paint roller

Painting Cabinet Hardware

Written by David | October 14, 2022

If you are like us, we needed to update our kitchen after moving in to our new home. After issues with the roof, electrical, plumbing and floors, the kitchen was going to be killed or scaled back. We chose to scale back, by painting the cabinets. The hardware and hinges however were BAD!! Due to their age we could not replace them, so instead we decided we would be painting cabinet hardware.

You can see the house as we saw it in our video series Huntley home makeover, shows what everything looks like before we started. Day 1- Day 10 is a decent progression of the cabinets and cabinet hinges being painted.

Can I paint my cabinet hardware?

Before setting out to repaint your hardware, here are a few things to consider:

  • Do the cabinet hinges still work?
  • Can you remove the hinges?
  • Do you want to see them anymore?
  • Do you have a place to paint them?

If the hinges don’t work then don’t paint them; paint will not fix them. It sounds like that would make sense but we have had people ask us this question.

You have to be able to remove them as well, because they will need to be cleaned, scuff sanded, and ideally sprayed with bonding primer and top coat.

painting cabinet hardware
before and after painted cabinet handles
painting cabinet hinges - paint over cabinet hinges
before and after painting cabinet hinges

So if the hinges can be cleaned, removed, and they work, then yes, you can paint your cabinet hardware.

Clean your cabinet hardware before anything else!

As we set out to just get by with what we have but improve the look of our kitchen, painitng cabinet hardware was the best option for us.
Once the hardware was removed, we had to do several things: wash our hands because they were so gross and disgusting with grease, grime… YUKKKK!!

The screws did overall come out- but they were in very bad shape. They were made of old brass which meant we had to get new screws to put everything back.

To clean the hardware we used a finger/nail cleaning scrub brush and heavy concentration of Dawn dish soap. Daphne set out on this venture and it took her several buckets and about 4 hours to scrub away the grime so we had a good clean surface to paint.

How to paint your hardware

Once you have all the items you want to paint, and the items are completely dry, you can set out to start painting cabinet hardware!

We started with Rustoleum Rust Reformer. This is a primer that seals rust, so it won’t keep rusting and it won’t bleed or come right though the paint again. This primer takes a good 12-24 hours to dry. It comes in several colors, so pick one of them- black, white or orange/red, that is close to the color you are painting.

When the primer is dry, then you can start painting!! We used a gloss white for the hinges and a hammered metal for the handles. (the handles already have that style of metal so it makes sense)

The white gloss, if you read the instructions, says to keep about 1-12 inches away from the surface and use light coats, we had to use 3 coats. They have to dry completely before new coats which if you use the fast dry still takes 4-6 hours. So this nothing you will do in 1 hour.

We hope this helps you with your home remodeling and or kitchen updates. It is not for everyone, we know, but we are just hoping it can help those in that need it. If you have any questions about painting cabinet hardware and hinges or general painting kitchen cabinet questions, please let me know!

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