Your Place: Readers tell how to tackle rust on a fridge

June 18, 2012 | By More

A couple of responses came in recently to a question about taking care of rust on a refrigerator at the Atlantic Shore, and I thought I’d share, since summer is almost upon us./pp From Nate Lentz, who, with 40 years’ experience in the field, says “whenever I see the word ‘rust,’ my eyes light up”:/pp “A salt environment is very corrosive to all metals, paints, and the like. Any rust must be removed completely; otherwise, it will continue to grow under any protective coatings.”/pp Lentz suggests that once the rust is removed completely, the refrigerator should be polished periodically. He uses Nu-Finish car polish./pp “I use the car polish on my front storm door that faces west,” he said. “The door was 2 years old in April and looks as if it were just installed.”/pp From Bill in Snyder County, Pa.: “I painted a refrigerator a number of years ago for a rental, using the instructions of a person who owned a used-furniture store./pp “I removed the door and all the hardware and gave it a very light sanding with very fine paper. After cleaning it, I thinned the oil-based almond paint I was using. I then used an inexpensive foam roller to paint the refrigerator. I put on a second coat, and maybe a third; no problem once it was prepped. The results were amazing. At a casual glance you couldn’t tell it’s not a factory paint job.”/pp He was very careful, keeping things dust-free, making sure the paint didn’t run, and the like./pp Q: I have an exterior front door that had never been painted. It’s steel over wood with a decorative glass window in the middle./pp My husband asked the paint guy what type of paint would be best (describing our unpainted door) and he sold us Benjamin Moore premium exterior MoorGlo Soft Gloss fortified acrylic house paint./pp I scrubbed the door clean (outside part), lightly sanded it with a green kitchen Scotch-Brite pad, and cleaned and dried the door./pp Once dry, on a cool dry day – we live in Northeast Florida – I painted the door. I knew it would have streaks from a brush – spraying would’ve been better – but I had no idea after letting it thoroughly dry, when pulling the tape off, the paint would come off with it just like rubberized wet paint./pp My friend said I should’ve used a primer first. Why wouldn’t the paint guy have recommended that knowing our metal door was unpainted?/pp What do we do now? Scrap the paint off and prime? Fill in the little places that peeled off and learn from your advice on the next two doors we have yet to paint?/pp A: Direct-to-metal gloss latex products may be used for ferrous metals, following manufacturer’s directions closely, with or without primer, says the Paint Quality Institute, but best results will be obtained using a metal primer./pp I’ve painted a steel door we had installed on our first house and roughed the surface a bit before priming for better adhesion. I also used two coats of primer, sanding lightly between them./pp I’m a firm believer in lightly sanding between coats of anything. It gets rid of little paint bumps on the surface and helps the next coat adhere better. It is a must when you polyurethane anything./pp I wouldn’t sand off what you have done, but I would sand to rough it up and even off the surface where the paint has been pulled off with the painter’s tape./pp I’d look online to find a tape that is less likely to pull off a smooth surface such as the one you are working on./pp Sand the surface, wash it, let it dry, and then make sure it is clean before applying two coats of primer, drying and lightly sanding in between, with a synthetic nap roller for water-based and a mohair for oil. Ten millimeter is fine./pp Then put on the topcoat, sticking with what the guy at the hardware store recommended, since Ben Moore is quality stuff (I use the no-VOC variety)./pp You’ll probably need two coats, sanding in between after letting the paint dry as long as possible, especially in the high humidity of Florida./pp Questions? E-mail Alan J. Heavens at aheavens@phillynews.com or write him at The Inquirer, Box 8263, Philadelphia PA 19101. Volume prohibits individual replies.

Tags: , , ,

Category: Furniture News

Comments are closed.