One online search and you’re flooded with beautiful pictures of bathroom fixtures, a can of spray paint, and big promises.

“So easy!” they said. “Amazingly simple!” they said. “No prep involved!” they said.

Like most things in life, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

gold faucet ready to be repainted

The good news is you actually can spray paint your faucet and it really does look absolutely beautiful. The difference between a metallic spray paint and an original ORB faucet is virtually indistinguishable. They hold up over time with lots of use and it’s an inexpensive update.

The bad news is, it’s not as simple as you might expect. Painting outdated faucets and fixtures takes some time and preparation to do it right. To help you out, here is everything you need to know about how to spray paint your faucet correctly to get the results you want.

black painted bathroom faucet

    First, grab your sandpaper and get excited. It helps if you can remove the handles that is helpful, but not necessary. Sand the surface of the all of the metal pieces completely. Use 220 sandpaper and when you think you’re done, sand a little more. Sanding takes off the sheen that is already on there, it allows the spray paint to penetrate more fully and create an even finish.

    After all the surfaces are sanded go back over them with steel wool and finish with a damp cloth to be sure all the dust is removed from the surface.

    Next, you need to tape off all of the metal areas of the sink. Even if you can remove your handles, you still need to paint the plug and the metal drain in the bottom of the sink so they match.  Use painters tape to carefully protect the sink around the drain.

    You need to cover more than a few inches around the drain and handles, brown paper covering or a plastic tarp work well. Be sure to cover at least 12 inches in each direction to ensure you don’t accidentally spray-paint your sink or countertop.

spray painting a bathroom faucet

    Now that everything is finally prepped, you’re ready to start painting (almost). Start with a primer. Because you’re painting metal, automobile paints work best. Follow the directions exactly. Each spray paint brand is a little different, but making permanent home changes is not the time to cut corners. Follow directions exactly.

    Once the primer is completely dry, you can follow with your choice of metallic spray paint. Most brands recommend you wait 48 hours until you apply a second coat. Again, follow the directions exactly, which might mean your bathroom or kitchen faucet is unusable for a couple of days.

bathroom faucet painted silver

    After the second coat, wait until the pieces are dry to the touch before removing the tape and reassembling. However, you still need to wait several days to allow the paint to cure completely before using the faucet as normal.

    Some experts recommend using a topcoat, others say it is unnecessary. If you use one, be sure you find one intended for cars.

Want to learn about other spray paint projects?  Check out this article OR this one for more tips on spray painting.

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Spray paint your faucet to save money on your next makeover in your kitchen or bathroom.
Spray paint your faucet to save money on your next makeover in your kitchen or bathroom.