We have a freshly painted front door!
It wasn’t in desperate need of new paint. I just decided that it was time for a change.
When we moved into our home, the door was painted black. Very…builder-grade, one quick spray, never touched again. It was in rough shape.
That first fall, about three months after moving in, I painted it red. Someone asked me if a red door signifies something, and the thought never even crossed my mind, but turns out it does!
That never influenced my color choices but, nonetheless, interesting to know. Read more about it here: Front Door Colours and Their Meaning.
This photo is from last year after I painted the porch and stairs.
Painting your front door is one of the easiest ways to improve your curb appeal, and it is also an easy DIY project you can finish in one day.
After doing this for the second time, I have a few tips and tricks to share. I included a few commonly asked questions and answered them. I hope you find this helpful!
Choose a paint color. The color of your front door should complement the rest of your house’s exterior.
At the same time, it is an easy way to make a bold statement.
The color I chose this time around?
Green. A beautiful, rich green called Equilibrium, by Behr.
What kind of paint do you use to paint a front door?
Every brand has a suitable product, but Behr is always my go-to. First of all, make sure whichever product you choose is suitable for exterior use. I used Behr Ultra Stain-Blocking Paint & Primer.
Should you use a satin, semi-gloss or flat finish?
Most recommendations lean toward semi-gloss. Let me list a few characteristics because, for me, it is a matter of preference.
- Easier to clean
- Dries to a harder and stronger finish
- Longer drying time
- Has a stronger odor
- Easily shows roller and brush strokes
- Not the easiest to apply with a brush
- Cleans fairly easy
- Dries relatively quickly
- Shows less paint strokes than glossier finishes
- Has a low odor
- Dries very quickly
- Applies like a dream
- Leaves no paint strokes and dries to a perfect finish
- Not as easy to clean as glossier finishes
- Not as strong as glossier fishes and can show wear and tear quickly
I chose a flat finish because I love the beautiful, flawless appearance it creates. However, please note this is my personal preference and is not necessarily the best choice for everyone.
I am not too worried about wear and tear since we only use our front door occasionally.
For the benefit of a beautiful finish, I’m willing to touch up any scuff marks along the way.
Clean the door well to get rid of all dust and dirt.
Use a sanding block or sandpaper to degloss the old paint.
Wipe the door down again to get rid of all the paint dust.
Do you need to prime before painting?
That is usually a good idea. I did not prime since I knew what type of paint was used before (by me).
Mask off all areas you want to protect from paint, like a glass insert and the hinges.
I highly recommend removing all hardware instead of just masking it with painter’s tape.
In the photo above, you will see that I took off only some of the hardware.
After unscrewing the back part of the lock, I could see lots of wires that connect the front and back pieces. (It’s one of those that you can unlock with an app on your phone). I could not figure out how to take it apart, so I carefully screwed it back on and taped it off. I tried!
Can you paint a front door without removing it?
Yes, you can! In fact, I prefer it that way.
Should you use a brush or a roller?
I use a 4-inch foam roller and a brush—a crafting paintbrush with soft bristles, to be exact.
The soft bristles ensure a super smooth finish with no brush strokes showing.
I use the foam roller on all flat surfaces and the paintbrush for the detail and edges around the window or glass insert.
What color should you paint the edges/sides of the door?
No, not everyone knows this, and yes, there is an easy answer!
Look at your door while it’s open. The edge facing the outside should be painted the same color as the exterior. The edge facing inside should be painted the same color as the back of your front door.
The green I used already looked pretty good after one coat but perfect after a second coat.
Depending on the color you are using, you might need more than two coats.
Once you are satisfied with the coverage, you can carefully remove all the painter’s tape.
Before reinstalling the door hardware is a great time to clean it thoroughly and oil all moving parts.
And lastly, admire your gorgeous, freshly painted front door!
I can not even begin to describe how happy this color makes me! I am totally smitten!
The only thing missing? A fall wreath!
Any guesses what I’ll be doing next?