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Rescuing a vent cover(with paint, of course!)

It’s spray paint this time, though. Spray paint and I go way back….I was spray painting stuff long before I got on my latest furniture refinishing kick. A number of years ago when we lived in our townhouse, I changed all the doorknobs to a brushed nickel finish. It looked great, but the hinges were all still brass. At that point, cheap brushed nickel hinges were not available…all Home Depot carried were ones that cost $10 apiece. At that rate, replacing our hinges would have cost well over $100. I don’t know what made me think of it then, but I went out and bought some spray paint that looked like brushed nickel and just painted all the old hinges. And voila! We had lovely new-looking hinges for a total layout of three dollars.

Since then I’ve spray painted numerous objects(I’ll post pictures of them here and there, hopefully), and rescued a lot of items that would have gotten thrown away otherwise. My most recent painting project was a vent cover. All the covers that were here when we moved in were a sort of ugly, flat brown color. We replaced the ones that weren’t even functional anymore, and I’ve painted the ones that still worked. I used either silver or white paint, depending on the room.

Here’s a brown one:

A little spray paint, and it’s no longer brown!

Doing this outside results in some very unsual-looking vegetation. :p

While I don’t know that spray paint is a particularly green item(maybe there’s an eco-friendly type out there…I don’t know!), I do know that one can of paint can revitalize a surprisingly large amount of stuff that would be garbage otherwise. So, I’m willing to hazard a guess that the overall trash-reducing effect of a can probably offset the small bit of pollution it produces, especially if you consider that by reusing already existing items, you reduce the demand for new items(which create pollution and use resources).

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Wednesday 11th of July 2012

I've read most/all of your painting project posts and I'm wondering... how often do you get paint scraping up (even after doing several thin layers)? How easy is it to clean smudge marks or crayon off of it? I imagine scratches could happen often with the metal vent... And have you ever tried painting something with a vinyl finish? I'm trying to decide if an ugly vinyl-finish bookshelf will only get scratched up as soon as I finish trying to paint it...


Wednesday 11th of July 2012

I haven't had this problem when painting wood's more common with faux-wood finishes, though.

The metal vents hold up pretty well. I've had them for several years and just now they're starting to need a fresh coat of paint.


Tuesday 20th of March 2012

=Your website is awesome. I am just getting started painting furniture that I have rescued. . . .I too have some old vent covers that need repainting. I am just learning about sanding procedures , what is best to use on them, some are a bit beat up but can be salvaged. Do I need to put a finish coat of polyurethane or something on my desk after the final paint?


Friday 14th of August 2009

When I moved in with my roommate, I had two rooms to "fix up". The vents had been painted multiple times over the years. So, I stripped the paint down to the metal as much as possible and spray painted them white. My roommate thought I had bought new ones! I use old newspaper to protect the floor in the garage or in the driveway. I suppose several catalogs from the mail to recycle would work as well.


Wednesday 20th of August 2008

Oooh, a fellow spray-paint fan!

Fortunately, our backyard has been nothing but weeds up to this point, and so it's no big deal if I paint on them. We're getting ready to seed it, but I still have our whole side yard which is shady and weedy. I'll keep the cardboard idea in mind if we ever manage to get a nice lawn going on our whole property! lol


Tuesday 19th of August 2008

We spray paint everything also! We have done the vent covers, hinges, door handles, screw heads...the list goes on! Since I am in the book business, I have alot of great boxes laying around and we cut those open or use the inside as our excess paint receiver. :-)

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