Tips On Painting A Refrigerator

tips on painting a refrigerator

Updating your kitchen with a fresh coat of paint on the refrigerator is an economical way to make it look brand new. In this blog post, we will guide you through the entire process of transforming your fridge from drab to fab.

We’ll start by discussing how to select the right paint for your refrigerator, including options like Behr Premium Ultra Pure Interior Cabinet and Trim paint or Sherwin Williams Extreme Bond primer, and Emerald Latex paint. You’ll also learn about alternative choices such as Country Chic Chalk Paint and Zinsser Ultimate Stain Blocker.

Next, we’ll cover essential steps in preparing your fridge for painting, from removing logos and handles to cleaning with baking soda mixture or sugar soap solution. We’ll also explain why lightly sanding the surface is crucial for achieving professional results.

In addition to that, our guide will delve into applying primer for long-lasting results using magnetic primer while emphasizing adequate drying time. Furthermore, we will explore various painting techniques for a smooth finish – whether you choose foam roller or one-inch angle brush method or opt for spray painting option – along with stressing on multiple coats and proper drying time.

To add some character to your refrigerator design, we have included ideas like wildcat print around the ice dispenser or fish motif lino print on fridge sections. Finally, our post will discuss protective finishing touches that ensure the durability and longevity of your newly painted appliance.

Painting a Refrigerator

If you’re looking to give your kitchen a fresh new look, painting your refrigerator can be a great DIY project. However, it’s important to choose the right paint and follow the proper painting process to ensure a long-lasting finish. In this article, we’ll discuss some of the best paint options and tips for painting your refrigerator.

Selecting the Right Paint for Your Refrigerator

Choosing a paint that adheres well to glossy surfaces is crucial when painting your refrigerator. When it comes to painting your refrigerator, there are a variety of paints available with their own advantages and drawbacks. In this section, we will discuss some of the best choices for refrigerator paint.

Behr Premium Ultra Pure Interior Cabinet and Trim Paint

Behr Premium Ultra Pure Interior Cabinet and Trim paint in satin finish is an excellent choice for refrigerators due to its durability and adhesion properties. This water-based acrylic-alkyd formula offers a smooth finish while providing superior resistance against stains, scuffs, and fingerprints.

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Sherwin Williams Extreme Bond Primer and Emerald Latex Paint

Another suitable option is using Sherwin Williams Extreme Bond primer, followed by Emerald Latex paint. The primer ensures proper adhesion on hard-to-stick surfaces like refrigerators while offering outstanding topcoat compatibility. The Emerald Latex paint provides exceptional coverage, washability, and durability.

Alternative Options: Country Chic Chalk Paint, Zinsser Ultimate Stain Blocker

  • Country Chic Chalk Paint: Some DIY enthusiasts recommend using Country Chic Chalk Style Paint for painting refrigerators. This versatile paint requires minimal surface preparation and can be sealed with wax or lacquer to provide a durable finish.
  • Zinsser Ultimate Stain Blocker Primer: As an alternative primer, consider using Zinsser Ultimate Stain Blocker. This high-performance primer is specifically designed to bond to challenging surfaces while providing excellent stain-blocking properties.

In conclusion, selecting the right paint for your refrigerator is essential in achieving a professional-looking result that lasts. Consider the options mentioned above based on your preferences and requirements before embarking on this exciting DIY project.

The Painting Process

Now that you’ve selected the right paint for your refrigerator, it’s time to start the painting process. Here are some steps to follow:

  1. Remove all food and magnets from the refrigerator.
  2. Clean the entire surface of the refrigerator with a mixture of warm water and baking soda. This will remove any dirt, grime, or grease that may prevent the paint from adhering properly.
  3. Use painter’s tape to cover any areas you don’t want to paint, such as the handles or the logo.
  4. If there are any rust spots on the refrigerator, sand them down with sandpaper and apply a rust converter before painting.
  5. If you’re using spray paint or a paint sprayer, make sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully. Apply thin, even coats of paint, and allow each coat to dry completely before applying the next one.
  6. If you’re using a brush or roller, use long, smooth strokes to apply the paint. Make sure to apply the paint evenly and avoid drips or bubbles.
  7. Allow the paint to dry completely before applying a final coat or clear coat.

Tips for Painting Your Refrigerator

Here are some additional tips to keep in mind when painting your refrigerator:

  • Make sure to paint in a well-ventilated area to avoid inhaling fumes.
  • Wear gloves and protective eyewear to avoid getting paint on your skin or in your eyes.
  • If you’re using spray paint, cover the surrounding area with a drop cloth or newspaper to avoid getting paint on other surfaces.
  • If you want to add a metallic touch to your refrigerator, consider using gold spray paint for a modern look.
  • After the final coat of paint has dried, apply a clear coat to protect the paint and make it easier to clean.
  • For best results, paint smooth surfaces and avoid painting textured surfaces.

With these tips and the right paint, you can transform your old refrigerator into a stylish and modern appliance that complements your kitchen cabinets and decor.

Selecting the right paint for your refrigerator is an important step in creating a long-lasting, beautiful finish. To ensure that your fridge looks its best, it’s essential to prepare the surface before painting; this includes removing logos and handles, cleaning with baking soda or sugar soap solution, and lightly sanding.

Preparing Your Fridge for Painting

Before you start painting your refrigerator, it’s essential to prepare the surface properly. This will ensure that the paint adheres well and lasts longer. Follow these steps to get your fridge ready for a fresh coat of paint:

Removing logos and handles

The first step in preparing your fridge is removing any brand logos or door handles that might be attached to its exterior. You can use a screwdriver or other appropriate tools to carefully remove them without causing damage. Store the removed items securely, so they can be re-affixed once painting is complete.

Cleaning with baking soda mixture or sugar soap solution

A clean surface is crucial for proper paint adhesion, so make sure you thoroughly clean your refrigerator before applying any primer or paint. Mix some baking soda with Dr. Bronner’s Sal Suds Biodegradable Cleaner, or use a sugar soap solution as an alternative cleaning agent. Wipe down all surfaces of the appliance using a sponge or cloth, ensuring there are no traces of dirt, grease, or grime left behind.

Lightly sanding the surface

To further improve paint adhesion and achieve professional-looking results, lightly sand down the exterior surface of your fridge using fine-grit sandpaper (around 220 grit). Sanding creates small grooves on which new layers of primer and paint can grip more effectively; however, avoid over-sanding as this may cause damage to underlying materials such as plastic trim pieces around edges.

In addition to following these preparation steps closely while keeping safety precautions in mind (e.g., wearing gloves), remember also to allow adequate drying time between each stage of the painting process for optimal results. With proper preparation, your newly painted refrigerator will not only look great but also last longer.

Preparing your fridge for painting is a crucial step in achieving the best results. Applying primer will ensure that your paint job lasts longer and looks great.

Key Takeaway: 


Before painting your refrigerator, it’s important to prepare the surface by removing logos and handles, cleaning with a baking soda mixture or sugar soap solution, and lightly sanding the exterior. These steps will ensure proper paint adhesion and professional-looking results.

Applying Primer for Long-lasting Results

After cleaning and sanding, it’s essential to apply an adhesion-promoting primer such as magnetic primer onto your fridge’s surface. This will ensure long-lasting results when applying your chosen paint type afterward. Proper preparation is crucial in achieving a professional-looking finish that lasts for years.

Using Magnetic Primer

Magnetic primers (Amazon) are specifically designed to promote better adhesion between the refrigerator surface and the paint you’ll be using. These primers contain iron particles that create a magnetic field on the appliance, allowing you more freedom with decorating options like attaching magnets or other decorative elements after painting. To apply magnetic primer, use a foam roller or brush and follow the manufacturer’s instructions regarding drying time before moving on to painting.

Importance of Allowing Adequate Drying Time

Adequate drying time is vital in ensuring proper adhesion of both primer and paint layers. Rushing through this process can result in peeling or bubbling later down the line – not only ruining your hard work but also requiring additional effort to fix any issues caused by improper drying times. Most manufacturers recommend waiting at least 24 hours between each stage (cleaning, sanding, priming) before proceeding with subsequent steps; however, always refer back to specific product guidelines for optimal results.

In addition to following recommended drying times during each step of this project, maintaining proper ventilation during application is equally important – especially if working indoors where fumes may become trapped. Open windows and doors, or use fans to circulate air throughout the space while working on your refrigerator painting project.

It is important to apply primer for a long-lasting finish, allowing adequate drying time between coats. Moving on from the importance of priming, painting techniques are essential for achieving a smooth and professional looking result.

Painting Techniques for a Smooth Finish

When it comes to applying paint on your refrigerator, achieving a smooth and even finish is essential. There are several techniques you can use to ensure professional-looking results while making the process more manageable, especially if you have limited experience in painting.

Foam Roller or One-inch Angle Brush

Using a foam roller or one-inch angle brush, apply at least two coats of your desired color evenly across all areas of the appliance. Make sure to allow adequate drying time between each coat application as this will help prevent streaks and uneven coverage. When using an angle brush, be mindful of maintaining consistent pressure throughout the strokes for optimal results.

Spray Painting Option

If you prefer an alternative method that provides better coverage and convenience, consider using a Wagner Pro 130 Paint Sprayer (Amazon). This technique allows for quick application while ensuring an even distribution of paint over large surfaces like refrigerators. Before starting with spray painting, make sure to cover any nearby objects or areas that need protection from overspray.

Importance of Multiple Coats and Drying Time

  • Durability: Applying multiple coats ensures proper thickness which contributes significantly towards durability against scratches and everyday wear-and-tear.
  • Coverage: Multiple coats help achieve a more uniform appearance by covering any imperfections or inconsistencies in the surface.
  • Drying Time: Allowing sufficient drying time between each coat is crucial for preventing streaks, drips, and other issues that can affect the final finish. Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations on drying times to ensure optimal results.

These strategies can help keep your fridge looking fresh and give it a lasting guard against everyday use, while also lending an individual flair to the kitchen design.

Painting your refrigerator with a foam roller or one-inch angle brush is the best way to achieve a smooth finish. For added character, consider adding wildcat prints around the ice dispenser and fish motif lino print on fridge sections.

Key Takeaway: 


To achieve a smooth and even finish when painting your refrigerator, use a foam roller or one-inch angle brush. Alternatively, you can opt for spray painting while ensuring to cover nearby objects from overspray. Applying multiple coats with sufficient drying time between each coat is crucial for durability against scratches and everyday wear-and-tear as well as achieving uniform coverage.

Adding Character to Your Refrigerator Design

If you’re looking for a way to make your newly painted refrigerator stand out even more, consider incorporating unique designs that reflect your individual style. This creative approach will not only personalize the appearance of your appliance but also add character and charm to your kitchen.

Wildcat Print around Ice Dispenser

A fun idea is adding a wildcat print around the ice dispenser area of your fridge. You can achieve this look by using stencils or freehand painting with a small brush. Choose colors that complement the main color of your refrigerator, such as black spots on a white background or vice versa.

Fish Motif Lino Print on Fridge Sections

Another option is creating fish motif lino prints along different sections of your refrigerator’s exterior surface. To do this, carve fish shapes into linoleum blocks and use them as stamps with paint in contrasting colors against the base coat applied earlier. This technique adds an artistic touch while allowing you more freedom in personalizing its appearance further still.

Beyond these ideas, there are countless other ways to add character to your freshly painted fridge:

  • Murals: Paint intricate scenes or abstract patterns across larger areas for an eye-catching focal point.
  • Inspirational Quotes: Add meaningful phrases or sayings related to food, cooking, family time spent together at meals – anything that resonates with you.
  • Geometric Shapes: Create a modern look by painting simple shapes like triangles, circles, or squares in various sizes and colors.

No matter the design you opt for, make sure to have a blast and let your imagination take over. Make the most of this unique chance to create a personalized refrigerator.

Adding character to your refrigerator design is an exciting way to make a statement in the kitchen and bring some fun into the home. To ensure that this unique design lasts, it’s important to finish off with protective touches such as lamination or sealant.

Painting a Refrigerator: A Guide

Not only is it a cost-effective solution, but it also allows you to customize your appliance to match your kitchen’s decor. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to paint your refrigerator.


Before you start painting, you need to prepare your refrigerator. This involves cleaning the surface thoroughly to remove any dirt, grease, or grime that may affect the paint’s adhesion. You can use a mixture of warm water and dish soap to clean the surface. Once you’ve cleaned it, rinse it with water and let it dry completely.


After cleaning, you need to prime the surface. This step is crucial as it helps the paint adhere better to the surface and prevents it from chipping or peeling over time. You can use a spray primer or a brush-on primer. Make sure to apply it evenly and let it dry completely before moving on to the next step.


Once the primer has dried, you can start painting. You can use a Wagner Pro 130 Paint Sprayer (Amazon) or a brush-on paint. Make sure to apply thin, even coats and let each coat dry completely before applying the next one. It’s recommended to apply at least two coats of paint to ensure full coverage.

Protective Finishing Touches

After applying the paint, it is essential to add two or three coats of protective finish to ensure durability and longevity. A well-sealed surface can keep your newly painted refrigerator looking great for a long time, warding off scrapes, discoloration and the wear that comes with everyday use.

Importance of a Protective Finish

A protective finish not only enhances the appearance of your freshly painted refrigerator but also serves as a barrier against potential damage caused by daily use. It helps maintain the vibrant color and prevents chipping or peeling over time. For added convenience, a clear coat designed for appliances like refrigerators provides an easy-to-clean surface.

Ensuring Durability and Longevity

  1. Selecting an appropriate sealant: Choose a clear coat specifically designed for appliances like refrigerators. Some popular options include Rust-Oleum Appliance Epoxy Clear Coat Spray Paint or Krylon Appliance Epoxy Gloss White Enamel Spray Paint.
  2. Clean application: Before applying the protective finish, make sure there are no dust particles on your fridge’s surface; otherwise, they may get trapped under the coating causing imperfections in its appearance.
  3. Maintaining adequate drying time: Allow sufficient drying time between each layer of protective finish – typically around 24 hours – before adding another coat. This ensures maximum adhesion between layers while preventing any bubbling or unevenness in texture once dry.

Incorporating these steps into your painting process will guarantee a durable and long-lasting finish for your refrigerator. With proper care, your appliance will maintain its fresh appearance and become a unique focal point in your kitchen space.

Transform your kitchen with a fresh new look. Follow our step-by-step guide to paint your refrigerator and make it a unique focal point in your space. #DIY #HomeDecor #PaintingTips Click to Tweet

FAQs in Relation to Painting a Refrigerator

What Kind of Paint Do You Use on a Refrigerator?

The best paints for refrigerators are durable, high-quality options like Behr Premium Ultra Pure Interior Cabinet and Trim paint or Sherwin Williams Extreme Bond primer and Emerald Latex paint. Alternative choices include Annie Sloan Chalk Paint and Zinsser Ultimate Stain Blocker.

Can You Successfully Paint a Refrigerator?

Yes, painting a refrigerator can be successful if the proper steps are followed. This includes selecting the right type of paint, preparing the surface by cleaning and sanding it, applying primer for long-lasting results, using appropriate painting techniques, adding character to your design, and finishing with protective touches.

Do You Have to Sand a Refrigerator Before Painting?

Sanding is an important step in preparing your fridge for painting as it helps create better adhesion between the surface and the new coat of paint. Lightly sanding the entire exterior ensures that any existing glossy finish is removed so that primer and subsequent layers will adhere properly.

Can You Spray Paint Outside of Refrigerator?

Spray painting is an option when refinishing your fridge’s exterior. It provides even coverage without brush strokes but requires additional precautions such as masking off areas not being painted. Make sure to apply multiple thin coats while allowing adequate drying time between each layer for optimal results.


Painting a refrigerator can be a fun and affordable way to update your kitchen. By selecting the right paint, prepping the surface thoroughly, layering primer for enduring results, executing accurate painting approaches, incorporating individuality to your design and finishing with protective touches you can attain a polished and durable finish that will last.

Whether you’re looking to match your fridge with new cabinets or add some personality to your rental apartment’s kitchen space, painting your refrigerator is an easy DIY project that anyone can do. So why not give it a try?

Jane Whitford
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