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How To Paint a Door

Painting a door may seem simple, but little mistakes stand out and promise to annoy you for a long time! Here’s how to paint a door like a professional:

  1. Gather your tools.
  2. Prepare your door (remove the door and sand it down).
  3. Prime.
  4. Get painting!

How to paint a door: gather your tools

A bad workman (or woman) blames their tools and while having the right kit doesn’t make for a perfect paint job, it definitely helps. You will need: screw driver; sandpaper; small paint roller; paint tray; 2 ½ inch paint brush; stirrer; dust sheets.

How to paint a door: prepare your door

Tempting as it may seem to paint your door in situ, it is easiest if you remove the door and lay it out flat to avoid dripping and get even coverage. If you do decide to remove the door, unscrew it from its hinges and lay it carefully on the dust sheet; if you are going to paint your door in situ, place a dust sheet on the floor. Remove the handles, hinges, and any coat hooks etc.

Lightly sand your door. Don’t go mad, your two aims are to get rid of any obvious existing bumps and drip marks and to make the existing paint rough, so the new paint or primer will adhere to it more easily.

How to paint a door: prime your door

If you are painting onto wood or stained wood, or you are painting over a dark colour, it is wise to use primer. Give your door a quick once-over with your primer, being careful to avoid drips.

How to paint a door: get painting!

Once your door is prepped, primed and ready to go, you can start painting. Stir your paint well with the stirrer and pour a small amount into your paint tray. Use your roller to paint the panels first. Use your brush to fill in any gaps, and, going with the grain of the wood, use your brush to smooth over orange-peel roller marks. (FYI: never brush against the grain!).

Once the outside panels have been painted, use your roller to paint the inner panels, using your brush to smooth over and fill in. Once the main parts of the door have been painted, turn your attention to the indented parts. You will need to use your brush here, being careful to go with the grain and fill in even the tiniest gap. To get paint into the corner, you may need to stipple using the end of your brush, but brush over again (with the grain, of course) once the surface is covered.

If you have removed the door from its hinges, wait for the first side to dry before flipping over and repeating, then use your roller to paint the edges of the door. If you are painting your door already hung, you can paint the edge and the other side; be careful to paint around hinges as they will seize if painted over, and it doesn’t look great either!

Wait until you think the paint has dried, then wait another hour before hanging your newly painted door. Sit back, admire your handiwork, and clean your equipment for next time!

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