Reggio Registers

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Buying New Registers vs Refinishing Old Ones

Buying New Registers vs Refinishing Old Ones

July 12, 2021 11 viewed

Have you ever looked at your old registers and wondered “can you paint heat registers?”. If your heating and cooling registers are in need of some TLC, it might be a good time to consider a little DIY project. Whether you’re thinking about buying new vent covers or refinishing the old ones, some sprucing up can make a bigger difference than you might imagine. And the best news? You can do it yourself.

New vs Refinishing

Deciding between giving your old registers a new face or replacing them depends on three things: design, condition, and time. Ready to ask yourself a few questions so you can make the best decision?

Do You Like the Design?

Bottomline here is how you want the finished product to look. Do you like the current design? Or could you go for something different? If you’re ready for a change, consider new registers. If you have the time for a project, maybe all you need is a fresh coat of paint. Can you paint heat registers? Yes! It’s the easiest way to give your heating/cooling registers new life.

Add a little pizazz to your design with a stand-out register that makes a statement instead of trying to blend into the background. Choose new registers from the Heritage collection for our most flexible and popular designs. Or go for the Made To Order collection for custom options and trending designs.

Are the Registers in Good Condition?

Give your registers a close look. Is anything bent or not functioning? If the original covers are in good condition and you like the design of the vent cover, then you can reuse them. However, if the vent covers are bent/broken or you want to go for a different look entirely, new is the better option.

How Much Time Do You Want to Spend on This?

The big difference between new and refinished is how long the project will take. If you want a quick change, new vent cover replacement is faster than refinishing. Refinishing old registers may add an extra day to your project, but most of that will be waiting for paint to dry.

It’s a simple project whether you refurbish existing vent covers or get new ones. No matter how you look at it, the impact is substantial and it’s worth the time you put into it.

Refinishing Step-By-Step

If you decide to keep your old registers, follow these steps to success.

  1. Remove the registers from the wall, floor, or ceiling.
  2. Remove rust with some gentle sanding.
  3. If your vent covers were painted previously, you’ll want to find out how to strip the paint from metal register covers (use a chemical paint stripper or boiling water and baking soda plus a wire brush and steel wool).
  4. Clean and dry the registers.
  5. Spray paint the vent covers with a light coating of primer for metal applications and let dry thoroughly.
  6. Use sweeping motions to spray paint (for metal) the covers with the color of your choice. Don’t forget to paint the tops of the screws as well.
  7. Let them dry for an hour or two.
  8. Rotate the covers 90 degrees then give them another light coat of paint.
  9. Let dry thoroughly.
  10. Reinstall the covers.

The actual amount of work involved in updating existing vent covers is minimal. Start to finish you may spend a day or two, with most of that waiting for paint to dry. Be sure to take the proper precautions with any chemicals. Paint in an area with plenty of ventilation. Invite a friend to assist you in holding a ladder if you’re removing or installing registers on the ceiling.

Can you paint heat registers? Of course. How do you strip the paint from metal register covers? Pretty easily if you have the time to devote to the project. The real question is would you rather buy new registers or refinish your old ones? Either way, you really can’t go wrong.

Get more ideas or see what’s available to purchase new with Reggio.

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