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How to Use a Rustoleum Primer

The Rust-Oleum Corporation had its beginning in a fish-oil-based paint developed by Robert Fergusson, a former sea captain. Rust-Oleum Rusty Metal Primer Spray is designed to adhere to rust and drive out moisture and corrosion, providing a surface to which top coats of paint will adhere easily. You can use it indoors or out and it comes in spray or liquid versions. Applying it takes just a little preparation.

This pipe could use some primer.

Step 1

Clean the surface of rust, grease, oil and other substances, using soap and water.  You can substitute household cleaner or trisodium phosphate (TSP) if you wish, but Rust-Oleum advises against cleaning with solvents, noting that they smear grease and grime around.


Step 2

Chip off rust and loose paint with the paint scraper, wire brush and sandpaper.  Lightly sand glossy surfaces.


Step 3

Rinse the surface with water and let it dry thoroughly. 


Step 4

Shake the spray can vigorously.  Do this for one minute after you hear the mixing ball begin rattling.

Shake frequently while applying the primer. 


Step 5

Spray steadily back and forth, holding the can 10 to 16 inches from the surface, keeping the can in motion and slightly overlapping your strokes. 


Step 6

Apply two coats a few minutes apart.  Let the primer dry thoroughly before applying a top coat.

Things You Will Need

  • Soap
  • Wire brush or steel wool
  • Paint scraper
  • Sandpaper

About the Author

Joe Steel is a Northwest-based editor, writer and novelist, former news editor of an outdoor weekly. He also was an editor at a Seattle-based political weekly and editor of a monthly business magazine. He has been published in the "Seattle Times," the "Washington Post" and the "Foreign Service Journal," among other publications.

Photo Credits

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