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Is painting radiators a good idea?

(20 Posts)
DorcasthePuffin Sun 12-Mar-17 23:11:50

And if so, what paint would you recommend? I'd rather not use a spray - I just know I'll get it everywhere, feel happier with a brush in hand.

PigletJohn Sun 12-Mar-17 23:22:36


rub it down first with wire wool (not sandpaper)

Use Kurust on any rust patches, after wire brushing them.

Oil paint (and primer on bare patches) on steel as water paint will start rust.

It will all be much easier if you take it off the wall first.

kel1493 Sun 12-Mar-17 23:26:55

We just use radiator paint.

ijustwannadance Sun 12-Mar-17 23:37:46

I used the same B&Q own satinwood that I used for doors and skirting. Still looked great after 6 years.

It will say on tin if suitable.

DorcasthePuffin Sun 12-Mar-17 23:40:53

Thank you everybody! Pigletjohn - sorry, are you recommending satinwood? Does that come in oil-based or water-based variants, or will any satinwood do?

There's no way I'm taking it off the wall first - the thought gives me palpitations! I'll be nervously dabbing at the bits I can access with a teeny paintbrush...

DorcasthePuffin Sun 12-Mar-17 23:42:13

Oh and Pigletjohn - while I've got you - is it a step too far to paint bathroom tiles surrounding the bath/shower? I've painted kitchen tiles successfully, but is painting the tiles actually in the shower just asking for trouble?

PigletJohn Sun 12-Mar-17 23:52:09

I think paint on the tiles will go shabby and quickly peel. A shower will be particularly bad due to water and steam.

International Paints probably make something for it.

Dulux do a solvent Satinwood.

I still believe that oil-based paint is more durable than water-based.

Villagernumber9 Mon 13-Mar-17 00:26:08

Aaaagh, nooooooooo. Extra layers of paint will insulate the radiator and I don't care what anyone else says, I think it looks naff. Sorry.

DorcasthePuffin Mon 13-Mar-17 23:16:37

Oh no, peeling tiles and insulated radiators - this thread has taken a bad turn!

PigletJohn Mon 13-Mar-17 23:55:50

remembering that, for example, loft insulation is 250mm of mineral wool, I don't think that 0.01mm of paint will have a noticeable insulative effect.

If it did, redecorating would cut your gas bill.

MiaowTheCat Tue 14-Mar-17 07:52:54

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

specialsubject Tue 14-Mar-17 10:06:13

I've never seen a painted radiator that looks anything other than amateurish.

Replace, they aren't pricey. Wait until summer, drain system, do it then.

wowfudge Tue 14-Mar-17 10:15:36

That's a tad extreme, not to mention costly! You can paint rads with emulsion and they'll be fine. If someone has already painted them, it won't do any harm to repaint in a colour of your own choice.

PigletJohn Tue 14-Mar-17 15:20:27


then you need more practice.

take them off and lie them flat in the garden.

Do the backs first.

SailAwaySailAwaySailAway Tue 14-Mar-17 15:23:10

Satinwood is fine. Don't overload your brush though. I paint mine the same colour as the wall.

NomDePlumeReloaded Tue 14-Mar-17 15:25:33

I wouldn't do it myself. Tried a couple of times and ended up with a streaky, lumpy mess. I now use a good decorator and the finish is impeccable.

I realise that isn't always possible as an option though.

Electrolux2 Tue 14-Mar-17 15:26:19

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

DorcasthePuffin Tue 14-Mar-17 19:27:22

I was going to do mine the same colour as the wall too, SailAway. I just want them to look a bit smarter: at the moment they are yellowed white gloss which has chipped very badly. They are not beautiful radiators - they're those cheap-looking ones with the vent at the top. I just want to make them a bit more invisible - and I can't afford to replace them yet.

PigletJohn - is it really really necessary to take them off the wall? Surely I don't need to paint the back?

I looked on the Farrow & Ball website and it said to use some specialist primer first, then two coats of F&B primer, then 2 coats of satinwood. That seemed a bit extreme: is five coats really necessary?

PigletJohn Tue 14-Mar-17 19:48:49

for a good job...

PigletJohn Tue 14-Mar-17 19:51:15

I mean, for a good job, take them off the wall.

I don't approve of multiple layers of paint. The thicker the paint coating, the more likely it is to crack or craze. They are primed white in the factory. You need to re-prime any bare bits, or any rust after you have cleaned off the rust and Kurusted it.

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