Pros & Cons of Liquid Stainless Steel

Are you thinking about upgrading your old appliances to stainless steel? If so, I bet you’ve been keeping an eye on all of the sale ads waiting for a steal-of-a-deal on a stainless steel appliance. Why? Because stainless steel ain’t cheap.

refrigerator-before-liquid-stainless-steel.jpg refrigerator-after-liquid-stainless-steel.jpg

If your current appliances work great and all you really want is an updated look, you can still have a stainless steel appliance at a mere fraction of what you would have paid for a brand new unit.

There is a slight twist to it. You won’t really have a stainless steel appliance but you’ll have one that has been painted to look like one, albeit, with a product that is high tech and has real stainless steel particles mixed right into the formula.

Have you ever heard of liquid stainless steel? You read that right. There’s a product on the market called Thomas’ Liquid Stainless Steel. This is one curious looking product. What an awesome idea, though!

It’s garnered quite a bit of press recently like DIY Network’s “Cool Tools”, Jason Cameron of DIY’s “Man Cave” demonstrated a before & after on The Today Show.


Of course, this is another idea that has ended up in my “full to the brim” job jar. That’s alright, though. It keeps me out of trouble, I suppose.

I was curious about the possibilities that liquid stainless steel offers so I looked into it. Here’s what I found out:

Pros and Cons of Liquid Stainless Steel


  • The cost savings is significant. $50 to paint your old (working) refrigerator or other major appliance  vs. a couple grand $$, or more, for a new stainless steel model.
  • Liquid stainless steel doesn’t show fingerprints.
  • Lasts as long as your appliance holds up. If you get a nick or a scratch, no problemo. Just lightly sand the affected area, paint it with the liquid stainless steel and put a little top coat on it… done!
  • The manufacturing process and materials doesn’t block your refrigerator’s magnetic qualities so it will still hold a magnet. There’s actual 100% stainless steel particles in the paint.
  • Appliances are the obvious areas that most people will use liquid stainless steel. Use your imagination and use it for toasters, bar stools, back splash, light fixtures, wood cabinets, trash cans, faucets… you get the idea. The possibilities are virtually endless.
  • Water-based so clean-up is easy.
  • The fridge can even be painted with the food still inside.
  • The clear resin system is automotive grade so it’s durable and tough.



  • The main disadvantage is that it takes two weeks to completely hard cure, but you can gently use your appliances after 48 hours.No aggressive cleaning during the two week cure period.
  • Not the real deal but it’s the next best thing.
  • Not to be applied where food will be prepared such as grills or counter tops. Is that a con? Not unless you had planned on painting your counter top to look like a kitchen in a restaurant.


I may update the pros & cons list in the near future, depending on how my little project goes.
Update: We painted our fridge with the stainless steel paint. See how we did it and get some great tips on how to DIY.

If you’d like to tackle this project on your own, here’s a video showing how to apply the product.

And here’s a different video telling a little more about it:


Just think… you could update your 3 major kitchen appliances for $150. On down the road, if you ever grew tired of the stainless steel look, I suppose you could paint them once again with a hi-gloss black… if your appliance hasn’t died by then.


More questions on your mind?

Liquid Stainless Steel FAQ

You may also like to read:

Paint your laminate countertop to look like granite

photos courtesy of Thomas’ Liquid Stainless Steel

Randy Boerstler

Randy Boerstler

Writing a home building blog that chronicles new homes during different phases of construction from a consumers' point-of-view is rather unique and loads of fun. Basically, my tips are a collection of checklists for what I think should (and should not) go into building a quality home. So let's have fun seeing what's new in the housing market these days!

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  • Judy DiBernardo

    I used the Thomas Stainless paint for my frig. I have some streaks on the front door. Is there anyway I can fix before putting on top coat? Can I sand? I need help right away. Thanks.

    • Randy

      Wow Judy! Not sure what you can do at this point besides sand and repaint. If I were you, I would contact Thomas paint for advice. They might even have some advice on their website. Hope your project turns out okay. Good luck!