Small Cabin

Small Cabin Forum
 - Forums - Register/Sign Up - Reply - Search - Statistics -

Small Cabin Forum / Member's Projects and Photos / Fridge for the cabin, on the cheap!
Author Message
# Posted: 20 Jun 2016 10:29 - Edited by: Cowracer

We recently bought a new refrigerator for the house. The old fridge still worked fine, but the wife wanted a new stainless french-door fridge, and what she wants, she gets (mostly). So now we had a new fridge, and a perfectly good old fridge, and a need for a fridge in the cabin. You can see where this is going. The only problem is, the old fridge is 'refrigerator-white', and that color would not go well in the decor of the cabin. All along, I envisioned a black fridge. A good friend has all black appliances and I like the look a lot.

The only solution was to paint the fridge black. Rustoleum make a special appliance epoxy paint that I figured was worth a shot.

First step... Clean the hell out of it. I used Simple Green, a stiff brush and my pressure washer to clean the outside spic and span. A light sanding is recommended, but this paint stuck very well to the fridge without it.

Now at this point I could have just painted the outside of the fridge and been done with it. But I am a bit too meticulous to do that, so I pulled off the doors so that I can paint all the metal 'shell' and all the hardware properly.

Of course, I wanted to keep the overspray off the interior surfaces, so I needed to mask them off.

I first used a strip of painters tape to define the edge, then I used newspaper to finish the masking. It is MUCH easier to do it that way than it is to try to just go straight to the newspaper.

I used the spray cans of the Appliance Epoxy, and as with all spray paints, multiple thin coats are way better than one or two heavy coats. I wound up putting on 4, with about an hour or so between coats.

While waiting between coats, I prepped the doors and the hardware. The biggest unknown to me was whether I could paint the magnetic door seals or not. I was sure the paint wouldn't hurt them, but I didn't know if it would be flexible enough to stay on them after numerous open-close cycles. I thought that the stark white seals on a black fridge would look bad. I decided to go ahead and paint them, but I did not paint the sealing surfaces. I did not want to interfere with the way they seal up.

When it was all done and had a chance to fully dry for a couple of days, I reattached the doors and hardware. Here's where all the effort paid off. When you open the doors, all the metal is black, just like it came from the factory that way.

The finished product. It looks and 'feels' like a factory black fridge. Sometimes when you paint something, it may look right, but there will be something odd about the 'feel' when you run your hand across it. Not this one. I was aiming for a factory-looking finish and that's what I got.

But now I gotta let you in on a little secret. This fridge is going in the corner with a wall on one side, and a pantry on the other. I saw no need to waste paint by painting a surface that will never be seen.

Yep. I might just be a cheapskate. I have not problem spending money where it counts. But I hate to waste it when it is not necessary. On, and anyone with a sharp eye will realize that I got the freezer door handle on upside down. I noticed it when I got it down to the cabin and fixed it on the spot.

Here is the fridge in its final resting place.

Right now, the doors are hinged on the right side, and that makes it a bit clunky. The hinges are reversible, so i'll have to reverse them, but for this trip its good enough. With that, the kitchen area is nearly complete. The black fridge looked exactly how I envisioned it. One of the big pains-in-the-ass is lugging coolers down to the lake, then lugging them back. You always want to make sure you bring enough, so there is always drinks and stuff to put back up when you get home. I am sure I lugged the same can of coke to the lake and home again 4 or 5 times.

So for about $25 in paint, and an old fridge that I would have sold of given away, I have a nice, perfectly working fridge in the cabin. My point in all this is don't be afraid of cheap appliances if they are the wrong color. Changing them takes just a bit of work and a tiny amount of cash, and you can make it just the way you want them.


# Posted: 20 Jun 2016 17:03

You did a super job, Tim! The fridge looks great!

I like the Rustoleum spray paint. I used it on all of the metal trim on my shed. I was surprised by how good the coverage was.

# Posted: 20 Jun 2016 18:16

My truck needs painting. How much you charge?

# Posted: 20 Jun 2016 22:50

Quoting: bldginsp
My truck needs painting. How much you charge?

Not a chance buddy. LOL. My fingers were numb for 2 days after spraying that fridge. I even bough the pistol-grip attachment for the cans. Rustoleum brand and everything, but it did not work. It would not depress the nozzle button far enough. I wound up having to use my finger to push the spray button down like some sort of damned uncivilized savage.

Apparently, they now make the return springs for the spray nozzles out of old chevy v8 exhaust valve springs, by the feel of it...


Your reply
Bold Style  Italic Style  Underlined Style  Thumbnail Image Link  Large Image Link  URL Link           :) ;) :-( :confused: More smilies...

» Username  » Password 
Only registered users can post here. Please enter your login/password details before posting a message, or register here first.