Are you looking for ways to refresh your home's exterior? Painting your garage door is a simple project that can make a huge difference in your curb appeal. In this guide, you'll learn how to paint a garage door yourself with all the right tips and tricks.
Should Garage Doors Be Painted?
A lot of homeowners wonder if painting garage doors is a wise decision. After all, those doors are a large focal point and the gateway to your home. What's more, the doors are constantly opening and closing, which makes you wonder if there will be a great deal of maintenance involved. Fret not. If you properly prepare and paint your garage doors with the expert tips in this guide, you shouldn't have any problem achieving a beautiful, long-lasting upgrade to the appearance of your home.
Preparing Your Garage Door for Paint
Preparing your garage door is of the utmost importance and should not be overlooked. Without proper preparation, you could easily end up with a garage door that looks even worse than it did in the first place. The paint won't look as smooth, nor will it last as long. So, before you break out the brushes, follow these seven steps to a perfectly prepped canvas.
- Mind the weather. This isn't a project you'll want to start under the threat of rain.
- Start early. You should begin priming immediately after your doors are cleaned and stripped, so you'll need to give yourself plenty of time to complete the whole project.
- Clean the door. Cleaning is an essential step, whether you're painting your garage interior or exterior. Spray the garage door with a generous amount of all-purpose cleaner, wipe away dirt and grime with a wet cloth, and rinse well with the garden hose. Use a paint scraper to remove any loose paint or rust.
- Remove existing paint with a chemical stripper and a sanding sponge or palm sander.
- Once the door is completely dry, apply painter's tape to protect any areas where you don't want paint: door handles, window frames, trim, edges, etc.
- Unless you plan on painting your garage floor, lay a tarp or drop cloth beneath the door to protect your flooring and driveway from paint drips, splatters, and stains.
- Prime your doors with an exterior primer paint that is suitable for the material of your garage door (metal, wood, etc.). Apply primer just as you would apply paint and let it set for 24 hours before painting.
Applying Paint to Garage Doors
Painting garage door panels is a fairly straightforward process, but there are a few things you should know before you get started. For one thing, you'll need to choose the right type of paint for your garage doors‚Äîwhich is something we'll help you with in a moment. For another, you'll need to practice a great deal of patience during the process to avoid drips, bubbles, and uneven coverage. A garage door will require a minimum of two coats of paint, and each layer must dry completely before applying the next. There are two different ways you can go about painting garage doors: you can either use paint rollers and brushes, or a paint sprayer. A paint sprayer is definitely the fastest, most convenient method; however, it's also quite risky. Before you start waving your sprayer around, test it out on a large piece of cardboard and adjust the operation until you've got the right range and consistency. Be extremely cautious around the edges of your garage, where you could stain siding, brick, or stucco. Use large pieces of cardboard to cover these areas in case you accidentally extend beyond the desired area. The weather is also an important factor to consider. The best time to paint a garage door is in mild seasons when it's not too hot and not too cold. Additionally, you don't want to paint at the hottest point of the day if the sun's rays are beating down on your garage door. Depending on which direction your house faces, you may need to paint your garage door in the early morning or the evening to avoid sun exposure.
How Long Does It Take for Garage Door Paint to Dry?
A thin layer of garage door paint will take a minimum of twelve hours to dry completely. However, you may want to play it safe and wait a full 24 hours before applying the second coat, just so you can be absolutely sure the previous coat is fully dry. You might be feeling eager to finish this big DIY project, but trust us; it's better to wait than to mess up your paint job. If you're feeling anxious, step inside and use these tips to organize your garage so it looks good inside and out!
Best Paint Types for Garage Doors
The best paint to use for your garage door will be tough, durable, and extremely high-quality. Look for exterior paint that is specifically made for your garage door‚ not to be confused with paint for garage walls. The paint should be fully equipped with high-end protective features, such as UV resistance and rust prevention, if you want it to last. Here are a few excellent brand names that have solid reputations for providing high-quality, long-lasting garage door paint:
- Rust Bullet
What Color Do You Paint Garage Doors?
Now, let's talk garage door paint ideas. The best paint color for your garage door is going to depend on the design of your home and the look you're going for. White is the most common color for a garage door, and for good reason. White is capable of complementing all other colors, styles, and focal points. If you want something unique and eye-catching, however, don't hesitate to try something new. Adding rich wood tones to your garage can accentuate your landscaping and the surrounding nature, making your home look cozier and more inviting. A great rule of thumb is to coordinate with the color of your front door. This is a common eye-pleasing design trend most home builders adhere to. If you're still struggling to choose a color, login to your Pinterest account and search for garage door paint ideas for an endless supply of inspiration.
Care and Maintenance
Once your garage has been primed, painted, and sealed with a top coat, you'll find that there is very little maintenance involved‚ so long as you used high-quality paint. You care for your garage door just as you would any other part of your home's exterior: with an occasional rinse and spot-cleaning here and there.
Can You Paint an Aluminum Garage Door?
Absolutely. However, painting an aluminum garage door will not be as simple as painting wood. Additionally, you'll need to make sure that you use an oil-based primer and paint, which can be more difficult to clean up‚Äîbut the effort will surely be worth it once it's all finished and your house looks incredible!
What Is the Best Paint to Use on a Metal Garage Door?
When it comes to painting metal garage doors, you'll get the best results by using a high-quality acrylic latex exterior house paint. Like we mentioned earlier, make sure to choose a paint with reliable protection against the sun's constant rays, rust, and other elements. As far as your primer is concerned, it won't be hard to find a quality primer made for metal.
How Much Does It Cost to Paint a Garage Door?
The total cost to paint your garage door will vary depending on the size of your garage, the number of doors, and what type of paint, primer, and other supplies you choose to use. According to Home Advisor, the average cost to paint a garage door is anywhere from $200 to $500.
Total Garage Makeover
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