How to Remove Paint With a Grinder

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The task of removing old paint can prove even more unattractive than the paint itself. However, providing a clean surface makes up an essential part of preparing the site for a new paint job or other decorative plans. Remove existing paint with a grinder to make the process easier and less time-consuming.

Things You'll Need

  • Respirator mask
  • Protective gloves
  • Protective eyewear
  • Electric grinder
  • Metal brush
  • Wear a respirator mask to protect yourself from fumes and dust---especially if working with lead-based paint. Put on protective eyewear and gloves as well.

  • Attach a metal brush that fits your paint grinder.

  • "Power on" the grinder and move the brush back and forth against the surface from which you want to remove the paint.

  • To remove paint more quickly, press the button that allows for depth control to allow the brush to make deep contact with the surface, providing an abrasive contact.

  • Rub the surface with mineral spirit (a paint-thinning solvent to remove paint from surfaces) to finish the job.

  • Rub dry with a clean cloth.

Tips & Warnings

  • Shine a work light on your project is a good addition, especially in darker areas. This helps with visibility as old paint flies away and dust collects.
  • Use gloves or a scraper if you need to touch or remove anything from your work surface, which may become extremely hot.
  • Take frequent breaks to allow the work surface to cool.
  • Clean your grinder after every use to keep it working in prime condition.
  • Wear eye protection even if your grinder has a built-in eye shield; sparks, metal pieces, paint debris and dust can still enter your eyes.
  • Tie back any loose hair, and avoid loose clothing that could get caught underneath the grinder.
  • Do not force the grinder to remove tough paint, as it can cause unwanted or unexpected damage.

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