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How to Strip, Clean and Repaint Your Equipment

Posted by Kimball Midwest on March 28, 2019

Tags: Maintenance, How To, Preparation, Repair, Paint, Restoration

An unfortunate byproduct of hard work is the high probability of damaging equipment. But on the bright side, properly repairing that equipment can make it as good as new and save you from emptying the piggy bank to purchase replacements.

And for virtually all equipment, paint is the first line of defense against the visible wear and tear caused by environmental factors, which makes it a top priority when it comes to making the repairs that could save you tens of thousands of dollars at a time.

That’s why understanding the best tools and techniques for stripping, cleaning and repainting your equipment is a vital part of a successful business.

So, let’s talk about how to properly restore a piece of equipment after repair while keeping costs low and quality high.

1. Stripping Equipment

Whether it’s a consequence of the initial damage to the equipment or the repair procedure, the original paint will most likely be compromised.

So, the first step to restoring equipment will be to strip the original paint away before cleaning the area and applying a new, protective coat of paint. We have several options to complete this part of the project, but all start with wearing the following protective gear:
The goal at this stage is to cover any skin that could come into contact with any chemical paint strippers or cleaner you may choose to use, and to allow for safe breathing at all times.

Chemical paint strippers

A chemical paint stripper is effective for removing dirt, grease and oil in addition to several types of paint finishes.

Any quality chemical paint stripper, such as Paint K.O., will cause the old paint to bubble up, allowing easy removal by chipping the paint and corrosion away from the equipment’s surface using a paint scraper, wire brush or a pressure washer.

Once all old paint is removed from the area, it’s time to clean the surface before eventually adding the new protective layer of paint.

2. Clean the Surface

Properly clean the surfaces with a rag dampened with mineral spirits or Acry-Maxx Solvent. Thoroughly wipe away any leftover paint flakes, chemical residue and dust.

Make sure all corrosion and rust have been removed before moving on. If any corrosion or rust is visible, you can always repeat the first step until satisfied.

Remember any leftover debris from the stripping process can compromise the new paint you’ll be adding to the equipment, thereby blocking its full protective potential.

Now, go one step further by applying a final cleaning with Acry-Maxx before using a dry rag to wipe the equipment down once again. Then run a scuffing pad along the surface, which will encourage better adhesion from your self-etching primer.

At this point, the surface of the equipment you’ll be painting needs to be clean and dry.

3. Repaint

Once you have a clean, rust-free surface, it’s finally time to repaint! Let’s look at the best way to provide maximum protection for your equipment and keep it at peak performance once it’s back in operation.


It all starts with primer, which has the main purpose of covering surface imperfections, preventing oxidation that leads to rust, reducing topcoat reapplications to save costs and protecting the underlying metal.

That’s why you should first reach for the Ultra Pro-Max Self-Etching Primer, which chemically bonds to metal for maximum protection and provides superior adhesion to all types of metal, aluminum and other prepared surfaces. If you have stubborn, hard-to-remove rust persisting on your surface, you can use Rust Master Plus rust-converting primer instead of Ultra Pro-Max to ensure a proper primer coating.

Top Coat

Now it’s time to add that sharp top coat of paint to your equipment that will supply additional protection against harsh conditions.

Applying any color of Ultra Pro-Max Paint is a perfect choice. In addition to a high level of paint solids in every can that can equate to two, three or even four cans of your typical paint, Ultra Pro-Max Paint has withstood severe testing, including superior performance in salt-spray testing using ASTM Test Method B-117.

Whether you’re looking for a gloss black, OSHA yellow or any of dozens of other colors, any Ultra Pro-Max Paint provides great savings and maximum protection.

Additional Protective Coatings

Effectively applied to bare metal, painted metal, plastics and more, a rubberized undercoat is a strong option for protecting a surface against corrosion.

And when it comes to the equipment that will surely take a beating, a Rubber Max Premium Undercoat provides everything you need:
  • Protection against corrosion and rust
  • Resistance to chemicals and solvents
  • Shields against cracking or flaking that can occur due to vibrations, weathering and abrasions
With zero asphalt filler, this 100 percent rubber undercoat adds a layer of extreme protection.

If you’re looking to secure total protection for your repaint job, Dark Shield is the way to go.

When you add Dark Shield to your repainted equipment, you’re adding a thick, black, protective layer that’s able to withstand heavy impacts and abrasions, but will also flex with the material it’s applied to.

This extreme-duty coating also provides traction and grip that’s desirable in most situations while repelling moisture and giving further protection from rust and corrosion. It’s also a great touch-up for pre-existing bedliner coatings.

After applying Dark Shield to your painted metal and giving it 24 hours to cure, you now have a fully repaired and restored piece of equipment ready to defend against the harsh conditions that accompany hard work.

If you’re ready to get your hands on the perfect collection of paint for your equipment Find A Rep!
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