Painting Your Appliances Can Impact Your Warranty—3 Things to Know Before You Start

Painting your appliance can nullify its warranty and cost you more money in repairs down the line. Here are some points to consider before grabbing the paint brush, according to experts.

Painting your appliances might seem like a budget-friendly and easy way to give your appliances a refresh (and it is)—but it can also void the warranty, and potentially damage the appliance if it's not done properly.

"If you paint an appliance, and the paint leads to physical consequences such as chipping, rust, or in some cases, disfunction, your warranty will not cover the damages," says Leonard Ang, CEO of iPropertyManagement, an online resource for tenants, landlords, and real estate investors.

Household appliances, such as your oven, stove, fridge, and dishwasher, are generally covered under your home warranty and have their own warranties as well. If anything goes wrong, the company will send someone to repair it. But if you make changes to it yourself, it could result in the nullification of its warranty. If you're planning on giving your appliances a fresh coat of paint, here are three things to consider before starting.

Read the terms of your warranty thoroughly, especially if you're planning on painting the appliance yourself.

Know what you're getting into by reading through your appliance's warranty first to see what it says about making modifications it. If you're making it a DIY project, you might want to think twice.

"This is because many paints and appliance manufacturers inform that the paint job must be done by a certified professional to keep the warranty intact," says Joel Phillips, home improvement expert and founder of home resource, Home Guide Corner. Phillips says that while some warranties may have some flexibility with this rule depending on the type of appliance or paint company, but most require a professional. Having a clear understanding of the terms of the warranty will help you make a decision on whether it's a good idea to paint your appliance, or if it will nullify the appliance warranty.

"Take a good look at your warranty and warranty laws if you're not sure about what legal coverage requires, and err on the side of caution if you're worried you might get handed a big bill for repairs that you can't afford," advises Minesh Patel, an attorney in Texas.

Paint carefully—any damage the paint causes to the appliance will not be covered under the warranty.

Painting your appliance might seem like a minor, cosmetic upgrade, but it can really damage your appliance if it's not done properly—and any repairs required because of the paint will not be covered by the appliance's warranty.

"It is important to know that electrical appliances are sensitive, and any painting mishap can cause them to stop working," says Phillips. He suggests reading user manuals for the appliance on any tips that might be included for painting, and reading the directions on the paint as well to see which surfaces it is suitable for.

"When painting, stay clear of motors, hinges, vents, keypads or touch-sensitive areas, and any other appliance parts that could be affected by the paint," says Haley Gray, expert at electronic warranty platform, Upsie. Some types of paint can cause an appliance to overheat and melt its parts.

"Under the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, limited warranties are void if you've made significant changes to the product that affect its performance," explains Patel. Even if this doesn't happen, if your appliance gets any dents or needs any repairs in the future, they won't be covered if painting your appliance automatically voids the warranty. Make sure you either leave it to a professional or thoroughly do your research on the types of paint and how to apply it in a way that won't cause damage to your appliance.

Painting your appliance can be a good upgrade if your appliance is old and the warranty is expired.

If your appliance is already old and the warranty has expired, upgrading the paint on it is not a bad idea—as long as you're sure that it won't affect its performance, and are OK footing the bill if it does. You don't want to be stuck with a newly painted appliance that doesn't function properly and have to pay out of pocket for the repairs, which would just end up costing you more money in the long run.

"If your appliance is out of the warranty period, go ahead and paint," says David Aylor, an attorney in South Carolina. "Be sure to use paint that is heat-safe for appliances that heat up significantly to avoid unintended damage." If you have any doubts, you can always call the appliance company or home warranty provider and clarify whether painting your appliance will void the warranty.

Was this page helpful?
Related Articles