Why I Painted My Brand New Dishwasher

by Diane Henkler on 05/23/2013

After having to wash my dishes by hand after my dishwasher decided to stop working about 3 weeks ago, I am happy to report – those hand washing days are OVER!  It wasn’t too bad at first, but it did start to get old around week #2.  I noticed I wasn’t so quick to wash the dishes right after I used them, instead they started piling up in the sink.  :)

Kitchen-Before-and-After

If you read my post about my love/hate relationship with appliances then you may remember that I could only choose certain models of dishwashers that would fit under the height of my cabinets.   Turns out I only had 3 to choose from – a Bosch and a GE were the only ones I liked of the 3.  I went with the GE since it looked the best with my GE oven.

I did find out something interesting about my cabinets from the very helpful appliance salesman at the local appliance store.  He told me my cabinets are ADA compliant.  Which is the reason they are shorter.

He went on to explain why builders use them.  My house is a “builders spec house”   Usually these houses are built to fill one last lot using a house plan that the builder thinks people will buy.  They might include a few upgrades along with basic stuff, only a few things left for the buyers to customize.  To keep things simple, builders sometimes put in ADA compliant features where they can, so that if the buyer happens to need these, they don’t have to rip anything out.   Hence the reason my cabinets are shorter, or if you knew the builder of my house – he got a money saving deal on them and that is the reason he used them.

I never put 2 + 2 together even after the first fiasco years ago when I bought a Kitchen Aid and the installer told me when he came that I would have to pick a Maytag as that was the only model at the time that would work.   Light bulb moment… makes total sense to me now!  It also explains the reason we had to remove the feet from the oven when it was installed so that it would be close to flush with the counter top.

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We like the new dishwasher – much quieter, but I did not like the fact that you could see the black base. All models seem to have this.  I knew I would be whipping out some paint to fix it to my liking. The white dishwasher that this stainless one replaced, had a black base also that I painted, as did the base on all the cabinets when we first moved into the house.  I painted that base after the first few weeks of moving in.  I am not a fan of black cabinet bases.

It is not that I don’t like black, I actually like black and think every room could use a little bit of it to create balance and interest, but your eye goes right to the floor when the cabinet base is black on light color cabinets. I like to create visual flow, so out came the Antique White paint.

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I put down painters tape, roughed up the surface with medium grit sandpaper, which I found out was plastic – not metal!  I cleaned it well and let it dry. I then rolled on a light coat of Gripper primer.  It was hot and humid here yesterday so it took a long time to dry.  I then rolled on a coat of paint.

The floor is going to be refinished very soon – my summer project.   I may have to repaint the entire baseboard around the cabinets, but that is OK.  For now I am happy that the black is gone.

Painting

When I redo the floor, I plan to add “feet” in front of the dishwasher like I did on the end of each section of cabinet. (photo below)

Painted Kitchen Cabinet tutorial

When you own a house and like it to look “just right” for your style  – there is always a project that needs doing.  Now having two stainless appliances in the room, I want to replace the brass faucet and drawer pulls  – will be doing that soon.

My summer is going to be filled with lots of projects – floor work and painting mostly. I am most excited about my plans for the floor in my mudroom. Will be starting on that soon now that the dishwasher project is behind me.

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{ 21 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Denise May 23, 2013 at 11:36 am

Diane,
Kitchen looks great and what a clever idea to paint the base! You might want to hold off on changing out your brass – today’s Boston Globe (my local paper) had a squib about brass making a huge comeback! You could be cutting edge without even knowing it lol.

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2 Diane Henkler May 23, 2013 at 12:18 pm

Hi Denise – The new “IN” seems to have updated styling – there is a more modern feel to it. I am a fan of it, but my faucet leaks and needs replacing, so I would like to get a new one. I may keep the pulls – I will do the floor first and see how it all looks.

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3 Adrienne May 23, 2013 at 12:39 pm

That makes a huge difference! I love it!

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4 Ruth May 23, 2013 at 1:36 pm

Love it! I’ve been a silent follower/lurker for years, you are such a talented person.
I’ve been searching for a rug (in front of your sink) similiar to yours and would much appreciate if you would tell me where you bought/ordered it.

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5 Diane Henkler May 23, 2013 at 1:43 pm

Hi Ruth – I found it at HomeGoods about 2 months ago. Could not walk away from the $14.99 price. It is sisal with an overall design printed on it in green.

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6 Gail@Purple Hues and Me May 23, 2013 at 5:02 pm

Looks good, Diane! And it does seem to make a difference in your kitchen. Now I have to go look at the bottom of my appliances. I love the stenciling on your floors! How unique! Will you keep it when you refinish your floor?

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7 Diane Henkler May 23, 2013 at 5:27 pm

Hi Gail – I won’t be keeping the stencil on the floors. I did it such a long time ago – over 15 years ago. Time for a change :)

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8 Marie in Va May 23, 2013 at 11:35 pm

What a great idea! I would’ve never thought to do that, but what a difference it makes :)

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9 Nancy May 24, 2013 at 10:36 am

If you decide to change out the brass pulls, why not consider painting them? It would be a huge savings, and you could choose any finish you like! I did a custom paint treatment on ours and they’ve held up beautifully!
Nancy

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10 Diane Henkler May 24, 2013 at 11:18 am

Hi Nancy – I will probably end up doing that, I have had a Rustoleum color chart that shows all their metal finishes, but I can’t decide if I like one color over the other. I think I am going to go with glass or a mix of glass knobs and metal pulls. I know oil-rubbed bronze and black are popular, but I don’t want dark hardware. What paint and color did you use to paint yours?

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11 Angie S May 24, 2013 at 11:24 am

What an amazing difference just that little bit of painting made! It looks great! I am of the opinion that dishwashers are one THE best inventions. Ever.

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12 charisse andrews at WHG May 24, 2013 at 2:03 pm

Hi Diane, So happy to hear that your dishwasher problem is solved and it does looks nice. As far as your brass hardware, instead of replacing it, since they are very nice, why not use a metallic spray in stainless or brushed stainless? A can or two of spray paint is inexpensive enough that it might be worth a try before replacing all hardware. They have many metal finishes available now, even a hammered one. Good luck!

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13 Sheryll & Critters. May 24, 2013 at 2:42 pm

Oh you & me both on the black bottoms on kitchen stuff. I can not believe no one else does this!!! I did it way back when I painted the entire inside and outside of my parent’s (only mom left at the time) and everyone was what did you do and how did you do it…… with me it was good old ORIGINAL Kilz. I love that stuff. It works on plastic, fake wood cabinets, real wood, what else? I too then did the white paint over it all. And I learned a valuable lesson in that kitchen…. well several actually. One is to NOT use semi gloss on the walls!!!!! Only on the cabinets. I hated the walls, but seriously… I was just done with it by then. lol It was a lot of work all by myself.

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14 Susie@homemaker-mom.com May 24, 2013 at 7:15 pm

I really like that much better wow nice difference!

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15 Linda A. Young May 24, 2013 at 11:02 pm

Yes, that little detail , painting the base makes a big difference! Looks great! I wish I had a dishwasher. Your kitchen is lovely! Have a great holiday weekend! Linda

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16 Leena Lanteigne May 25, 2013 at 2:06 am

Hi Diane! You know, I never thought about the black bottoms on my cabinets before! I repainted the cabinets white several years ago, but now that you mention it, I think I neede to comebck and paint that bottom black strip as well! Great piece of advice!
Sorry I missed you at Lucketts on Sunday! I saw you at the Hometalk tent but by the time I got over there, you’d left. Hope to meet up with you another time! Take care, Hugs, Leena

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17 Lynne May 26, 2013 at 8:44 am

I think you should come and live at our house. You accomplish more than anyone and with style and some moxy too. Who would know there would be someone who notices black base needs some white! Looks so much better!

I am thinking of doing a kitchen, dining room ( right next to it) makeover and don’t even know where to begin . . . (I haven’t told my hubby yet!)

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18 Sherry Drake May 29, 2013 at 2:29 pm

I love so many of your ideas but one of your projects stands out to me the most, the “feet” on the end of your cabinets. I would love to know how to do that and can’t wait to see how you do the dishwasher.

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19 Diane Henkler May 29, 2013 at 8:29 pm

HI Sherry – In the post I did on my kitchen makeover, I do show the shelf brackets I used to make the feet. It is an old photo. I did the makeover a long time ago way before I started blogging. If I had done it in the last 3 years I would have had it better documented. When I redo my floor, I will show how to add the shelf bracket feet. You can find the kitchen post here – DIY Kitchen Makeover

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20 Joanie June 6, 2013 at 8:23 pm

Diane,
Just wanted to let you know of another option for under the dishwasher. I used a piece of matching baseboard trim cut to the size of the dishwasher kick-plate. I painted it the same color as the baseboard under the cabinet, then used those crazy 3M Velcro-type things (the ones used for hanging pictures) to keep the new piece in place. It looks like it “belongs” to the dishwasher.

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21 Diane Henkler June 10, 2013 at 5:40 pm

Hi Joanie – Thanks for sharing your idea – brilliant! Love that you used the Command Strips :) My kind of DIY!

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