Can you Spray Paint on Stainless Steel?

Yes, you can spray paint on stainless steel. However, you need a proper knowledge of specific paints and their usage before you start painting. To ensure a durable painting, you have to follow four major steps. 

The steps include surface preparation, primer application, painting, and sealing. Moving forward, you will get a detailed discussion on these four steps. Moreover, you need some special spray paints such as Krylon, Rust-Oleum, and Dupil Color to paint stainless steel. 

Besides you will also learn about the best spray paints, things you need to know before applying, safety manuals, and other experiments with spray paint. So, let’s get going, shall we?

Spray Paint on Stainless Steel

Comparison Table

Here is a brief comparison table between the major spray paints that I have mentioned in the introduction.

SpecificationsRust-OleumKrylonDupil ColorValspar
Suitable MaterialsMetal, Wood, PlasticMetal and WoodAutomotive and SteelMetal and Steel
ResistantUV-Resistant, Heat ResistantUV and Weather-ResistantCorrosion ResistantHeat Resistant
UsageHome Improvement, Metal Furnishing, Automotive RestorationCommon ApplicationsAutomotive Restoration, Steel SurfaceGeneral Purposes
VersatilityExcellent VersatilityModerate VersatilityNo VersatilityNo Versatility
Comparison Table between the Major Spray Paints

What Kind of Paint can you Use on Stainless Steel?

Before we apply spray paints on stainless steel, you need to learn about some key spray paints. Otherwise, you might purchase and damage the wrong paint for your steel. 

Rust-Oleum Stainless Steel Spray Paints 

Designed to mimic the appearance of stainless steel, the Rust-Oleum spray paint has everything you need. The spray paint offers a specialized finish to the metal surface and extends the lifetime of your steel. For these reasons, Rust-Oleum Spray paints are regarded as an excellent choice by the experts. 

Dupli Color Spray Paint 

If you need to paint your automotive or industrial steels, go for Dupli Color Spray Paint. The spray paints are made of quality components that provide a protective finish and durability. 

Another unique feature of Dupli Color Spray Paint is the improvement of heat-resistance of the stainless steel. As a result, it makes the steel ideal for outdoor and exhaustive use. 

Valspar Premium Stainless Steel Paint 

As versatile as possible, the Valspar Premium Stainless Steel paint offers durability, good coverage, and resistance. Moreover, the paint is suitable for indoor and outdoor. 

Krylon Stainless Steel Finish Spray Paint 

Renowned for its exceptional finishing, Krylon stainless steel paint offers some quality spray paint. Additionally, Krylon spray paint keeps the shine and dazzling touch of the steel, making it a long-lasting product. Moreover, you can expect great coverage and resistance from Krylon Spray Paints. 

Montana Cans Gold Chrome Spray Paint 

Last but not least, you have the Montana Cans Gold Chrome Spray Paint, which provides a high-end and chrome-like finish. By creating a reflective surface, the Montana Cans Gold Chrome Spray Paint suits artistic and decorative aesthetics. 

Best Spray Paint for Stainless Steel

Among the mentioned five spray paints, the Rust-Oleum stainless steel paint offers numerous benefits and top-notch service. Here are some advantages you will enjoy using Rust-Oleum Stainless Steel Spray Paints. 

Durable and Longevity 

The first and foremost benefit of Rust-Oleum spray paint is that it will enhance the lifetime of your steel and ensure high durability. Experts have designed the spray paint to withstand wear and tear, moisture, rust, and other factors. 

As a result, you can expect a long-lasting finish over time and limited touch-ups or replacements. 


You can use Rust-Oleum Spray Paints on wood, metal, and plastic. Therefore, the spray paint is suitable for multi-projects and experiments. Beyond steel imitation, you can use this paint for crafting, customization, and expanding utility. 

Realistic Appearance

Since Rust-Oleum stainless steel contains premium components, the paint can easily mimic the genuine look of stainless steel. Thus, you get a cost-effective method to maintain the sleek outlook and modern steel finish.  Moreover, this realistic appearance will increase the aesthetics of your items without any replacement. 

Things you Need to Know Before Painting Stainless Steel

Before you start painting stainless steel, there are some key factors that you need to consider. Here are some critical points you must know before applying spray paint on stainless steel.

Before Painting Stainless Steel

Surface Preparation 

Surface preparation is the most vital step before you apply spray paint on stainless steel. This will ensure proper paint adhesion on the steel surface and give a smooth texture. Therefore, thoroughly clean the steel surface and remove dirt and grease from each corner. 

Make sure to rinse and dry the surface completely before proceeding to the next step. 


Since stainless steel has a non-porous and smooth surface, you must use the sanding method for solid adherence. You can use fine-grit sandpaper to sand the surface lightly. If your steel surface has grain patterns, sand along that position. 

Paint Selection 

Selecting the perfect paint is crucial to maintaining a decent shine and longevity. Some of the best spray paints are mentioned in the above segment. Make sure to read through the guidelines and take experts suggestions before purchasing the correct paint. 

Application Technique 

While applying spray paint, use even strokes to achieve a successful and consistent finish. It is better to apply multiple thin coats than one thick coat for better coverage. You should note the drying time between coats as mentioned on the packages. 

Safety Precaution

Safety should always be your first priority regarding any operation. Here are three major precautionary steps you need to follow while applying spray paint on stainless steel.

safety precautions applying spray paint on stainless steel


Before you start applying spray paint, make sure you have enough ventilation space around. It’s better to work in an open area or spacious workplace. Moreover, a healthy space will help the fumes disperse and prevent casualty. 

Flammable Hazards 

Spray paints often contain flammable components that can cause massive outrage if not handled carefully. To avoid such havoc, remove the spray paints from flammable objects or extreme heat. 

It is advised not to smoke while applying spray paints on stainless steel. 

Protective Gear 

Initially, gather all the protective gear like gloves, dust masks, and eye goggles. You must keep this gear at your side to protect yourself from the toxic elements and fumes.

Tools You’ll need

There are some essential tools you will need to accomplish the task of applying spray paint on stainless steel. Here is a list of tools and their usage that will be your companion throughout the process. 

Protective Gear 

At first, you need to prepare yourself with all the protective gear for safety. Protective gear includes safety glasses, gloves, and a dust mask. 

Spray Paint and Steel Surface

Of course! Spray paint and steel surfaces are the ultimate resources you need. Make sure to select proper stainless steel from renowned sources. The same goes for the spray paint as well. 

Cleaning Supplies

Make sure to gather all the cleaning resources before starting the process. Degreaser, mild detergent, water, and clean cloths are fundamental cleaning supplies you will need. 


Purchase a high-quality primer that is designed for metal surfaces. A good primer will help the paint to adhere quickly and provide a smooth surface. 

How do I Paint Stainless Steel?

It is time to cover the most critical segment of this discussion. The process of applying stainless steel possesses five significant steps. A broad discussion of these five steps is given below. 

Surface Preparation 

Cleaning the steel surface thoroughly is the primary task before applying spray paint on stainless steel. Use a degreaser to wash away any dirt, oil, or contaminants. Carefully sand the surface with grit sandpaper to create a rough surface. 

Lastly, wipe the surface and dry it out using a solvent like acetone to disseminate any remaining contaminants. Now, your steel surface is ready to paint. 

Primer Application 

In the second stage, you must use a top-notch primer to give the metal surface a sleek texture. You should check the product’s level and determine whether the primer is compatible. Shake the primer well and apply it from 8-12 inches away. 

After completing the task, give a brief inspection to detect any unevenness. Sand the whole surface properly; your stainless steel is now ready to paint. 

Applying Paint 

Before applying spray paint on stainless steel, purchase authentic and accurate ones. Slowly paint the stainless steel with thin and even coats for better coverage. Allow the surface to dry completely before applying the next phase.

For good coverage, apply the spray paint over 2-3 coatings. You have to maintain a consistent distance from the surface to prevent uneven applications. 


After finishing the spray paint application on stainless steel, you need to seal the paint to retain its durability. Use a clear topcoat or sealant to protect the spray paint.

Final Check 

Don’t forget to give a final revision and inspection. Check whether you left any loose ends or untouched parts. Paint that part again and allow it to dry for a bit. After a few hours, you will observe the shine and glow of the steel, and it will be ready to use.

Read Also: How to Get Rid of Spray Paint Smell

Steps to Follow to Paint your Kitchen Sink

There are eight primary steps to follow to paint your kitchen sink. Note that painting your kitchen sink requires periodic touch-ups due to the high-wear area.

Paint your Kitchen Sink


Start the process by removing any accessories and fixtures from the sink. Clean the sink completely with a mild detergent or degreaser to remove dirt and scum. 

Surface Cleaning 

After giving a good wash, sand the sink surface with sandpaper or sandblock. You will get a rough texture by sanding the whole sink. Make sure to sand the surface for an even application. 

You can also use an electrical sander for deep holes, scratches, dings, and rust spots. Follow the manuals properly for in-depth knowledge. 


You can use a painter’s mask, such as countertops or fixtures, to mask off any spot around the sink. Drop some plastic cloths or sheets to protect the sink’s surroundings. 


Now, you can apply a metal primer suitable for your chosen paint type. This will help with adhesion and durability. Follow the primer manufacturer’s instructions, including drying times.


Start applying the paint on the sink when the primer dries up. You can use notable spray paint, acrylic colors, or epoxy paints mentioned in this article. Experts suggest painting it in even coats to prevent drips or streaks. 

Drying and Curing 

Let the final paint coating dry up completely. The process may take a whole day or more. 

Optional Clear Coat 

You can also apply a clear topcoat or sealant for extra protection to the metal sink. This process enhances the longevity and extends the lifetime of the sink. 


After completing the process, make sure the paint has dried up. Reattach the faucets, fixtures, and the drain stopper. 

How do you Get Paint to Stick to Stainless Steel?

To ensure the paint sticks well to the stainless steel, thoroughly clean the steel surface. You must remove all the contaminants and dirt before applying any spray paint. 

After cleaning, sand the whole surface properly to give it a rough texture. You can also use a primer to give it an excellent shape.


Why is my spray paint cracking?

Poor surface preparation, incompatible paints, and improper mixing are the reasons your spray paint cracks. Sometimes, environmental factors can also affect your spray paint. 

To protect your spray paint, ensure a firm surface and select the suitable spray paints. Make sure to read the guidelines and take expert’s suggestions before purchasing. 

Can I paint over cracked paint?

Yes, you can paint over cracked spray paints. But before that, you need to follow some crucial steps. At first, you need to inspect the cracked area to determine the issues. Next, you have to prepare the surface again. 

After preparing the surface, fix the crack and reapply the spray paint on the whole surface. 

How long should I wait for spray paint to dry?

Even though the waiting period varies based on the type of spray paint you are using, the general guideline suggests waiting at least 15 minutes. 

The type of paint, temperature, thickness, and ventilation are the key factors affecting the spray paint drying process on stainless steel. 

Does spray paint peel off?

Yes, if the spray paint doesn’t adhere to the steel surface properly, it will peel off. Poor surface preparation, extreme weather conditions, inaccurate application, and lack of primer are significant factors for spray paint to peel away. 

To prevent the catastrophe, it’s vital to ensure proper surface preparation and selection of authentic spray paints. Also, watch the weather conditions and choose the perfect time to apply the paint on stainless steel.


Simply put, applying spray paint on stainless steel can be complex if you don’t follow strict guidelines. You may also have skin diseases and other rashes using the paints without protective gear. 

Hope the article provides you with enough resources and guidelines to apply spray paint on stainless steel correctly.

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Manuel Elmad

Manuel Elmad has always been interested in technical things. When he was just a kid, he worked in a mechanical shop and learned all about the inner workings of electronics and machines. This sparked his thirst for knowledge and led him to pursue a career in this field. For the past 8 years, He has been working as a technician and loves to learn new things and also helps others to learn. In his spare time, Elmand likes to strike on the keyboard for spreading his knowledge and go hiking with his friends.

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