Apartment Radiator Covers Refurb?...Help/Suggestions

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by SPEIRMOOR, Feb 7, 2013.

  1. SPEIRMOOR

    SPEIRMOOR Been here awhile

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    So we're going to paint our Apt but we need to take care of these radiator covers and frames first. We have 5 in total. Each have about 30 years of paint on them. The valve access hatch are beat up too. I was thinking of sandblasting them down to bare metal. Is this a good idea or would some sort of chemical be better? The frames (also metal) are built in to the wall so they will definitely need some kind of chemical to strip them. Any suggestions?

    Here is the type I'm referring to
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    #1
  2. boardrider247

    boardrider247 Weekend Anarchist

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    Personally I would have them sandblasted.
    Getting chemical stripper in the louvers will be a pain.
    #2
  3. A-Bone

    A-Bone Indubitably

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    #3
  4. Wasser

    Wasser Spilt my beer

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    I had mine stripped and powder coated.

    I just have baseboard heat but, they still have all those metal covers.

    I'll snap some picts when I get home tonight. We have several different colors we chose for different rooms.

    They look incredible!!
    #4
  5. H96669

    H96669 A proud pragmatist.

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    We had the same at my parent's place, built in the thirties. 30 years???....start thinking lead paint.

    You need some sheet metal pliers, if just to straighten up them louvers.
    #5
  6. ttpete

    ttpete Rectum Non Bustibus

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    Take them to a commercial paint stripper. Take anything else metal you need stripped. Everything will come back completely bare and ready for paint. I did this with all my heat registers and switch and plug plates.
    #6
  7. Beezer

    Beezer Long timer

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    don't know if such businesses still exist but there used to be a company here that refinished furniture & they had a giant vat of stripper.... like big enough to drop a desk into. they stripped some stuff for me cheaper than I could buy the materials for.
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  8. ttpete

    ttpete Rectum Non Bustibus

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    They're still around. The one closest to me does a lot of work for the auto companies stripping racks used for holding parts to be painted. The overspray will build up over an inch thick on them.
    #8
  9. Wasser

    Wasser Spilt my beer

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    Hey speirmoor,

    Here are a few pictures of the baseboard heater covers I had stripped (2-3 layers of paint) and powder coated.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    The top one is from my basement. We had them done in a "pewter" color.

    The next one is our living room. They where done in a "acanthus" green.

    The last one is one of my daughters rooms. It was done in "signal yellow" Don't ask me. . . . that is what she wanted. :fpalm
    #9
  10. SPEIRMOOR

    SPEIRMOOR Been here awhile

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    Great info guys and thanks for responding. Any suggestions for the frame that will have to be done in situ?
    #10
  11. H96669

    H96669 A proud pragmatist.

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    Are you sure you can't remove them right off the wall and plug the pipes temporarily? Take the cover off then you can see what you are up against.

    They should also have a bleeder type thing to get the air out, we used to do that once a year before winter otherwise they can be a little noisy.A little water hammer against the air pockets can wake you up at night. Other than that they only ping and crack, great sounds from my childhood.:wink:

    Been a very long time but we had to remove some at my dad's place to fix leaks, I don't think they were all that difficult to remove.Bloody things are heavy enough they never had to secure them all that much.

    If you can't remove them get that paint tested for lead before you disturb it.
    #11
  12. troidus

    troidus Long timer

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    Only if he wants to spend all of eternity pulling permits and following lead sequestering protocols every time he sneezes. No test = plausible deniability.
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  13. Beezer

    Beezer Long timer

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    chemical stripper. glob it on and cover it with clear plastic like Vizqueen or commercial trash can liners. the plastic helps the stripper stay in place and prevents the solvent from evaporating. you can move the stripper around under the plastic and even work it bit & check how it's doing. if you are lucky 90% of the paint will stay on the plastic when you pull it off.

    be sure to mask around the part to keep it off the wall.

    I have stripped parts upside down by pouring the stripper on the plastic first & raising it to the part
    #13
  14. SPEIRMOOR

    SPEIRMOOR Been here awhile

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    There was some lead paint disclosure when we got the place. Must dig it up and see what it states.
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  15. H96669

    H96669 A proud pragmatist.

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    Never mind permits.....protocol is good to know if only for your own health. Plenty of lead paints in my house and some asbestos. All gone or covered now and for a lot less than some I know who went playing the game of inspections/permits.

    Had a little fun at work with the asbestos protocol lately, fire doors are still full of them but some of our engineers are trained in the "protocol". Lots of old marine lead paints left around, no need to ignore the protocols they are there to protect you and not all that complicated if you choose to read them and proceed without permits.:wink:

    Paint shops will do lead tests up here, unless things have changed a lot in the last few years, I don't think they'll call the inspector for a positive.:wink:
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  16. troidus

    troidus Long timer

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    I'm not suggesting he use a belt sander and scatter dust everywhere, nor am I suggesting that he should ignore hazards. What I'm saying is that if the presence of lead is "unknown" and remains so, his life will be easier. Once there's a documented discovery of lead, then he has to follow the letter of the law, not just the spirit. And he has to disclose his discovery when he sells.
    #16
  17. Tmaximusv

    Tmaximusv Been here awhile

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    Whole lot cheaper and easier than chemical stripper is a hot water bath with dish soap. Normally used on small parts but still effective. Old paint will slide right off and you'll find the first coat of paint from the factory well adhered under all of it.

    If you are serious about only 30 years of paint on them, you're fine for not finding lead based paint since nothing sold after 78 could have lead in it. Even shortly before 78 it was being phased out.

    Whatever you do, don't go looking for lead! Can you say superfund site and your LL will have a conniption.
    #17
  18. Beezer

    Beezer Long timer

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    looks like the last coat was 30 years ago :rofl

    I think the break over point on lead paint is latex/enamel. the old oil based enamel paints had white lead as a main ingredient. I could be wrong but I am pretty sure the latex paints didn't used it. trick is telling the difference... some of the old enamels are easy to spot, but maybe not if they have been re-coated a few times. the gument says you can't tell the difference.... and a home test kit is not reliable, only a pro can test (opening that can o worms).

    wet stripping is the best way to remove the old lead paint anyway because scraping, sanding, and/or heating releases the lead & spreads it all over the place.
    #18