Simple Tips and Techniques for Painting a Door

by Karianne WoodJanuary 27, 2017

One of the easiest and cost-effective ways to update your front entry is to paint your front door. For the cost of a can of paint and a brush, you can add a little curb appeal to your home in an afternoon. Many times, however, homeowners put off painting a door because they aren’t sure of the exact steps to create a professional paint finish.

Here are a few tips and techniques to help with the process.

Clean and prep the door

This step can make all the difference in the paint finish. Start the painting process with a thorough cleaning. Make sure to remove dust, debris, and cobwebs from the door and door surround. Let the door dry completely before painting. You may need to lightly sand any rough spots on the existing door as well.


Start with a good quality painter’s tape. Carefully apply the tape around door handles, the edge of the door, as well as the hinges.
Make sure to score (press firmly with a flat edge like a card) the tape to ensure that paint won’t seep through the edges of the tape. Check to make sure that you’ve taped off anything you don’t want to paint and then start prepping for painting.


Start the painting process with a brush. You’ll want to choose a smaller brush with a slight angle. This will allow you to get paint into all the corners and nooks of the door moldings. Choose an exterior, high-quality paint for the project. Semi-gloss is a good finish for a door and provides a slight sheen to the finish.
Using the slanted brush, paint the edges of the molding panels on the door. Add paint to the corners of the panels with the tip of your brush. In addition, paint around the door handles, as well as any windows in the door.


The roller for door projects like this often comes in a kit that can be purchased at any hardware store. The kit includes several rollers, a roller handle, and a small tray. You want to select a smaller roller like this one and choose a kit with foam rollers. The foam roller creates a smoother finish on the surface of the door.
Using the roller, roll the paint onto the flat surfaces of the door, blending it in with the brush strokes around the panels and door handle. At first, the door may have a mottled appearance on the surface (as shown), but the exterior paint will level out to create a smoother finish.

Continue painting until you have covered all the surfaces of the door with paint. Let dry completely and then add a second coat.
Here’s the finished door. It took about a half a can of paint and an afternoon to finish. It really is simple project to paint if you follow these simple tips. So, the next time you are looking to add a little curb appeal, look no further than a can of paint and your front door. is the place to dream and discover your ideal home! Are you starting to get the itch to look for your first or next home, but don’t know where to start? You’ve come to the right place! Browse our real estate and lifestyle blog for home buying tips, mortgage guides, DIY ideas, interior design, lifestyle topics, general home inspiration, or just some homes fun. We are sure you can scratch that itch and find all the information and tools you need to help in your home search. Want to start looking at available real estate right now? Head to our home page and check out homes for sale or rent listings all over the country.

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About The Author
Karianne Wood
KariAnne writes the lifestyle blog, Thistlewood Farm, from the back porch of her turn-of-the-century farmhouse in the beautiful rolling hills of Kentucky. Thistlewood Farm was awarded Country Living Decorating blog of the year as well as named one of the top 10 decorating blogs by Better Homes and Gardens. KariAnne loves to paint mismatched chairs, listen to the crickets singing in the back pasture, walk hand-in-hand with her knight-in-shining armor as the sun sets over the river and drink sweet tea with lime during a thunderstorm. And she has never met a decorating project she didn't like.