Smaller Painting Project
Repainting the house is a fairly major project, and quite time-consuming. Even repainting one room’s interior will take a couple of days. But there are a few smaller projects, like a front door, that can be done on a free afternoon, or perhaps two afternoons if you have to do some priming and prep work.
As with any painting, we will have a few choices to make.
Colour – If you have a wooden home you should paint the door to be at least a little distinct from the rest of the surrounding timber. Doors are not means to blend in. A bright-coloured door in a white-walled home can look very slick. A white door on a timber home can also look good.
Brick homes need a door colour that complements the style of brick. If you have a screen door or security door in front of the main door, then we need to choose a colour that matches this.
Trim – Most doors have some decorative trim. This might be regular patterns like convex rectangles or inlaid patterns. Or it might have the leaf or other organic patterns. These might need to be painted a different colour to the main door.
For regular patterns, you can use masking tape along the edges to help make the paint neat. Complex patterns will require a delicate painting touch.
Paint – Semi-gloss is often used for doors. This is both because it just seems to look right, and because semigloss paint is better than most paints at handling sunlight and rain. It also is quite easy to wipe clean. Look for paint that is also mould-proof.
Latex exterior paint is a good option, but there are also some good oil-based exterior paints.
The door’s previous paint is probably a little worse for wear. If the paint has merely faded you can just clean the door with sugar soap and repaint. Perhaps sand the surface first so the new paint can form a stronger bond. But if the surface has cracked you will need to do some repair work.
If the door has suffered damage you will need to do some prep work. Fill in any large cracks or dents in the door with plaster. Then sand the surface flat when this has dried. Use a facemask and goggles when sanding.
Primer will help the new paint bond. You will need to use a layer of good exterior wood primer if you have done any repair work on the door.
Paint the door with a medium-small brush, perhaps 2 inches wide. Use a smaller brush, perhaps 1 inch, if you have to paint around details.
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