How to Paint Garage Doors with a step-by-step tutorial that is affordable and boost the curb appeal of your home!
If you have been following along with our remodeling of my childhood craftsman log cabin home, you know we have giving this home some love with one of my favorite makeover tools: paint! After re-staining the house exterior, painting the concrete and foundation, and laying a new walkway we set our sights on painting the garage doors to give them a more modern look that pops against the brown and white.
How To Paint Garage Doors
The particular doors were were painting are made of wood, but the tips are the same if you have metal, composite, or wood garage doors.
Step 1: Cleaning
A simple pressure washing will do well. We have done well with this pressure washer, but if you do not have a pressure washer, you can use an exterior house wash and a hose. Use a scrub brush for any grime or loose paint. Make sure to let the doors dry completely.
Do I need to Prime?
For the most part, garage doors do not need to be primed in order to be painted. Most paints today specify that they are a paint+primer combo, so that should be enough.
If you can answer “No” to all of these questions, then you can definitely skip priming.
- Have the garage doors NEVER been previously painted? (Answering “Yes” means that they have never been painted)
- Am I substantially lightening or darkening the color (i.e. going from sky blue to white)?
- Is the door I am painting smooth and shiny? (paint probably won’t stick to it well)
- Does it have stains that are likely to seep through the paint?
The lightening of a color, especially to white, often takes a few coats. I ask about the lightening because it may be in your best interest to buy a quart or gallon of primer, which is generally much cheaper than paint.
10 Tips for Painting Garage Door:
- Do not paint garage doors in direct sunlight or if the door is hot to the touch.
- Don’t paint if the humidity is above 70% generally or the temperature is below 40 degrees F – these values vary and are usually listed on the paint can.
- A small, thin roller make it easier and faster to paint the flat panels of the garage door. We used a brush to paint the crevices.
- We used a satin or semi-gloss finish. Satin or semi-gloss is generally easier to maintain and wash than a flat. We used a satin as a happy medium so that it would not reflect too much shine.
- It took 2 gallons for us to cover both sides of these two doors with two coats of paint.
- I recommend using a high quality exterior paint that is weather and fade resistant. This isn’t a time to skimp on paints because garage doors take a beating and often times can flex in the weather.
- Tape everything off that you don’t want to get paint on.
- To get into the areas covered by the outside frame, we gradually lifted the door and painted in the open corners. We let it dry with the door fully open (to also avoid the sunlight).
- If you choose, you can also paint the areas between the panels (the part you only see as you raise the door). This can be done in the same method as painting the areas covered by the outer frame.
- If you like the decorative window look with garage doors, these carriage style door kits are a really fun and super easy addition.
It’s a big difference! What do you think? I love the pop against the rest of the brown and white exterior. I think it gives the door a touch of class amid the rustic charm.
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