Painting a faucet – 3-month update
It has been over three months since I painted my bathroom faucet and wanted to share a 3-month update on painting a faucet. Here is a picture of what it looks like now:
There is slight wear on the handle, and a little paint has chipped away on the base of both handles.
It was really easy to touch up with a small brush, and overall I am pleased with how well they have held up. This faucet sees a LOT of use. It’s the bathroom on our main floor, and our family and guests use it. Also, I don’t mess around with germs, so this faucet has seen lots of Scrubbing Bubbles. Now that I feel confident about how the paint has held up on the faucet, I painted the faucets in our master bath and my boys’ bathroom. This time, I did use a primer.
It is Rust-Oleum and easy to use. Now, I know you’re not supposed to spray paint inside, but it makes it SO much easier. You MUST make sure you prep the faucet/sink area before you prime and paint.
If you look through the pics above, you can see the before. Next, I taped around the faucets with Frog Tape and used bags to protect the sink. I also completely encased the sink area and mirror/walls with a drop cloth. I did a couple of light/quick coats of primer and then I painted three coats of oil bronze paint. As you can see in the last pic, I did have a bunch of touch-up work despite all my prepping. The excess paint I scraped away with a small flathead screwdriver and/or a rag with mineral spirits. It really was only a 5-10 minute clean-up. It looks MUCH worse. I used a small brush to paint the areas that need a paint touch-up. My only complaint about using the primer (besides an added step) is that the paint did not go on as smoothly as it did the first time I painted a faucet without the primer. I’m curious to see if the primed faucets hold up better than the original unprimed one – I’ll continue to post updates as time goes on.
Hopefully, this 3-month update on painting a faucet was helpful!
Unfortunately, the primer wasn’t very helpful. My faucet without the primer has held up just as well as those I used primer on. The Rust-Oleum paint is pretty amazing on its own!
I did eventually replace all the painted faucets in our home (after 2.5 years). It was a great way to buy time before buying new faucets, but painting a faucet (in my experience) is a TEMPORARY FIX.
To see more about how to paint a faucet click HERE.
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60 thoughts on “Painting a Faucet – 3 month update”
Thank you for your post, this is something I’ve thought (& researched) for some time. To that end, I’ve read several posts about painting faucets (as you did) & THEN applying a clear sealer after the paint dries. The posts didn’t follow up on how their faucet held up after use, thus, I don’t know if this made a difference with the durability of the paint.
To that end, is this something which you considered? I’d ❤️ To know of the sealer makes a difference in the painted faucets ability to ‘hold up?’ time…
Honestly, I painted my faucets thinking maybe I’d replace them in a year or so. That being said, I didn’t worry too much about longevity. I think clear sealer would probably be a great idea. My issue with the primer is that it was clumpy and then the paint wasn’t as smooth looking. The clear sealer wouldn’t have this issue, and I think it would definitely help with durability. My faucets have held up really well (almost a year later), and I’m less anxious to replace them seeing how well they’re doing. Now, I do need to do a little touch up maybe ever 6 months, but we’re talking tiny little spots.
So, I guess I’m saying go for the clear sealer and let me know what you think!
Thanks for the comment and good luck!
The black appliance paint looks like the oil rubbed bronze? Wow, would love to try this! My faucets are already bronze color but it has wore off in several places, can I just paint over these? Thanks for all the lovely ideas!! And do I need a clear sealer put on them?
Thanks for all the great ideas on painting a faucet! Never thought of this!
You can actually buy “oil rubbed bronze” paint – look for that instead of the black!
Hey, just because you mentioned oil base paint and how hard it is to clean up with mineral spirits, I have to share with you the new trick I just learned! Use olive oil instead!!!! Yes! Just olive oil! The paint comes off of your hands in no time. It even worked on a brush that the paint had halfway dried up on. I am so excited to use and share this trick!
Thanks so much for the tip, Phyllis! I will definitely have to try your tip next time. I shy away from oil based paints because of the mess, and I always ruin my brush. You may have given me a new blog post idea… 🙂
I have been spray painting gold ceiling lights, door handles and hinges in my 1980’s home but I do not prime but rather take sand paper and rough up the gold before spraying. This has worked for me.
Tricia – You’re my kind of girl! I definitely am skipping the primer next time. It made the entire process harder. Thanks so much for your comment!
Thanks for all this you great women. I am going to try it now!
Liz, I just replaced my painted faucets – about 2 1/2 years later. It was a great temporary solution until I was ready to buy new faucets. Good luck!
So both are not necessary? I read where you, Sarah, preferred to skip the primer step because your unprimmed faucets turned out just as nice. I would love to skip the sanding step. If I spray primer on my chrome w/o sanding will that work.
I didn’t have much luck with the primer I used (but I have read other tutorials where people loved their primer – maybe I used the wrong kind), but I would definitely recommend sanding so the paint has a better chance of sticking and staying put.
Hi there, I’m thinking of trying this is our half bath. We have a brass faucet as well as a brass light fixture. We will be replacing them at some point but in the meantime, I want to ‘fix’ both. I am planning on removing the faucet and spray-painting with Rustoleum Oil rubbed Bronze. I know you used the primer this time, just wondering if it seems to hold up better than the faucet you painted without primer? Or is it still too early to tell? I’d be happy to skip this step as well.
Actually, just noticed the paint I have says primer + paint. So maybe that answers my question 🙂
Hi Kristie! Primer + Paint? I think you lucked out! To answer your earlier question, I probably wouldn’t waste me time with primer if I did it again. That Rustoleum paint is pretty amazing on it’s own. You can sand a bit, but I wouldn’t do primer again. My original faucet (sans primer) is holding up amazingly well! Good luck!
You did a great job on these. I realy love how they look, and you saved a lot of money. I did the same with my kitchen cabinet hardware and some of the handles looked very worn after about a year… so I got some black appliance paint and painted them with that. I tooks just like the oil rubbed bronze but holds up better.
Good to know – thanks Tina! I always love getting tips from you readers!
Would this also work on a sink? The faucets look great!
You know June…I don’t know. I know people have painted sinks, I just am not sure what kind of paint they use. Thanks for the comment and good luck!
to paint a sink or any porcelain surface you need to use epoxy paint.
Thanks for the advice, Wanda!
This looks so wonderful! Does the drain hold up as well? I would love to do this in my old house.
Hi Barb – the drain actually holds up better than the handles. I have had to touch up the handles, but never the drain. (?!) Good luck and thanks for the comment!
I just sent this link to my Sister-in-law, she has a house full of “gold” faucets and door knobs she absolutely hates!! I see a project on my next visit! Further I was trying to clean hard water stains (that my husband says we don’t have!!!) around the base of a bathroom faucet and inadvertently scratched the heck out of it, I think I’ll start there! I’ll take it out to paint though since those hard water stains (that we don’t have!) are still there! You rock Sara!
Hi Eileen – I’m so glad I could help! Good luck to you and your sister-in-law! I appreciate the comment and have a great weekend!
The best thing to use to clean hard water/mineral deposits is white vinegar sprayed on with a spray bottle. Try it, it really did a great job on the tile in my friend’s bathroom as well as my glass shower door – they look like new.
Thanks for the suggestion, Tony!
We have oil rubbed bronze spray painted every door knob, hinge, light fixture, in our house. The best advice is if it is touched regularly (ex. Door knob, faucet) you must do a coat or two of spray poly on it for durability. We do not use primer or rough up the surface, only clean it thoroughly. I ended up here because our next step is hand painting with the quart jar our bathtub fixtures. I will probably end up poly’ing the in tub fixtures and not the shower head.
Thanks for the great tip, Jennifer! I’ll have to pass that one along. I appreciate you stopping by and taking the time to comment. Good luck on your bathtub fixtures!
love the blog! Look forward to more posts.
Thanks so much, Dorothy!
AHHHHmazing, someone recently suggested how great my rustic appearing refinished cabinet would be with oiled bronze faucets (currently they are chrome. Before reading your suggestions I was going to spring for new, now I have another project added to my list. Thanks so much.
I hope it works out for you, Roberta! Your rustic refinished cabinet has me intrigued! My faucets have been painted for over a year now, and they still look pretty good. I have had to do touch up a couple times, but it’s worth for now. Someday I’ll replace the faucets, but this is such a great inexpensive fix for now!
Thank you! I have two great extra tall faucets that I love except they are chrome and the rest of the bathroom is Oil Rubbed Bronze. Just bought my can of paint for those -plus a basement faucet-and can’t wait to see the results!
Good luck, Sarah! I hope it works out for you!
Looks fabulous! I am hearing comments that the fumes are extremely toxic and will give you a headache even using a fan and adequate ventilation! What was your experience?
Hey Marcia! I don’t remember having issues with this paint. The faucet is such a small surface area, and I painted it in short increments. (I painted and allowed it to fully dry before the next coat.) So no, I didn’t have issues with the fumes. I hope I helped!
I painted my drawer knobs with this stuff they came out sticky I was very disappointed had to replace . Looked good but were very sticky even after one year couldn’t handle it anymore using them daily. Jut my opinion
That’s such a bummer, Wanda. I’m sorry that you had problems with it!
I love this paint. After spray painting a bright gold tone “antique” bed frame with the oiled Bronze I am addicted. I spray painted all my gold tone door handles, hardware on doors and shower rod. I didn’t us a primer but my bed frame has a few nicks on it. I will eventually spray paint it again and apply a spray paint sealer. For now I just use a small foam paint brush, spray the Oiled Bronze on and use it to touch up nicks.
I love to hear this, Cyn! This paint is amazing, isn’t it?! (And I love your touch up idea.)
I love this idea. I’m seriously considering painting my entire sink with this paint! Overkill? I can’t find one tutorial on a painted sink other than using tub and tile paint, which is usually only white and pretty pricey. I’m thinking about using a marine varnish for a sealant, it’s made to hold up to water, heat, uv rays, etc… Worst case scenario, I buy a new sink, it can’t look much worse than it does now! Thanks fir this tutorial!
I’d love to know if it works – please keep me posted! You’ll never know if you don’t try, right?!
Great ideas for renovating faucets!! Is there any good tips for removing hard water white stains from steel faucets permanently?
Unfortunately I don’t have any suggestions. I just painted over mine, but I’d love to hear if any readers know some good tips. Please chime in!
Hi Sara, I found this video been shared on twitter by one friend of how to remove hard water deposits from faucets. Hope this would help. Felt like sharing here.
Hi Sara, I have been reading your blog and the suggestions given by your readers. I have been trying to replace a drain on a powder room bathroom sink, but have not been successful. There is not enough space in the back of pedestal sink, 4 inches is too tight to turn a wrench. I used every tool known in plumbing. I did manage to change the faucet out. But, since I can’t change the drain ring with out taking the sink off and pulling half of the sheetrock out, I decided I will paint the ring to match. I just have to find the right color. I read that the consensus is to NOT use a primer, but a primer with paint, or just oil based paint with a sealer. Sara, you mentioned Rust-o-leum as your oil based paint. What kind of sealer would you recommend?
Hi Grace! I actually did not use a sealer. This painted faucet was supposed to be a very temporary thing, but here I am close to 2 years later. If I had known it would be long(er) term, I would have used a sealer. I found someone who painted faucets, and they talk about a specific sealer: http://diykindagirl.blogspot.com/2012/01/painting-bathroom-faucet.html
Hope this helps and good luck!
Great info! Thanks for the detailed report and the updates!
Hi Sara! I love all of your ideas. Can bronze paint be purchased in a spray can? Seems like it would be easier. I hope that hasn’t already been addressed but I don’t have time to go through all of the comments. Thank you for sharing your fantastic projects with us.
Hi Vicki, yes you can buy in in a spray paint form! I didn’t feel like messing with spray paint inside and/or taking of the faucet to paint it which is why I used the brush on version.
Does the primed faucets hold up better than the original unprimed?
Hi Paula, no it doesn’t. My unprimed faucet actually looked the best of of the bunch, but I don’t know if this is because of the lack of primer or because it was the first faucet I did (and I spent more time carefully painting it). I just replaced the unprimed faucet last week. For 2.5 years, the paint held up fairly well. It just required the occasional touch-up, and I was tired of the maintenance. I hope this helps!
I was thinking if trying rustoleum on my brass fireplace. I too bought a 90’s house! Any advice to this end?
Hi Susan! Rustoleoum makes a high-heat paint, and I would suggest using that. Good luck!
I have used the paint on knobs for doors also ,on ceramic lamps .Also taken brass ceiling fans and used the same paint you used to paint the hardware . Love it
Love it Barbara! You sound my my sort of person – paint everything!