My tenants apartment kitchen baseboard heater cover is rusting in one spot. The rust on the top cover, vent flap and front cover in a small area; not justifying replacing the whole 12' heating cover. What kind of paint should I use to re-finish it and protect from rusting again?
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Baseboard radiators do not reach such a high level of heat that they require high temperature paint. Any of the conventional RustOleum spray paints are adequate. I have used regular spray cans of such covers for years with good results.
I found it was cheaper and a lot easier to just cover them with baseboard heater covers. A product called Baseboarders guarantees no rust for the product's lifetime. www.baseboarders.com
The entire line of Rust-Oleum spray paints can be used on surfaces up to 200 degrees Farenheit. Their Clean Metal Primer meets the same specifications. That combo will work well on your application.
In addition, we sell two high-heat paints at The Store ... both are made by RustOleum and both have the "Stops Rust" label on the container. The advantage (other than higher heat tolerance) is they are both considered self-priming.
They are: Rust-Oleum Specialty High Heat which is labeled to handle 1,200 degree Farenheit and comes in several colors including white, and Rust-Oleum High Heat Automotive which is labeled to handle 2,000 degrees Farenheit and comes in black.
High Heat products often take a little longer to dry between coats, so pay attention to the label depending upon which product you choose.
Simple: remove the rust with 300-grit wet sandpaper, and either primer and paint or use the paint and primer high heat products.
You might be tempted to try Rust-Oleum Appliance Paint which comes in small touch-up bottles, spray cans, and quarts, but resist the urge.
This product is not suitable for surfaces that are exposed to heat.
That baseboard heater should be as good as new in no time!