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Re-Purpose Old Vent Covers in Your Home! How Much Money Can You Save?

Updated on August 16, 2018
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Rebecca loves sharing what she knows about alternative medicine, health, frugal living, fun, animals, and how to live a better life!

Old vent cover

Ewww!  But you don't need to replace it!
Ewww! But you don't need to replace it!

Why spend money replacing when you don't have to?

When I bought my second home, it was a rehab project. We got a crazy deal but wanted to save money as much as possible, who doesn't? I don't know anyone that is excited to spend hard earned money on stupid things. This article covers how to easily re-purpose old vent covers in your home. We even redid the green 1970s laundry chute door, added a new $3 knob and it looks brand new. All you need is a little time, and some Rustoleum Specialty Appliance Epoxy paint. Since you have the option of various colors, there are endless metal surfaces you can renew. We even did our old mailbox in black and we love how it turned out!

You can also easily touch up the vents over time if they chip or wear out, but we have not had that issue in over a year.

What you'll need

  • Screw drivers (flat or phillips) depending on what needs removed
  • A wire brush, or a grill brush
  • Dawn soap, or TSP for cleaning
  • Rustoleum specialty appliance paint (almond, white, black, or stainless steel-your choice!) The paint runs about $5 a can, and I did 6 covers with 1.5 cans
  • A surface to work on that you don't mind getting overspray on. Outside or in a well-ventilated room will work.
  • A mask if you are sensitive to spray paint fumes.

New vent cover

Looking brand new!
Looking brand new!


  • Remove the vent or vents that will be painted
  • Don't forget to paint the screws if they are visible when the vent is reinstalled
  • Use the wire brush (Dawn soap or TSP) to scrub the vents as clean as possible
  • Let the vents dry completely before painting! Very important!
  • Set up your workspace
  • Spray the vents as directed on the spray paint
  • Allow ample drying time and apply a second coat
  • Once dry, reattach to the wall

New laundry door

This use to be an ugly greenish brown, now it's fresh and new
This use to be an ugly greenish brown, now it's fresh and new

Another new vent cover

Enjoy your new covers!

Now all you have to do is sit back and enjoy the extra money that has remained in your household!

© 2013 Rebecca


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