Older buildings or houses likely have aluminum window frames. Aluminum frames help conserve energy, but they may look bland. After being exposed to the elements, or you may want a different color to match an updated paint job on the home's exterior.
Instead of replacing the windows, consider repainting the frames. Aluminum frames on the inside can be painted with standard paint, while the outdoor frames need a paint formulated for outdoors. Here are tips to paint aluminum window frames:
Prepare to Paint
You need the following supplies:
- work gloves
- eye goggles
- step-ladder (optional)
- drop cloths or newspapers
- painter's tape
- steel wool pad or plastic brushes
- water-based degreaser
- liquid dish soap
- vinegar or baking soda
- 100-grit sandpaper paint brushes
- metal paint and galvanized etching primer
When you work inside, open a window to ventilate. Mix liquid dish soap in warm water, and scrub the window frames with a steel wool pad or plastic brush. Use a degreaser to remove stubborn grime.
If the window frame is stained, try to remove it with a rag dampened with some vinegar, or mix enough baking soda in water to make a paste. Rinse the cleaner with a hose or damp rags, and let the frames completely dry.
Sand and Prime
Set a step-ladder on flat ground, so you can easily reach the frames if needed. Place painter's tape around trims, and other areas you don't want to get touched by paint or sand dust. Spread drop cloths or newspapers under the windows.
Sand the frames with the 100-grit sandpaper, and wipe sand dust. Sanding roughs up the surface, so the paint sticks better. Apply a coat of primer with the paint brush, and let it dry.
If you are using spray paint, shake the can for the amount of time suggested by the manufacturer, and hold the nozzle one foot from the frame. After the primer dries, check for bubbles, and sand them off the surface.
Paint the Frames
Stir the paint for about one minute with a stir stick to make the color even. Coat the paint brush in the paint, and move the brush up and down the frame.
Rinse brushes as needed in a bucket of clear water. If you are an inexperienced painter, stir an ounce of water per gallon in the paint for smoother brush strokes, but you may need more paint layers. Let the first paint layer dry, and add a second layer, if needed.
Alternatively, contact a company that can help you install new windows for more information and assistance.