Trying to refinish an old vanity and am having difficulty with the stripping. any suggestions?

  15 answers
  • Can you tell us what you have already done and what the difficulty is that your having? Many of the newer products available to do this work are pretty easy and straight forward on use. Are there several layers of paint on it? Is it stained and you want to remove the stain? Once we have this information we can give you all sorts of helpful hints to make the job go easier for you!
  • Sandi Sandi on Dec 22, 2011
    I can see the wood now, but it has a thin layer I can't seem to get off. It was about two layers of white paint and the bottom layers seems to be two layers of light blue. it is the light blue I am having issues with. I first used Smart Strip , white paste; then i went to Home Depot and got the regular stripping. The paint is hard and not scrapping off easily. Places where the i can see the wood, the residue paint will not come off using the steel wool and paint thinner as advised by Home Depot sales person.
  • I would then assume your not waiting long enough for the chemical to do its job. The steel wool and thinner is just to help clean off any left over paint remover that has dried. It will do nothing to remove the left over paint if it has not yet been softened by the paint remover. What your doing is hard work. Quite often then not people get frustrated towards the end of the project with exactly the same issues your having. Take your time. Put on some more paint remover, I personally like Red Devil, but brand is not important at this time. Let it sit for several hours. Even over night. You can place plastic film over it to keep it from evaporating away. Then try again to remove it. Using a soft metal brush helps. Of course where your gloves and eye protection when ever you use this stuff as the burns can blind you and eat skin quite fast.
  • Sandi Sandi on Dec 30, 2011
    I am still working on this vanity; I did however purchased a small sander and it did a great job. I will follow your advice on the other sections in which the sander was unable to reach due to obstruction. Thanks.
  • Donna McCrummen Donna McCrummen on Dec 30, 2011
    Use CitriStrip it is available at Home Depot. Get a chip brush apply it liberally - brush it on thick then dab it so it stands up a bit. It's actually the bubbles that activate the chemical - Someone on here (can't remember who) gave me that advice and it works! Good luck. Oh, the stripper smells citrisy but use a mask anyway it will give you a headache.
  • Sandi Sandi on Jan 04, 2012
    Thanks Donna!!!
  • Donna McCrummen Donna McCrummen on Jan 05, 2012
    Let us know how it turns out.
  • The After Market The After Market on Jan 07, 2012
    If you use Annie Sloan Chalk Paint...well, you'd be done by now and it would look like a hardened professional did it!
  • Sandi Sandi on Jan 09, 2012
    What is Annie Sloan Chalk Paint? Is this a brand name for a stain?
  • Donna McCrummen Donna McCrummen on Jan 09, 2012
    Google it Sandi. You will get so much info. I just started using it. I was using home made chalk paint. This is better but if you don't want to spend the dough let me know and I will send you my recipe.
  • Anyone who is trying to do what your doing in place at home has a very high failure rate because you are basically trying to something that is so nasty and stinky, not to mention hard work, you could compare it to rebuilding a car transmission on your kitchen table.
  • Donna McCrummen Donna McCrummen on Jan 15, 2012
    I'm sorry Handyman Services I totally disagree. It is stinky to strip but a very simple DIY project. I applaude you Sandi for jumping right in. Don't worry about failing, no fails who tries. If you don't like it start over. Now that you know about chalk paint - next time you won't have to strip.
  • SawHorse Design Build SawHorse Design Build on Jan 24, 2012
    Stripping wood and refinishing is a lot of work, but can be rewarding as well. They key is to not rush the process and make sure you don't skip any steps or the final products will not turn out the way you expected.
  • Donna McCrummen Donna McCrummen on Jan 25, 2012
    I agree with Sawhorse. Very rewarding - and tons of work. For me, worth every minute. I admit though when I paint I don't strip. AS chalk paint says no prep but I realized I'd rather lightly sand and prime than use tons of very expensive paint. Just saying.
  • B Bridgett B Bridgett on Jan 03, 2016
    There are numerous paint stripping companies that sell at hardware stores and home Depot ... Zip Strip is one but not all places sell it and most have no odor. Handyman there is just buffing up his business.. Stripping paint is easy and actually fun!! Go for it!!!