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    Fireplace Paint & Stove Paint

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    Fireplace Paint Buyer's Guide

    Want to know a cheap way to make your fireplace or wood stove look brand new? Paint it! Over time, even high-quality fireplaces can start looking dull and the finish can rust or chip. Special high-temperature paint is a great way to make it look young again. (It also adds a layer of protection against rust and wear.)

    Rusted wood burning stove

    It's a simple, inexpensive DIY project and you can even paint the fireplace tools to match. Paint is a better option than fireplace polish because the polish rubs off and only gives temporary protection to the finish. Paint, on the other hand, adds a brand new finish in any color you want.

    With so many color options, you can often find one that matches your existing paint so you can touch up any scratches without repainting the whole appliance. You can also use it to paint a vent pipe or other chimneypieces.

    Hopefully, it goes without saying that you must only use fireplace-rated paint. Otherwise, you'll have a major hazard on your hands. In any case, here's the rundown on fireplace paint including the different types and how to apply it.

    What is Fireplace Paint?

    Stove Bright high-temperature paint in assorted colors

    Fireplace paint (aka high-temperature paint, wood stove paint, heat resistant paint) can withstand temperatures ranging from 600 F to 2000 F. Which is, to put it mildly, very hot. The point of making it so heat-resistant is to allow you to use it on fire appliances without worrying about safety hazards.

    In addition to fireplace surrounds and inserts, you can also use the paint inside the fireplace. Other applications include fireplace screens, wood stoves, boilers, and steam pipes.

    Note that the paint is not for use on kitchen stoves, stove burner grates, or steam radiators. Also, don't use the paint on cooking grates that come in direct contact with food. We also don't recommend paint if your wood stove has a vitreous enamel finish (a smooth, glass-like finish) since the paint will not adhere well.

    Types of Fireplace Paint

    Rutland brush-on high-temperature paint

    There are two main types of fireplace paint. The first comes in aerosol cans as spray-on paint. This is the most common type. The second is a brush-on paint that comes in a gallon or pint paint can. The difference is mainly in how they are applied.

    Now, a confession: Many people adore spray paint. It's fast and also incredibly satisfying to see the paint fill in intricate crevices with a uniform layer.

    But everyone who has used spray paint knows it's easy to get unsightly drips if you hold the nozzle too close to what you are spraying. You also have to make sure that you apply the paint in a well-ventilated area and protect other surfaces from any overspray. There's also less coverage per can compared to the brush-on variety.

    Aerosol paint splatter

    On the positive side, the spray-on paint is excellent for appliances with elaborate designs or deep seams that would be hard to reach with a brush. You may need to apply more than one coat, but the coats cure more quickly than the brush-on paint.

    Brush-on gallon or pint stove paint has a thicker consistency and typically requires 1-2 coats. The cans come with more paint, so you'll likely have enough for more than one restoration project. The thick paint works especially well for old appliances made with porous materials like cast iron. Be extra careful to apply it evenly, since it can be harder to get a uniform coat with a brush or roller.

    Also, keep in mind that the brush-on paint takes longer to cure so it will take longer between coats.

    Paint samples color chart

    Now let's talk about colors. In general, spray paint offers more variety in terms of finishes and colors. There's nothing wrong with classic black, but if you really want to branch out, try vibrant colors like rosebud metallic, sky blue, or emerald green. There are also several more neutral options to give you plenty of choices when it comes to matching your decor.  The name of the paint often gives a description of the finish. Metallic colors have a more of a sparkle, while regular colors or "flat" finish paint is not as reflective.

    Leading Brands

    Are you ready to start searching for the perfect color? Stick with quality products that you know will hold up to the high temperatures and stay looking great for years. Here are some top brand recommendations to get you started.

    • Stove Bright: The original Stove Bright aerosol paint was developed for production line workers to cover the occasional scratch flawlessly. It has since become an industry leader for high-temperature paint in both aerosol and brush-on varieties. They come in a wide range of colors so you can match the existing paint or start over with something new.
    • AW Perkins: AW Perkins Co is a leading supplier for chimney cleaning equipment and offers a wide range of products for both professionals and DIYers. Their 1200F stove and grill paint offer protection in a rainbow of colors.
    • Rust-Oleum: Started by a sea captain who noticed that oil stopped rust from eating away at his ship, Rust-Oleum has been in business since 1921. Their specialty high heat spray paint is also rated to withstand up to 1200F.
    • Rutland: Rutland has been making stove and fireplace products for over 130 years. Based in North Carolina, they manufacture in Illinois and supply both professionals and homeowners. They offer quality brush-on and aerosol high-temperature stove paint.

    How To Apply Stove Paint

    There are three phases of a proper application. The first is preparing and cleaning the surface of the fireplace or stove you intend to paint. This could take anywhere from 2-4 hours depending on the condition of the stove. The second phase is the actual application, and the third phase involves the curing process.

    Preparation

    Prepping the surface for the new paint is crucial for getting a nice new finish. Start by deciding whether you need to remove the existing paint coat or whether you can paint over it. If the old paint is badly chipped or rusted away, you may be better off removing it.

    (Safety first! Work in a well-ventilated area and use eye protection and any other safety equipment that the tools you use require.)

    Before you begin, test a small patch of the new paint on top of the old paint. Wait for it to dry and inspect it for any bubbling or evidence of a chemical reaction. Although rare, some old stove or fireplace paint can react with the new paint and create an unsightly mess. If your paint reacts in this way, you'll need to remove it completely before you begin.

    Follow all of the instructions and recommendations for the paint that you choose. For example, solvent (trisodium phosphate) or paint thinner can be helpful in cleaning away soot and oily grime, but some paints are incompatible with solvent. Always use products that you know will work together.

    If you're removing the paint completely, you may want to use a steel wool drill attachment and a power drill. This speeds up the paint removal. Other options include a sandblaster or a sander/grinder.

    If the old paint is not in terrible condition and does not chemically react with the new paint, it is not necessary to completely remove the old paint. Instead, scuff the surface with fine-grit sandpaper or steel wool pad. The goal is to make a rougher surface so the new paint will adhere easily.

    Wipe off all the paint dust with a white cloth so the surface is both scuffed and clean. (You can use paint prep to help clean off the dust you make when sanding.)

    Tape off the glass and any other parts you don't want to paint. You can also use cardboard, newspaper, or drop cloth to protect the surrounding areas from any drips or overspray.

    Applying the Paint

    Once you have the stove completely clean and prepped, you are ready to start painting. Read the instructions on your paint can from start to finish. Some paint may also require a primer to help with the adhesion. Here's a step-by-step overview once you're ready for the main layer of paint:

    Spray Paint

    • Shake the can vigorously to stir the paint. You should hear the marble rattle inside.
    • Test the paint by spraying on a scrap piece of cardboard to make sure the spray is even.
    • Keep the can at least 12 inches away from the surface while spraying.
    • Start near the top and work your way down.
    • Follow the directions for how long to wait between coats and add additional coats if necessary.
    • Cure the paint.

    Do

    • Paint in a well-ventilated area.
    • Follow all the manufacturer's instructions.
    • Wait for the recommended length of time between coats.
    • Wear gloves to keep the paint off your hands.

    Don't

    • Don't apply the layers too thickly.
    • Don't hold the nozzle in one place for too long (this could create pooling or drips).
    • Don't paint when it's too hot or too cold (the paint should list an ideal temperature range).

    Brush-On Paint

    • Open and gently stir the can until it is uniformly mixed.
    • Using a clean brush or roller, start at the top and begin to paint. 
    • Work your way down and around the appliance, being careful to paint evenly. 
    • Follow the instructions for how long to wait in between coats. 
    • Apply an additional coat if necessary. 
    • Cure the paint.

    Follow the dos and don'ts above for the best results. Note that it is also possible to use a paint sprayer to apply the brush-on paint.

    Curing

    Curing the paint makes sure that the heat-resistant properties of the paint are activated. The paint you order should come with specific instructions for curing, but these are some general guidelines. Make sure the area is well-ventilated before you begin curing. We recommend that you have everyone leave the area during the process so that no one breathes the fumes.

    • Wear a face mask in order to minimize inhalation.
    • Fire the appliance up to approximately 100 F - 250 F (according to the manufacturer guidelines) for 15-20 minutes.
    • Gradually increase the temperature of the fire over the course of 45 minutes to one hour to a temperature of around 500 F.
    • Expect to smell an odor from the paint as it dries. You will see smoke coming off of the pipe, this is normal as the paint sets.

    Storage and Disposal of Wood Stove Paint

    Recycling aerosol paint cans

    After you finish painting your fireplace or stove, you might be wondering what to do with the paint can. Brush-on paint is easier to store and can last up to 10 or more years if properly sealed. Avoid throwing spray paint cans in the garbage unless they are completely empty.

    If the spray can still has some paint, lay down several layers of newspaper outside and spray the paint can until no more paint comes out and there is no hissing sound. After that, you may throw the can away. Throwing away partially used spray cans is both a safety and environmental hazard.

    In order to carefully seal any leftover brush-on paint, you may need to clean out the grooves at the top of the can with a rag. Place the lid on the can and lightly tap it with a mallet to seal. Keep the leftover cans in a cool (not cold) space with limited exposure to sunlight. (Don't store them on a damp floor since the cans might rust.)

    There are several ways to dispose of water or latex-based brush-on paint. If only a small amount is left, you can leave the can outside with the lid off and allow the paint in the can to dry completely. You can also use kitty litter to soak up the paint and dry it up in order to throw it away. A third option is to take it to a recycling center.

    Man with a box of recyclable items

    Shipping

    Stove paint orders will ship via small parcel post. When your paint arrives, check the spray nozzle for any damages that might have happened during transport. Also, verify that the color code matches what you ordered. If you notice any issues, contact the manufacturer to request a replacement.

    Summary

    Whether you're looking to cover up a scratch, or planning to refurbish the entire fireplace, high-temperature paint is what you need. Check out the wide range of colors and finishes for a simple way to protect and enhance your appliance.

    Freshly painted wood stove in flat black

    Follow the basic guidelines for preparing the surface and applying the paint and you'll find yourself enjoying a fresh-looking stove or fireplace.

    Do you have any questions about high-temperature paint or how to apply it? Feel free to ask one of our NFI Certified Specialists.

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    Fireplace & Stove Paint Q&A with the NFI Certified Specialists

    * Please Note: All customer questions are answered by our NFI Certified Specialists free of charge!
    27 Questions & 27 Answers
    Sandy
    from Saranac Lake, NY asked:
    June 27, 2020
    Can I use this paint for the two fire-resistant dry walls around my wood stove?
    1 Answer
    The 1200 degree paint would be suitable for use in such an application, yes.
    Submitted by: Tyler M. - NFI Master Hearth Professional on June 29, 2020

    LJ
    from Boston, MA asked:
    May 26, 2020
    Can I paint the brass trim on my fireplace screen?
    1 Answer
    You could indeed paint the trim using any of our high heat stove paints. 
    Submitted by: Brennan W. on May 27, 2020

    Dolly M
    from New York asked:
    May 25, 2020
    Can I use this paint on the inside of my direct vent gas fireplace?
    1 Answer
    This paint is not meant to be used on the inside of a direct vent unit. 
    Submitted by: Brennan W. on May 27, 2020

    William S
    from Indianapolis, IN asked:
    April 27, 2020
    I have a Lopi Berkshire in Oxford Brown, high gloss. Which color would be the best match?
    1 Answer
    This paint is made specifically for your stove. 
    Submitted by: Will M. on April 28, 2020

    Russ
    from Brownfield, TX asked:
    April 11, 2020
    Looking for high temp paint in brown and silver brush on not spray. Do you have this?
    1 Answer
    We do not carry high heat brushable paints in colors.
    Submitted by: Owen O. on April 13, 2020

    Michele
    from Austin, TX asked:
    March 26, 2020
    I want to paint the exterior of my propane RV Magic Chef oven and the range hood, cobalt blue. Can I use this paint?
    1 Answer
    You can use this paint, but it may peel and crack over time, depending on the surface temperature. Each paint should have a temperature rating listed on the item page.
    Submitted by: Tyler M. - NFI Master Hearth Professional on March 26, 2020

    Mitch
    from Long Island, NY asked:
    December 14, 2019
    Which one of your paints will work on a Hearth made of steel?
    1 Answer
    Any of our paints can be used on steel, though you may need to gently sand the surface for proper adhesion.
    Submitted by: Tyler M. - NFI Master Hearth Professional on December 16, 2019

    Christine P.
    from Millbrook, NY asked:
    November 14, 2019
    Can I use any of your paint on my stove top?
    1 Answer
    Yes, any stove paint that is rated over 1200 degrees.
    Submitted by: Owen O. on November 15, 2019

    Cristina
    from Yonkers, NY asked:
    August 22, 2019
    I want to paint the inside of my fireplace. What type of paint should I use?
    1 Answer
    You can use our high temp paint.
    Submitted by: Kathy O. on August 23, 2019

    Eric S
    from San Antonio, TX asked:
    February 25, 2019
    I'm looking for Stove Brite in a gallon can.
    1 Answer
    We're sorry, but we only carry the 12 oz cans.
    Submitted by: Cortney O. on February 26, 2019

    Dawn K
    from Howell, MI asked:
    February 9, 2019
    Does the metallic blue come in a pint for painting?
    1 Answer
    No, it's only available in the spray can.
    Submitted by: Owen O. on February 11, 2019

    Susan S.
    from Port Townsend, Washington asked:
    January 9, 2019
    I have a Napoleon Oakdale fireplace insert. What paint do you suggest I use and what is the best way to apply it?
    1 Answer
    Spray is the best method and most common. You can use any of the Stove Brite or A.W. Pekins paints that are rated 1200+ degrees.
    Submitted by: Owen O. on January 10, 2019

    Ann G
    from Rock Hill, SC asked:
    June 14, 2018
    Can this paint be used outside on a concrete fireplace?
    1 Answer
    Yes it sure can.
    Submitted by: Owen O. on June 14, 2018

    Robin M
    from Gig Harbor, WA asked:
    May 30, 2018
    Can any of your high heat spray paint be used on the fake brick inner liners in a propane fireplace?
    1 Answer
    Yes any of the high heat stove paint can be used to paint the liner inside of a gas fireplace.
    Submitted by: Owen O. on May 30, 2018

    Deborah W
    from dallas asked:
    February 19, 2018
    can i spray my gas fireplace logs another color?
    1 Answer
    Unfortunately, no. Any paint we offer is not meant to be in direct contact with flame and the paint originally used with these logs was a special high temperature paint that is not offered to the general public.
    Submitted by: Will M. on February 20, 2018

    Susan
    from Santa Rosa, CA asked:
    November 28, 2017
    Is this fireplace paint suitable for the veneer brick trim surrounding the face of the fireplace opening?
    1 Answer
    This is indeed suitable for the brick face of your fireplace.
    Submitted by: Brennan W. on November 29, 2017

    Michelle
    from NY asked:
    October 15, 2016
    Can I paint my fake brick inserts?
    1 Answer
    Ceramic fireplace panels used in gas fireplaces can indeed be painted with a high temperature paint.
    Submitted by: eFireplaceStore on October 17, 2016

    Andrea
    from Dallas, TX asked:
    September 29, 2016
    Could you use this to touch up stained concrete in front of fireplace?
    1 Answer
    Our high heat paint could indeed be used to paint the concrete in front of a fireplace opening.
    Submitted by: Brennan W. on September 29, 2016

    Paul
    from Austin, TX asked:
    June 13, 2016
    Can I use this paint on the grates for my gas cook top?
    1 Answer
    The paint we offer is not made for use on grates for gas ranges as it should not come into contact with direct flame.
    Submitted by: Will M. on June 14, 2016

    Felicia
    from Cranston, RI asked:
    May 25, 2015
    Do you need to prime the firebox of a fireplace prior to painting it with heat resistant paint?
    1 Answer
    While it does not need to be primed, it does need to be cleaned before applying the high temperature paint.
    Submitted by: Brennan W. on May 26, 2015

    Jeff
    from Los Angeles, CA asked:
    March 24, 2015
    Can this paint be applied to a cinder block fireplace?
    1 Answer
    This paint can indeed be applied to a thoroughly cleaned cinder block surface. Because of the porosity of cinder block, it would not be a bad idea to first skim the surface with a refractory cement, such as the Rutland Castable Refractory Fireplace Cement - 25 Pound Tub.
    Submitted by: eFireplaceStore on March 24, 2015

    Karen
    from Denver, CO asked:
    August 21, 2014
    What is the average coverage amount for one 12oz can of Stove Bright high heat spray?
    1 Answer
    Per the manufacturer, average coverage is 6 square feet for a 12 ounce can. Average coverage depends mostly on the existing color being covered and the type of metal being painted.
    Submitted by: eFireplaceStore on August 21, 2014

    Susan
    from Cheshire, CT asked:
    November 12, 2013
    Can I use the high temperature paint to create a different look (color) inside a fireplace that is not used and is just for show?
    1 Answer
    As long as the fireplace will indeed be just for appearance, you can indeed change the interior color of the unit with high temperature paint.
    Submitted by: Collin C. - NFI Master Hearth Professional on November 12, 2013

    Rob
    from Panama City Beach, FL asked:
    September 17, 2013
    Will the high heat stove paint properly adhere to ceramic tiles of a ceramic fire box?
    1 Answer
    While the paint will initially adhere to the ceramic panels, it is very likely that it will discolor and begin to flake after a few fires. The ceramic panels usually must be replaced once they begin to discolor or crack, as there is not a product that can effectively restore or patch them.
    Submitted by: Collin C. - NFI Master Hearth Professional on September 17, 2013

    Janet
    from North Carolina asked:
    November 13, 2012
    Can I use this paint to update the brass on the outside doors?
    1 Answer
    The Stove Bright paint can be used to paint the outside of fireplace doors.
    Submitted by: Magan B. on November 14, 2012

    Brandi
    from St. Louis, MO asked:
    November 4, 2012
    Can this be used on a masonry fireplace?
    1 Answer
    Our high-heat stove paint is not suitable for use in a masonry wood-burning fireplace. The high heats from the wood fire will cause the paint to peel and crack.
    Submitted by: Tyler M. - Fireplace Specialist on November 5, 2012

    Sean
    from Petaluma, CA asked:
    October 21, 2012
    Can I paint brick and mortar?
    1 Answer
    It is not recommended to paint over brick and mortar, as the high temperatures often cause the paint to discolor and separate quickly.
    Submitted by: Collin C. - NFI Master Hearth Professional on October 22, 2012

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