How To Repaint Your Front Door

Oisin Butler Limited Painting And Decorating Specialist Dublin Ireland

How to repaint your front door.

In this article I aim to teach you how to repaint your front door.

Like everything else, when it comes to painting your front door the secret to getting a good finish is all about preparation.

Tools needed are:

  • Heat gun.
  • Paint scraper.
  • filling knives/blades.
  • Sandpaper (grade 80, 120, 240) & sanding block.
  • Good quality paint brush.
  • Paint kettle/container.
  • Dust brush.
  • Clean rags.


  • Aluminum wood primer.
  • Undercoat ( tinted to the same colour as your gloss).
  • Exterior gloss, satin or eggshell finish.
  • 2 pack wood filler.
  • White spirits.

If your door is in bad shape, lots of cracks, flaking paint, old paint drips etc then its best to start by stripping the paint off using a heat gun and scraper. Be carefull not to gouge out the wood when scraping and try not to burn the wood.

You will get most of the paint off with the heat gun, don’t worry if there’s still some paint here and there in the grain of the wood. Once you have finished with the heat gun allow the door to cool down before sanding.

Using a sanding block and 80 grade sandpaper give the entire door a good rub down until it feels smooth to the touch. When you are satisfied that its smooth, switch from 80 grade paper to 120 grade and resand the entire door again.

When finished sanding give the door a good dusting with a dust brush the n wipe down with spirits on a rag, once the spirits have dried off its time for your first coat

Before using any paint for the first time give it a good stir first, this doesn’t apply to varnish. With varnish you should give it a good stir the day before you use it because when stirring varnish you introduce tiny bubbles of air which will eventually show up in the finish.

If the door has panels then start with these first, applying the primer and working it in to the wood, make sure to lay off the paint with strokes going in the same direction ie from top to bottom. When the panels are coated then move onto the edge of the door, the edge you see when the door is opened. the back of the door and other edge are counted as the interior. Next prime the rest of the door starting at the top and working your way down.

When the primer is dry its time to start flush filling. Less is more when it comes to filling. Follow the instructions on the tin of 2 pack filler on mixing. Only mix small batches of filler at a time because it tends to go hard pretty quickly. Using the filling knife drag or scrape the filler over the surface of the door. its best to fill every square inch. Once the filler is dry its time to start sanding again using the block and 120 grade paper. When finished sanding dust and wipe down with a spirit rag the repeat the filling & sanding process again. Filling twice will give a better result.

Now its time for the fist undercoat. Apply the undercoat using the same method as the primer. When dry give the entire door a rub down with 240 grade paper, then dust and wipe down. When this is finished undercoat again and repeat the sanding process when dry.

If using oil/spirit based paints then you will have to leave each coat a day before applying the next coat.

Its time for the finish coat now. Make sure that the door is clean, dry and dust free before applying the top coat. Using the same technique for the other coats apply the finish coat. Make sure to only use a small amount of paint and really work it into the surface. Keep an eye out for drips!

If you are using a gloss and want a really glossy finish then apply 2 or 3 coats of gloss, making sure to give each coat plenty of time to dry and then a really good rub down with the 240 grade paper between coats.

Thats it, easy peasy!

If you like what I have shared here about how to repaint your front door, then please like my Facebook page!

painted front doors

painted front doors

painted front doors


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