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Tips for Painting Your Front Door

Posted on Aug 11th 2022


Tips for Painting Your Front Door

The color of your front door is significant. It sets the tone for your home's outside appearance; different colors can send different messages to the people who come to your front door. Do you want it to be elegant and welcoming? Friendly and cheerful? Will it match your Christmas wreath or other decorations you use throughout the year?

Then, of course, there's the prep work and actual painting. What kind of paint do you use? Should you paint both sides of the door? Do you have to use a primer first? Can you leave the door on its hinges?

We've created a guide full of useful tips to help you with painting your door, from choosing the right color to all the work involved. At Painter1, we're happy to help with all your painting needs, big and small.

Choosing Your Paint

Painting your front door is a simple way to freshen up the look of your home. The first step before picking a color is checking if there are HOA restrictions on color options. Your HOA may have leftover paint available that you can use from past homeowner projects or provide you with the specific names of approved colors before you start.

Once you know the parameters, you can start looking at color options. Consider the style of your home, your surrounding, and your personal preferences. Once you've narrowed it down to a few colors, test them on your door to observe how they look in different light throughout the day. Don't forget about your screen or storm door, if you have one, and about door trim. You can try mixing and matching colors and playing with accents to make your door pop.

Make sure the paint you select is designed for exterior surfaces instead of interior ones. Exterior paints are sturdier against weather changes and are resistant to mold. Latex–based options are particularly popular because they resist chipping and cracking and are also good at hiding any imperfections on the door's surface. Semi–gloss finishes are popular because they're easy to clean. Oil–based paints have increased in popularity thanks to their rich color and high–gloss finish, adding amazing character to any home. Oil–based paints are also incredibly durable and dry quickly.

Choosing your paint color and type can be difficult - let Painter1 help!

Prep and Prime

First, check the weather. You want to paint on a dry, clear day so your door has time to dry and doesn't get ruined by heavy winds or rain.

You can paint the door while it's still on its hinges or remove it altogether. If you don't have a storm door, tape a tarp over the front door to help keep bugs out. Remove as much hardware from your door as possible, and put a tarp on your floor if you paint inside. Then, you'll want to clean your door free of dirt, dust, and grime by giving it a good scrub with soap and water. If you have a wooden door, you'll need to use sandpaper or a sander to help with any imperfections on the door. Start with a 120 grit piece of paper, then work your way to a 220 grit. If needed, you can go up to 320. Be sure to vacuum up or wipe away the dust left behind from sanding before you prime.

Priming a door is especially important if it is outdoors - to choose the right primer, Painter1 in Austin is always willing to help.

You'll want to apply primer to the surface of your door unless you select a paint that has primer already mixed in. Make sure the primer you select is appropriate for your chosen paint. Oil–based primer doesn't work well with latex–based paint, and vice versa. Use a foam roller to cover the entire surface with primer and a brush for more detailed work. Wait for the primer to dry completely before you go in with color.

Paint and Replace

Finally, you're ready to paint! As with the primer, use a foam roller to cover most of your door and a brush for the details. If you'd like a hand–painted look to your door, consider painting the last coat with a brush to save time. Plan on doing at least two coats. If you're painting both sides of the door, you'll need to wait for a side to dry completely before you work on the opposite surface. We recommend painting from the top down, working horizontally to prevent a mess.

Once the paint is no longer tacky, you can replace any of the removed hardware or use new hardware you bought to complement your new door color. Reattach the door to the frame if you removed it. Congratulations on your freshly painted door!

If painting your door made you realize the rest of your home could use some freshening up, it's time to consult the experts. Painter1 is proud to be a cost-effective option for any painting job you require. Whether you're looking to re–imagine the entire exterior of your home, update your kitchen, or create a different energy in your bedroom, you can count on Painter1 to help transform your home into a space that's uniquely yours!

This gray front door complements the white house and greenery - for color suggestions, contact Painter1 in Austin.