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How to Paint a Cast-Iron Fireplace

Updated February 21, 2017

Rejuvenate the appearance of your fireplace by refinishing it with the correct coating. If your fireplace is made of cast-iron, it is important to consider adhesion. Metallic surfaces won't accept paint adhesion because they are nonporous. Combat this by treating the fireplace with an acidic etching primer. Once the cast-iron fireplace is primed, it will accept a colourful painted finish. Select one specifically formulated for surfaces exposed to high heat or paint failure will occur.

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  1. Use a sponge to wash your cast-iron fireplace with a degreaser. Rinse the fireplace using wet rags.

  2. Protect areas next to the cast-iron fireplace using painter's tape. Protect the hearth using a dust sheet.

  3. Use a soft polyester brush to coat the cast-iron fireplace with etching primer. Move the brush vertically across the cast-iron, applying consistent, soft pressure. Allow the metallic fireplace to dry for two hours.

  4. Wash the brush using fresh water.

  5. Paint the cast-iron fireplace just as you primed it. Let the cast-iron dry for two hours.

  6. Warning

    Use a high-temperature enamel on cast-iron fireplaces or the finish will bubble and peel. Never use nylon brushes to finish cast-iron fireplaces or flaws will show in the finish. Don't paint unprimed cast-iron fireplaces, or expect peeling. Never use ordinary primers on cast-iron fireplaces, or expect poor durability.

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Things You'll Need

  • Water-based degreasing cleanser
  • Coarse sponge
  • Rags
  • Towels
  • Dust sheet
  • Heavy-duty fabric dust sheet
  • Blue painter's tape
  • Galvanised metal etching primer
  • 3-inch polyester paintbrush
  • High-temperature enamel

About the Author

Ryan Lawrence

Ryan Lawrence is a freelance writer based in Boulder, Colorado. He has been writing professionally since 1999. He has 10 years of experience as a professional painting contractor. Lawrence writes for High Class Blogs and Yodle. He has a bachelor's degree in journalism and public relations with a minor in history from the University of Oklahoma.

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