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How to Remove Gloss Paint

Updated February 21, 2017

Gloss paint has proved, over the ages, to be one of the most versatile paints known. It is extremely durable against weather, holds its shine even under harsh conditions, and requires less maintenance than other paints. Nonetheless, there are circumstances that require removing gloss paint, such as damage, streaks or runs over a long period of time, or simply wanting to change colour. Removing gloss paint is not difficult, and with a little practice, and depending on the size of the job, you can complete the job in as little as 2 hours.

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  1. Protect the area surrounding the project. If the gloss paint is inside your home, then cover those areas (like floors and trim) with plastic and secure with masking tape. If the gloss paint is outside, then you still want to pay attention to any areas around the paint that might be damaged by the chemicals used in removing the paint.

  2. If inside, open as many doors and windows as possible and ventilate the area with a fan. The chemical stripper is dangerous to inhale, as well as toxic to the skin.

  3. Scratch the area being removed with your scraper. Because gloss paint is hard to penetrate, you will need to provide an entry point for the paint stripper. By scratching the gloss surface, you will provide a means for deeper penetration.

  4. Apply the paint stripper with a paint brush. Brush the stripper on liberally when applying to the gloss paint. After applying the stripper, try to cover over the wet area, because you don't want the stripper to dry out. Allow the area to set for 15 to 30 minutes.

  5. Scrape the gloss paint off using a paint scraper or putty knife. The paint should scrape away rather easily. Reapply the paint stripper to any paint that does not strip away and repeat step 4.

  6. Warning

    Always wear protective clothing when handling paint stripper.

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Things You'll Need

  • Paint remover/stripper
  • Scraper
  • Masking tape
  • Plastic
  • Dust mask
  • Eye protection
  • Rubber gloves
  • Paint brush

About the Author

Billy McCarley

Billy McCarley has been freelancing online since April 2009. He has published poetry for Dead Mule, an online literary publication, and holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University Of Alabama where he is also a first-year graduate student in history.

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