If you have rusted metal windows, I have the perfect way to transform them! All you need is a few basic materials and tools, and you can make your rusted metal windows look brand new in just a few hours!
What You’ll Need
- Sandpaper OR Wire Brush, Steel Wool, Scouring Pad
- White Vinegar & Cleaning Cloth
- Newspaper OR Plastic
- Painter’s Tape, Masking Tape
- Spray Paint
- Safety Wear: Goggles, Mask, Gloves (Please use at your discretion)
Choose Your Spray Paint Wisely…
There are a number of spray paints on the market with rust control. Because you’ll be spray painting metal, you’ll want to protect the surface from future rust. I really like both Krylon and Rustoleum for projects like this. The Krylon spray paint I used is a paint + primer in one. I typically prefer matte spray paint, but I chose the satin finish since I like window frames to be wipeable, with a soft sheen.
#1 Sand the Metal
Using sandpaper, or some type of scouring material, sand the metal window frames to remove the existing rust.
#2 Vacuum Everything
Using a shop-vac, you’ll want to clear the window frames of any dust or debris. Take this opportunity to see if you need to do any more sanding.
#3 Clean the Frames
I like the simplicity of white vinegar and a clean cloth to clean household items. Just dampen your cloth and wipe the surface to clean the leftover dust before painting. As long as you just dampen the area, the dry time won’t be very long. Once dry, you can continue.
#4 Tape & Cover
Use old newspapers + tape to cover any areas that you don’t want to get painted. This would include glass and wall areas. Masking Tape & Painter’s Tape both run nicely along edges. I used masking tape on the glass mostly because I was almost out of painter’s tape, and I wanted to use painter’s tape on any parts of the wall. I chose to cover the edge areas with just tape first to get a clean edge. Then, over that, I covered the inside areas of glass or the outer areas of wall with newspaper that was also taped. If you’re thorough, you won’t have any mistakes to fix–and you’ll be happy you took the time to do it!
#5 Get Ventilation Going
Spray paint needs to have ventilation–it’s a good idea to open any other windows in the area to get ventilation. Beccause these windows are in the basement, I only have 3 of them. I opened two while working on the first one. Spray paint doesn’t take long to dry, so once the first one was dry, I was able to do the next one. I also opened windows in our upstairs and had a fan going to move the air.
#6 Spray the Frames
If you’ve spray painted anything, you know that the best way to do it is to lightly spray over the areas to reduce the chance of drips. If you do light coats, you’ll be able to get through spraying in just one session. If necessary, leave the room for 15 minutes so the spray paint has a chance to dry, and then come back to give it another coat. I was able to get the right coverage without the need for a second coat.
#7 Remove the Tape
After 15 minutes of dry time, you can remove all the tape and coverage. At this point, the paint should be mostly dry, possibly a little tacky. Take care when removing as to not bump or scrape areas of paint. (If you watch the video, you’ll see me remove everything almost immediately.)
What Else Did I Do?
After spraying the windows, I noticed the screens were beyond repair and the windows outside were really dirty. So, I decided to rip out the screens. We never use these windows, so the screens really hold no purpose. The windows were easy enough to clean, but beware: Those window wells are deeper than you think, and it’s easy to fall! (My ego was the only thing hurt in the making of the video.)
Step Back & Enjoy Your “New” Metal Windows!
Honestly, I wish I had done this years ago! This one afternoon completely changed the look and feel of our basement.
Are You Ready to Transform Your Rusted Metal Windows?
Let me know if you have any questions. I’d love to help you take step to fix up your home. We all have things that annoy us about where we live…but with a little elbow grease, you can make your house a home! Find me on Instagram to see more of my upcoming DIY adventures.
If you think the windows look great during the day, look how amazing they look at night!