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"Powdercoating a vintage cast iron kitchen sink"

An ongoing discussion from 2005 through 2014 . . .


Q. I am a homeowner remodeling a 1919 craftsman home. I'd like to know if powdercoating my vintage kitchen sink/drainboard would be an appropriate solution. It is etched and has some porcelain chips, but fits the space and age of my home. Would the powdercoat finish be appropriate for the hard wear a kitchen sink would get?

Dana Gronemyer
homeowner - Coquille, Oregon, USA

June 11, 2009

A. I had this done. It was a lot of work to chip off the old porcelain and they used a blowtorch too. had the sink about a month--so far so good. Cost $500 to refinish in Los Angeles.

Caroline Collins
- San Pedro, California, USA

March 10, 2011

Q. Hello Caroline,

How has your sink held up? We are thinking of doing the same.



Albert Reano
- Los Angeles California USA

March 18, 2011

A. It actually hasn't held up very well. It's got hairline cracks, and the bottom of the basin eroded through use and is usually stained back, and can't be cleaned.

It could be that they did a bad job, but I know they had trouble related to the thickness of the cast iron. Apparently that makes it harder to get the powdercoat to adhere.

I do have a lime green sink, and that's a win, but don't look in the basin.

Caroline Collins [returning]
- San Pedro, California USA

May 21, 2011

A. No one should consider refinished kitchen sinks to actually use in every-day kitchens. Porcelain sinks are furnace fired ceramic glass porcelain. Refinished sinks are painted, yes, even powder coated ones are simply dry paint melted onto the surface at just over 300 °F. It will never last. Try to buy a used sink in good or useable condition. If the basin is worn thru to the cast iron, put a rubber mat in the basin to cover it up. I see Albert looking to refinish. I suggest that he lives with the existing finish which is rougher than some. Or get a sink that has a better finish.

I would suggest that everyone avoid a refinished sink.

Ken [last name deleted for privacy by Editor]
antique kitchen supplies - Gardner, Massachusetts, USA

To minimize search efforts and to offer multiple viewpoints, we combined previously separate threads onto this page. Please forgive any resultant repetition, failures of chronological order, or what may look like readers disrespecting previous responses -- those other responses may not have been on the page at the time :-)

Will powder coating a kitchen sink restore the porcelain look?


Q. Can powder coat be used refinish the glaze on an antique kitchen sink?

Norman F. Peschke
maintence - Bloomingdale, Indiana, USA


A. Powder coating it can make it look good if it's done right, but if it's going to be used, you should restore it properly.

Sheldon Taylor
Sheldon Taylor

supply chain electronics
Wake Forest, North Carolina


November 2, 2014

A. Hi. As Ken notes above, porcelain is not paint or anything like paint -- it is much more like a layer of white glass or china melted onto the cast iron at glass melting temperatures. Powder coating is very thin melted plastic, and neither paint nor powder coating offers anything approaching the durability of porcelain.

Re-porcelaining services might exist, but we're not aware of any. Note that "porcelain enamel" or "porcelain paints" are not like melted glass, they are more like sand paint -- paint with ceramic dust mixed into it.


Ted Mooney, finishing.com
Ted Mooney, P.E.
Striving to live Aloha
finishing.com - Pine Beach, New Jersey

August 8, 2016

Q. Can you powder coat the outside of a porcelain tub and bake it at 400 degrees and not harm the porcelain on the inside?

Chandler Eidson
- Senoia, Georgia

August 2016

A. Hi Chandler. I don't actually know, but unless you find someone who has done it successfully and repeatedly, I wouldn't risk it. Paint is not terribly different from powder coating in end result, so I'd just paint it.


pic of Ted Mooney
Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Striving to live Aloha
finishing.com - Pine Beach, New Jersey

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