Painted Radiator Covers to Brighten Up Your Home

Radiator cover

Although radiators serve a highly-practical purpose, some old fashioned radiators can be unsightly and ruin the aesthetic you’re trying to create in your home. This is particularly the case if they’re boxed in with radiator covers that look drab and unappealing.

Nowadays, designer radiators are sleek, stylish and highly fashionable. However, if you can’t afford the cost of replacing the radiators in your home with new ones, then there are certain steps you can take to bring new life to your old radiator covers. One great way of doing this is to remove any blemishes and then paint your radiator covers in a new colour.

In this post, we’ll show you exactly how to paint a radiator cover. We’ll also explain the best colours for you to paint your radiator cover and which paint is best for the job.

Deciding what colour to paint your radiator cover

When it comes to painting a radiator cover, you have an endless list of options. You can choose to either paint your cover the same colour as your wall so it blends into the background (and creates the illusion of extra space), or you can choose an accent hue that transforms your radiator into a real statement piece of furniture.

You’d be amazed at how a couple of coats of paint can completely transform your radiator cover. After all, the constant heating and cooling can cause the paint that’s currently on your radiator cover to expand and contract slightly, leading to chips and cracks. Plus, the constant heat can also cause your current paintwork to bubble if it isn’t applied correctly. On top of this, the exposure to heat and light can cause the colour to change and fade over time. All of this is before we even consider the damage that can be caused by people and hoovers bumping into the radiator cover.

However, by repainting your radiator cover every couple of years or so, you can breathe new life into it. This is particularly the case if you feel your radiator cover looks out of place in your current space.

If you’re looking to create a modern and industrial look, then we recommend painting your radiator cover in a vintage grey colour. To complete the look, you can even paint your fittings in a bronze tone. Alternatively, if you’re trying to create the vibe of a country cottage, then painted radiator covers in natural tones work really well. You can either opt for a stone or beige colour, or even a light green. Finally, if you’re trying to bring your radiator into the 21st century, opt for something bold and beautiful that creates a contrast. Think bold blues and bright yellows. This splash of colour will really draw the eye.

What is the best paint to use on radiator covers?

The exact paint you need will depend on the surface you’re painting. For example, if you’re painting a metal radiator cover, then we recommend using an enamel paint in combination with a primer. This is because enamel paint is hardwearing and will be much tougher than a standard chalk paint or a gloss paint.

However, if you’re painting a wooden radiator cover, then you may not need a paint that’s so hardwearing. Instead, we’d advise using a primer followed by a couple of coats of an oil-based paint.

How to paint a radiator cover

Step 1: Remove the cover

If you have the ability to remove your radiator cover, then you should move it before you start painting. This will allow you to access all of those hard-to-reach places and will mean that you cannot accidentally get any paint on the radiator itself.

However, if you have any reason to believe that lead is present, you should contact an expert or test the surface first. If lead is in the area, you should ask an expert to carry out the work.

Step 2: Clean the radiator cover

Before you start painting the radiator cover, you should remove any debris and smooth out any chipped pieces of paintwork.

Regardless of whether you have a wooden radiator cover or a metal radiator cover, you should give your cover a light sand before you start working on it. A 120-grit piece of sandpaper should do the trick. Once you’ve sanded the cover, wipe it down with a damp cloth to remove dirt and debris.

Step 3: Prime the radiator cover

Once the cover is dry, apply the primer using a soft-bristled brush. You can apply this in the exact same way that you’d apply emulsion paint on a wall or ceiling. Just pay extra attention to areas where dark metal is exposed underneath.

Step 4: Paint your radiator using your chosen paint

Finally, you’re ready to paint the radiator cover with your chosen paint. At this stage, you should apply the paint slightly thicker than you would if you were applying emulsion or gloss, as this will provide better coverage.

At this point, you should find that the thick paint covers any scratches or chips. However, if you’re unhappy with the finish, you can apply a second coat.

That’s exactly how to paint a radiator cover in four simple steps. Of course, if you’re unsure about anything mentioned above or you’re unclear on how to paint the radiator covers in your home, you should speak to an expert before starting. Alternatively, if you don’t think that painting your radiator cover will provide you with your desired look, take a look at the great range of designer radiators we stock today.


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