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How to Paint an Exterior Door

September 11, 2014 Categories: Doors Home Renovation Tips

Entry Door

In this post you will learn…

  • What kind of paint you should use when painting an exterior door.
  • How to prep your door before you paint.
  • Learn more about Stanek Windows’ entry doors and how they can customize them to fit your home.

How to Increase Curb Appeal with a Freshly Painted Front Door

Learn how to paint an exterior door. If you are looking for a fun way to refresh your home, you may be considering painting an exterior door. Your front door plays a key role in the curb appeal of your property and, with the right paint job, you can make your home even more welcoming.

Painting an exterior door is a little different than painting the internal portions of your home. External doors are exposed to weather conditions and dirt that can challenge the durability of the door itself. In order to appropriately address the demands placed upon your door, you’ll need use the proper paint so your hard work will hold up.

Choosing Your Paint

Before you can paint your door, you’ll need to determine what type of paint to use. You can play with a wide array of colors, but the heart of your decision lies between latex and oil-based paints. You can check the current paint on your door by rubbing a small area with ammonia. If the color comes off, then your door was previously painted with a latex paint.

If your door was previously painted with an oil-based paint, you can apply quality latex paint over the old coat. However, if your old surface has five or more layers of oil-based paint, it’s best to stick with a new coat of oil-based paint. You cannot apply oil paint directly atop a latex coat. In that case, you’ll need a primer coat.

Oil-based paint is preferable if you need to apply it during 50 degree or below weather, or if the surface you’re painting is chalky. Be aware that this type of paint takes longer to dry, features a strong odor, and requires more labor to clean up. However, it is very durable. Most people prefer latex paint because it is less prone to cracking, retains its color better, and is less susceptible to mildew.

Next, you’ll need to determine if you need to prime your front door. Not every door paint job requires primer, but a white primer may be helpful in the following cases: if you’re going from a dark color to a light color, the door was previously without any paint, or you’re switching from latex to oil. Otherwise, you may not need primer.

When selecting paint for exterior doors, be sure to select a paint that can stand up to both weather and dirt.

Prepping Your Door

Next you’ll need to prepare the door for painting. You have two options.

Painting an exterior door. Option 1: You can use painter’s tape and carefully cover all of the hardware. This option runs a higher risk of painting your hardware by accident.

Option 2: You can take your door down and remove all of the hardware and set the door up on two saw horses.

In either case, you will need to clean the door and lightly sand the area where you are going to paint. The sandpaper will remove imperfections as well as prepare the area to take on the new paint.

Apply Paint

When painting, you’ll want to do panels first with rollers. Next, use a brush to paint any depressed areas surrounding the panels. Finally, paint the exterior stretches of the door. When painting, you should always paint in the same direction as the wood grain and never paint against it. Going perpendicular to the grain will result in a product that looks unprofessional. Learn more about painting techniques here.

Quality Doors

replace your entry doorWhile a fresh coat of paint can spruce up an old door, sometimes the best thing to do with your home is to seek out replacement doors. When you need an exterior door replacement, you’ll want to find a quality product which you can rely on.

Finding a stylish, energy efficient, customized entry door can make all the difference in your home’s curb appeal. For those in areas prone to serious storms, a door with serious strength and quality craftsmanship is important. Stanek Windows has the door you need to weather a local storm.