns are used to melt the dull enamel paint from metal. You can buy or collect heat guns from the nearby stores.
Take the gun and start with the lowest settings. Now, hold the gun, maintaining a few inches’ distances from the metal surface. Move the gun back and forth slightly while taking enough time. Doing the job in a hurry can warp the metal.
Avoid overheating of the target area. Then, use a paint scraper when you see the paint bubble from the surface. Scrape all the paint slowly and let the place cool enough.
Avoid touching the metal piece with bare hands. Instead, you can use heatproof rubber gloves. Then, clean the area with damp rags and apply mineral spirits to finish the job. Lastly, rinse the surface with water and let it dry.
Angle Grinder with Strip Disk
An angle grinder with a strip disk can help to remove enamel paint from metal object. It is a quicker method for the people who cannot manage time for this work. However, it is a bit louder device which you may not like. Again, it can create massive dust while you use it.
You can find a strip disk with different abrasion quality. Attach a strip disk for the metal surface to the device you have brought. Use the device while turning it on. Once the paint is removed, clean the area with a rag or damp cloth.
An angle grinder with a strip disk can be a suitable method to remove enamel paint from steel, beams, pipes, fences, etc., areas.
You can use vinegar or baking soda for enamel paint removal. Vinegar can also be a substitute to baking soda. In this case, you will need a stove and a disposable pot or pan. Usually, this method is helpful for small metal objects.
Now, make a water solution and baking soda (or vinegar) in a pan and boil them on the stovetop. You can take one quart of water and ¼ cup of vinegar to make the solution. Boil the solution for at least 15 minutes. Now, wear heatproof gloves and immerse the metal object into the boiled solution.
The solution will react with metal, and the bond between paint and metal weakens. Slowly, the paint will go off the surface. You can use tongs to bring out the metal object from the liquid after removing the paint. Lastly, use a scraper to remove the leftovers. Rinse and clean the object and let it dry for further uses.