Simple Solutions

Stripping Door Hardware the Natural Way with Vinegar

By: Joe Truini

To strip paint from door hardware using vinegar:

  1. Heat 1 cup of white vinegar with 1 cup of water in a pot on a stove.
  2. Pour the heated mixture into an old cake pan with the painted hardware.
  3. Let the hardware sit in the vinegar until the paint softens.
  4. Remove the hardware from the vinegar, and clean using a soft bristled brass brush.
  5. Rinse the hardware with water and dry.


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3 Comments on “Stripping Door Hardware the Natural Way with Vinegar”

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  • Official Comment:

    Ben Erickson Says:
    September 2nd, 2009 at 7:56 am

    Hi JoAnne,
    Thanks for the tips on how to strip wood.

  • JoAnne Deibert Says:
    September 1st, 2009 at 8:37 pm

    First there is the concern of your health. Using a heat gun on lead paint is a health hazard. I would suggest you start with having a lead screening before you go any further with this project. It may be necessary for you to leave the paint on the remaining doors and repaint with latex paint with low VOC’s. Dipping is not a good idea. It removes the glue and can ruin the patina of the wood. Using a good qaulity chemical paint remover will work better if there is no concern about more lead in the air. It is best to do your work outside in Sept or Oct when it is cool. Use an old coffee can for the paint remover and cut a slit in the top to put your brush through. Make sure you have lots of newspaper and protective gloves. You will also need wood alcohol to do the final cleaning after you have all of the old finish off. You never want to sand, as you will ruin the old wood. Instead use a soft wire brush in groves and steel wool on flat surfaces. Your doors will look beautiful when you are finished, with the natural wood, or a fresh coat of paint in a historic color.

  • lynette taylor Says:
    October 16th, 2008 at 7:42 pm

    we have old doors with pinkish ripple glass in them. They have been varnished then painted over the top of the varnish. using the oldest door i used a heat gun to get most of it off then itried to sand it but the sand paper just clogged up, there is still paint in the grooves that i cant get out.apart from dipping the doors is there any way i can get them back to there original state.they also have 3 panels under the glass

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Stripping Door Hardware the Natural Way with Vinegar