It’s another tutorial friends…because I learned something new (and super easy) and feel like I should save another poor soul any wasted, unnecessary effort. We saved all the original main floor doors – because they are completely amazing! Both the doors and all the hardware had at least 87 coats of paint on them. At least! Trent is my metal expert (because of his job) and he looked at them and told me “good luck” getting the paint off. Naturally, I did the obvious thing and went straight to Pinterest. There were hundreds of suggestions on how to do this. I read many of them and decided to pull a few of their ideas and mix it with what I had on hand. After just a couple of attempts, I found the fail proof system! Please pin this on Pinterest to possibly save someone else.

This is what our 6″ hinges looked like initially. Ick.

I purchased a small container of Tide (buy a scent you like…because you are going to be smelling this for the next few days). I grabbed an old, inexpensive crockpot. You will never use this crockpot again for actual food – so be prepared. Once I realized this was going to work, I went to Walmart and purchased another crockpot for $20 to speed up my process. 

I filled the crockpot with enough water to cover all the hinges I placed in there. I did place them on top of each other, but made sure the water could cover them entirely. Then I poured in 1 cup of Tide and turned the crockpot to low and placed the lid on tightly.

This next step is the most important part: walk away for 24 hours. No cheating! When you return, the water will be a disgusting brown and you won’t even be able to see your hinges…this is good. Use some old tongs (or new ones that you picked up at TJ Maxx…like me) to remove the hinges one at a time. They will be HOT – use caution. Place them in a metal container to cool for 3-5 minutes.

Even as you remove them from the crockpot, the paint will be falling off.

After a couple minutes, carefully pick one up (I used gloves because they were still fairly warm) and use any tool you have to scrape off the paint. It will require NO effort. I found that the paint came off extremely easy while they were still a little warm. Once they completely cooled, it took a little more elbow grease (but still not much).

Since our hinges are 150 years old, I knew it was lead based paint. If this is the case, you may want to wear a mask (I didn’t because I had the garage doors open…but to each their own). You will definitely want to contain the scraps so that it doesn’t end up all over everything.

This is what my little work center looked like.

I piled the scraped hinges into a container. While I was able to scrape off all the paint, they still felt rough.

So, I grabbed some steel wool and just did a quick 30 second rub on each hinge. This immediately removed the roughness and left them feeling brand new! I recommend wearing gloves and a mask during this part simply because the dust is very fine. I did not wear a mask and regretted it as I coughed all night long.

And there you have it! Honestly, one of the easiest tasks I have done on this house…even Trent was impressed with how well they turned out. And he was giving me some strange looks when he saw my crockpot/Tide concoction. Hopefully, this tutorial helps you! Please pin it on Pinterest so we can share the knowledge and experience.




  • November 17, 2017 Reply

    Janet Chutro

    Nicole Curtis from Rehab Addict showed the same process a couple years ago on her show. She picks up crock pots at garage/yard sales.

  • November 17, 2017 Reply

    Michael Lannoo

    Was there water added to the Tide to make sure all hinges were covered?

  • November 17, 2017 Reply


    I have seen this method and wondered if it worked so good to know it really does! Sure would make the process easier. I will be sure to pin this on Pinterest 🙂 Love the house and the work you have done, its beautiful!!

Leave a Comment

Error: Please check your entries!