How to Remove Powder Coating Quickly

Posted: January 17, 2019 By: MattM

Powder coating is one of the most durable coatings there is, but it also is one of the most difficult to remove if you want to recoat it. Powder Coating is baked on and cures to an extremely hard finish that is difficult to even remove with mechanical methods. We’ve worked hard over the years to find the easiest way to remove powder coating and decided to show you the process below.

Step 1. – Gather the parts to be stripped and clean any loose dirt, grease, powder, etc. off the surface. This will allow the Down To Metal Stripper to work more effectively. Parts with multiple coats of powder you may want to scratch the surface of the powder with a wire brush or awl to help the stripper break through the surface more quickly.

Step 2.- You can begin to apply the stripper to the part. Using some disposable foam brushes you can apply the stripper to the surface. We’ve found that applying the stripper in one direction helps it work better. You want to make sure there is enough stripper applied so that it fully covers the powder surface. You may notice that as soon as you begin applying the stripper the powder may start to slightly dissolve and start to break down; continue to apply and let it sit for at least 10-15 minutes. Allow more time if the temperatures are colder outside as the chemical works better when warm.

Step 3.- Check the status of the stripper by using a plastic scraper to push on the surface. You should be able to basically push the now-soft coating off the bare metal. If the coating seems to only be penetrating the first layer of the powder you can apply a little more on top.

Step 4- Once you’re happy with how much the powder has bubbled/dissolved you can begin to scrape the old powder off. You should be able to scrape most of the powder off in one pass with a plastic scraper. We suggest doing this over a trash can if possible to minimize the mess. You can also follow up with PRE Paint Prep or Chassis Kleen to help remove stubborn pieces of powder. If there are still sections with powder adhered to the surface you can apply another round of down to metal stripper. Finally you can rinse and neutralize the surface with warm water to get a clean part. Feel free to use a scuff pad to abrade the surface for a new coating.

What you’ll be left with is a clean surface that is ready for paint, primer, or powder. Make sure that you wear gloves, long shirt and pants, a respirator, and eye protection when working with this chemical as it is very aggressive.

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