Painting Brass

Painting a brass lamp, fireplace surround, or other item can give it new life and a more updated appearance. This is a guide about painting brass.


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January 28, 2010 Flag

I would like to know if brass can be painted.

By bigmikepaint from Syracuse, NY

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January 28, 20100 found this helpful

I suppose you could use metal paint - after all, they paint cars, don't they?

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January 30, 20100 found this helpful

Yes, you can paint brass with spray paint. If you have concerns re: the paint not sticking, you can spray it with a primer first, and then add your color.

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February 1, 20100 found this helpful

Yes, I did a light fixture and the brass was pitted and ugly. I aprayed it with and antique brass and I think it looks great!

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February 1, 20100 found this helpful

I painted our brass chandelier. I used an oil based paint that was called "hammered metal." I got it at Lowes. I didn't even take down the fixture! It's looks great. It's a very thick oil-based paint and really adheres well. I used a brush but it was also available in a spray.

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November 25, 2013 Flag

Is there anyway to paint brass shower door frames, to last permanently?

By Bethany

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November 27, 20130 found this helpful

I don't know about painting it, but if you do, you could put a clear coat on afterwards to protect the paint!

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September 14, 2011 Flag

How do I paint a brass type floor lamp?

By Sue

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September 15, 20110 found this helpful

My husband did this to a couple of lamps some months ago and they look like new. First, sand the brass areas, then spray them with the "sticks to anything" type spray paint. Let them dry and you're through! We went from shiny, scratched-up brass to flat black in the spray of a can!

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March 21, 2010 Flag

How do I paint my brass fireplace?

By Ciber from WA

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March 21, 20100 found this helpful

Before painting, clean the area with rubbing alcohol!

You'll need to use a High Temperature paint. You can either buy a paint made to paint car motors or you can buy a special paint that's made for wood stoves. I would use spray-paint. The high-temp spray paint is not hard to find. It's sold with all the other spray paints at Home Depot & other stores. You may find a larger selection of high-temp pain at auto-parts stores. If you buy "regular" paint that is not made to get hot, it may easily bubble-up, crack or chip-off from the heat of the fire. To paint over something shiny & metallic, you'll want an OIL-based paint or Enamel, NOT "water-based"!

* Prep Work:

To paint brass, you'll need to first give it some "tooth" by roughing it up a little with sand paper or steel wool, then prime (high temp) then paint (high temp)... Sometimes you can find a paint/primer mix. Some high-temp paints don't "set-up" until they are heated. Read the directions on the can thoroughly. After sanding, remove any dust then wipe-down the whole area with rubbing alcohol & a paper towel! Sanding may sound like a hassle, but it has to be done! (unless you are using Hammerite paint)

* Other High Temperature:

Don't accidentally buy "stove black" the cream wood stove paints (that look like canned shoe-polish). They are made for painting cast-iron or steel wood stoves. These creamy paints usually come in matte-black, but rarely you can get them in other colors (like brown, hunter & navy). I have used this kind of wood stove paint many times & they are simply wonderful. They can make an old rusty wood stove look like brand-new again! But they can't be used over metal or glossy areas (like yours). Buy high-temp spray pain instead.

* Masking

If you have glass doors, take wet newspaper or wet computer paper & stick this wet paper to the glass. Be sure to use blue masking tape to cover anyplace you don't want painted! If you need to mask-off bricks, sometimes tin-foil works best, because you can easily make the foil adhere to the bricks by running a cloth or your hand along the foil until it conforms to the shape of the bricks & temporarily sticks to them. Also, put newspaper under the painting area.

* Hammerite:

If you want a hammered metallic finish, you can buy Hammerite spray paint. Hammerite looks amazing & comes in many metallic colors & there is no need for primer. Be sure to open your windows because it is a stinky oil-based paint. I don't know if Hammerite is a high-temp paint, so if the fireplace is for more than "show" & you actually use it, check the back of the can or ask the Home Depot paint person. I you use Hammerite, you won't first need to sand the area. Hammerite comes in many colors including an antique brass & a pewter look. It's a wonderful, durable brand! Hammerite usually has a "hammered" texture, but it also comes in a smooth satin or gloss finish. Another nice thing about Hammerite is you can paint right over rust!

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