Best Radiator Paint

The best radiator paint must be tough enough to withstand heat and bumps through wear and tear.

Radiators heat homes throughout the UK and are often in need of an upgrade as they have faded or homeowners are simply looking to change the colour.

The paints are available in a range of colours and gloss levels but typically radiators were supplied in white gloss finish.

Radiators can now be changed to suit the colour scheme of the room and are available in different gloss levels.

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Our Choice for No.1

In the trials of the radiator paints that we used the best product was Ronseal One Coat Radiator Paint.

Its a tough durable paint that withstands heat and is easy to apply.

Radiator Paint Comparison

Radiator PaintCoverage Rate (per L)Application Method
Ronseal One Coat Radiator Paint8m2Brush
Rust-Oleum Radiator Enamel2m2Aerosol Spray
Hammerite Radiator Paint7m2Brush
Rustins Quick Dry Radiator Enamel14m2Brush
Dark Grey Heat Resistant Paint6m2Brush

1. Ronseal One Coat Radiator Paint

We used the Ronseal Radiator paint on a old rad in living room.

The powder coated finish had begin to fade due to its location in sunlight.

Why we liked Ronseal One Coat:

  • The paint is self priming so one coat should be enough
  • It finished to a brilliant white finish and enhanced the
  • The paint brushes on very well
  • Its designed to withstand heat
  • A tough paint which resists knocks and bumps

The paint takes a while a to dry, it is best left for 16-24 hours as per the manufacturers guidelines.

The paint finished to a bright white and did a make a difference to the room.

It is a quality paint designed specifically to brighten up old radiators or as part of a painting project.

This product is also available in aerosol form.

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#2 Rust-Oleum Radiator Enamel

Another radiator specific paint, this time from the team at Rust-Oleum.

This is a spray applied product in the form of an aerosol.

The paint applied well and brightened the radiator back to its original finish.

Features of Rust-Oleum Radiator Enamel:

  • The paint is washable after it is applied and moisture resistant
  • Once fully cured the paint withstands the heat of up to 80 degrees celsius
  • Formulated to protect against yellowing
  • Extends life of radiator by protecting against rust
  • Quick-drying coating

The paint is easy to apply, and dries fast so that any further coats required can be applied same day.

The only downside to this paint was the smell, but with adequate ventilation through the house it shouldn’t be too much of a problem.

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#3 Hammerite Radiator Paint

The radiator paint supplied by Hammerite is a quality coating.

Hammerite have been designed and supplying specialist paints for metalwork for years.

If you are looking to whiten up old radiators in rooms within the home the this paint is a good choice.

The main features of Hammerite Radiator Paint are:

  • A superb bright finish
  • Extremely easy to apply
  • Adds rust proof layer to the radiator
  • Heat resistant
  • Very quick to dry

This Hammerite paint is also availlbe in the form of an aerosol applied coating.

If you are looking to create a brighter space and extend the life of a radiator then this finish is a great shout.

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#4 Rustins Quick Dry Radiator Enamel

The Rustins enamel is another good choice for freshening up old radiators.

The paint applies well and is touch dry in as little as thirty minutes.

The main features of the Rustins Quick Dry Enamel:

  • A Water-based coating that presents little odour
  • Available in gloss and satin finishes
  • Can be used on appliances as well like fridges
  • Anti yellowing formula
  • Quick-drying and heat resistant

We found that the 250ml tin was easily enough for two average sized radiators.

It did take two coats to get a decent finish.

The clean up operation was easy as the paint could be cleaned using just water, another positive.

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#5 Dark Grey Heat Resistant Paint

If you are looking to modernise a room, then look no further than this heat resistant grey paint.

Manufactured by Paints r us it is ideal if you would like to add a splash of colour to a room.

The main features of the paint are:

  • Heat resistant to 200 degrees celsius
  • Dries to a satin finish
  • A self priming paint with great adhesion
  • Fast drying
  • Extremely durable

The paint is easy to apply and the colour is very modern and popular at present.

It does need a couple coats but the tin should be more than capable of coating two standard radiators.

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Radiator Paint Buying Guide

When purchasing a coating for radiators there are a few factors that you must consider.

Heat Resistant

The paint will need to be heat resistant.

Some radiators run at 60-80 degrees celsius and the paint must be able to withstand frequent blasts of this.

Check the can or aerosol spray to ensure that the coating will perform in these conditions.


Radiators are often on show in the room and exposed.

They are also used to dry clothing in the winter months and are prone to wear and tear.

The paint going on the radiator needs to be hard wearing

Colour & Finish

Radiators have traditionally been supplied white and therefore a lot of the paints on the market are white.

Some paint manufacturers have cottoned on to the need of the consumer are beginning to supply coloured radiator paints with different sheen levels.


Some of the paints are brush applied and some are supplied in the form of an aerosol.

We suggest that for the flattest finish an aerosol spray is the best option.

Brushed paints can leave marks in the finish.


Preparation is key in ensuring that the you get the best finish.

Ensure that the radiator surface is free from previous brush marks and bumps by sanding and treating first.

Non Yellowing Formula

Radiator paints can be prone to yellowing over time.

The heat that and in some instance sunlight can break down the paint coating.

Check to see if the paint is formulated against this problem.


Radiator paints and enamels are an excellent choice for refurbishing existing radiators.

The difference a coat of a paint, especially bright white, can make to the room is spectacular.

There are also other benefits to painting the radiators such as extending the life expectancy by protecting against rust.

Have you re-coated a radiator recently? Let us know how you got on!

Related Reading

The Best Gloss Paints

How often should you paint a room?

The toughest interior wall paints

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