Saturday, September 15, 2012

How to paint a Door

Painting can be frustrating but once the basics are understood, it can be quite easy and rewarding.

My front door was in need of renewing.  Black doors always look nice and I decided it was the way to go.  There are a few things to consider when painting a door.

Weather exposure can determine what colors should be avoided.  Full sun, whether it is day or evening doesn't matter if it is long hours of sun.  This sun can cause bubbles in paint, glue oozing from joints or window inserts, and warping.  Dark colors will increase these problems.  Especially black!

Sheen is also something to consider when painting a front door.  Flat is a standard for exterior painting and flat or a low sheen for a front door is becoming more popular right  now.  Often times a satin door is better to improve fade resistance and wash-ability.  This door is going to be satin black.

My maroon door was faded, otherwise in good shape.  I removed the kick plate to paint and cleaned the door.
It is best to do any brush work first to limit the brush strokes. 
Painting in the panels and then around the door handles. Next use a small cat paw roller.  Always paint with the grain up the vertical grain (otherwise known as rails) and then the horizontal grain (skids).  Rolling over areas that are brushed to get a smoother finish. 

Once paint is dry an hour or so, a second coat can be put on.  A second coat will ensure a good coverage and offer longevity for the finish. 

Primer?  Exterior paints are self priming.  It gives them the ability to cover evenly on all sorts of surfaces.  The paint will look the same on wood as it does brick or cement.  This makes it much easier to paint with dark colors.  A good paint will cover in two coats without the use of primer.  Some colors will do fine with out a second coat.  

On a beautiful fall day the paint dries quickly but if the door needs to be closed the weather stripping may need to be taken off for several days.  The avoid this try putting Vaseline on the rubber weather strip, this will stop the door from sticking.

Vaseline can also be put on the hardware instead of tape.  This will allow paint to be wiped of after the door has dried.  

Now for the kick plate....

Once removed lightly sand to scuff finish and remove rust.

Prime with a spray can metal primer.

Lightly sand and paint using metal finish.

Coat with clear coat and install.

Just the right touch to finish off the front door.  Now it is much more inviting. 

Now I am just going to finish the fall decor. 




  1. I also find black appealing for the color of the front door. However, I must agree that the direct exposure to the sun will surely ruin its beauty. Anyway, I guess putting an invisible screen door against it will help lessen the damage, since the glass pane will filter the rays of the sun before going through the main door.

    Wayne Wright

  2. I like your blog a lot. Its informative and full of information. Thank you for sharing.
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  3. nice article, using great equipment to renovate a house will fasten your work, besides it will produce you with smooth result!

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