How to repair the surface of an enamel sink

Written by g.k. bayne
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How to repair the surface of an enamel sink
Porcelain enamel sinks age with time and need repair. (Jupiterimages/ Images)

Kitchen and bathroom sinks, as well as some appliances, are metal covered with enamel. The enamel process adds durability and beauty to a common metal base. Yet, like most things, an enamel sink will age causing peeling, cracking and chipping. While you could send the sink to a professional for repair, you can also spend a DIY weekend refinishing the surface yourself and thereby saving money.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

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Things you need

  • Scouring powder or paste
  • 600-grit wet/dry sandpaper
  • Tack cloth
  • Two-part epoxy
  • Chopstick or small brush
  • Newspaper
  • Painter's tape
  • Enamel-based spray paint

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  1. 1

    Wash the sink with scouring powder or paste to remove residue from the enamel. Rinse well and allow the sink to dry completely.

  2. 2

    Sand the peeling, cracked or chipped areas with 600-grit wet/dry sandpaper to remove loose enamel.

  3. 3

    Rinse the sink to remove any pieces of enamel and dust from the sanding. Again, allow the sink to dry completely.

  4. 4

    Mix the two-part epoxy as directed on the package label.

  5. 5

    Apply the epoxy to the areas where the enamel is chipped, cracked or peeled away from the metal. Use the tip of a chopstick or a small paint brush to apply the epoxy, spreading it out until it fills the problem area.

  6. 6

    Allow the epoxy to dry for at least 24 hours. Sand lightly to even the epoxy with the surrounding area.

  7. 7

    Spread newspaper around the outside of the sink, securing the paper in place with painter's tape. Wrap paper and painter's tape around the faucets and handles of the sink.

  8. 8

    Apply a coat of enamel-based spray paint to the sink. Allow the paint to dry for three to four hours and spray a second coat. Allow the sink to dry for 12 hours or overnight.

Tips and warnings

  • Apply small amounts of epoxy to an area at a time. Smooth it out and continue to apply until the spot is filled before moving on to the next problem area.
  • Kits are available at hardware stores in a wide variety of colours to match your existing sink if the repairs are small.
  • Spraying the sink with an enamel-based paint will restore the lustre of the finish.
  • Avoid scrubbing the sink with any type of abrasive cleaner for at least a week.

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