As with most DIY projects, planning and preparation are half the battle when painting doors. Dirt and oils can cause blemishes in the paint so it is important to ensure the surface of the door is clean and free from grease.

Preparing a new door for painting

It is generally easier to paint a new door than to re-paint an existing one. There is less likely to be a build-up of grease, and probably less need for sanding and filling. It is best to paint a new door before hanging it if possible, and also before fitting accessories such as door handles and latches. Preparing an existing door for re-painting

If possible it is preferable to remove a door for painting, as it is easier to get at all the edges. If you can't do this however, you can still paint the door, but you will need to be careful of dripping or running paint. It is also best to remove the handles, plates and lock if present, so that you don't get paint on them. Be sure to make a note of which handle goes on which side, to ensure that the door handle turns the same way when you put it back.

It is best to scrape off and sand down the previous paint layers rather than simply paint over the top of them, as this will give a good smooth surface for the new paint to adhere to. Painting directly over old paint layers can result in the new paint flaking off. This is also the opportunity to use filler to repair any damage or scratches in the surface of the door. Once the filler is thoroughly dry, sand it down flush with the surface.

Over time the surface of a door will pick up dirt and grease from normal day to day usage. It is important to paint on a clean surface, so it is a good idea to wash it before painting. You can use soap and water for this, but sugar soap is best, as it will remove grease and give a surface which takes paint well. Ensure the door is thoroughly dry before painting.

Painting the Door

It's important to choose the right paint for your doors. Satin, eggshell and gloss finish paints are all good choices. Of these gloss paint is likely to be the most hard wearing and durable. We advise using oil-based paints rather than water-based paints in order to reduce the risk of warping or cracking. It is a very good idea to apply a coat of primer first to ensure a good bond between the paint and the door, especially with exterior doors as this will help to protect them from moisture.

It is preferable to use a brush rather than a roller when painting doors, especially ones with panels or glazing, as you will have better control. If the door has glass panels or windows, it is a very good idea to mask the edges of the glass with masking tape to prevent any paint getting on the panes. It's worth using a good quality paintbrush as it is likely to last longer and is far less likely to shed bristles as you work.

Paint the flat sides of the door first, leaving the edges until last. It is best to work from the middle of the door outward, applying even brush strokes in the direction of the grain of the wood, working gradually closer to the edges. If you are painting the door in place, it is important to paint the side closest to the handle last, so that you can open and close the door while you are working if necessary.

If the door has panels, paint these first, followed by the areas around them. Start in the middle of a panel, and work outwards to the moulded part. However it is a good idea to work out from the corners rather than into them, in order to prevent too much paint from building up in the recessed corners.

After painting the front and back of the door, it's time to paint the edges. Take care not to overload with paint or you will get buildup on the very edges which may make the door too tight a fit.

It is always better to use two thin coats than one thick coat. Leave 24 hours between coats to ensure the paint is fully dry. Lightly sand down the first coat once it is dry to give a better surface for the second coat to adhere to. Once the second coat is dry the door can be hung in place (assuming it was not painted in position) and the handles etc. can be attached.

As an alternative to painting your doors, you may like to check out our never paint again doors.


The Doorworld - for all your door requirements!
We sell a huge range of internal doors - UPVC internal doors, Traditional large pine (tenement) internal doors, Pine Panelled doors, Pine Glazed doors, Hardwood Panelled, Hardwood Glazed doors, oak panelled,contemporary internal doors, pre-finished oak, white moulded, Spanish style doors, and white primed doors. Give us a call today to chat about doors! 0800 011 3145. The Doorworld - the door specialists.

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Margaret Olive, Salisbury - "I contacted the company to supply 15 never paint again doors and a loft hatch. From initial contact made with Richard right through to delivery I found that nothing was too much trouble. Transportation was arranged to the south of England and we are very impressed with the doors and the whole house looks brighter as a result. I would recommend this company to anyone who is looking for quality products and excellent customer service.Thank you so much!"

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Margaret Nimmo, Ayrshire - Thank you so much for your assistance when purchasing my 2 new doors. They were delivered on time and when my joiner had to cancel, one of your tradesmen stepped in and fitted them within 2 days. His workmanship is incredible. I am delighted with my 2 new beautiful doors and would highly recommend you as a supplier and Michael as a fitter. 5 star service all round!!

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"So happy with your never paint doors, really brightened the house up - thank you for everything"

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"To Richard, many thanks for the made to measure door been searching for years until I found your website. Would recommend you. Had door fitted now matches the others."

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Mr Speers,Glasgow -  "Fantastic job, great tradesmen and friendly staff"

Residents Strawhill Crt Glasgow - Never Paint Again, great doors, great service and friendly professional staff

Mr Butler - Contracted this company to supply and fit five doors on the 10/3/12. The service we received was fantastic from start to finish. Richard the director of the company was very helpful and understood exactly what we were looking for. The joiners were excellent and their attention to detail is commendable. I would highly recommend this company to anyone who is considering new doors. Great advice great service a real pleasure to deal with.

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Mr & Mrs Simpson -  Recently had 5 internal and 1external door from your company and just wanted to say how delighted we are with the doors and the service provided. The doors are lovely and the workmanship of joiners is first class.  Thanks.