Front Door Makeover

Our front door has been waiting on a makeover since we moved in; I bought the paint for it back in January and then never got around to actually painting the door. We put up new lights and got rid of the overgrown bushes but never quite got to the door. Since it was one of the last small projects on The List, I decided to tackle it so it could be pretty for Christmas. Here it is before – such a sad brown color with bright brass hardware.

So I started by taking off the brass kick-plate to spray paint it along with the rest of the door hardware.   Surprise!  Rot!  Uh oh!  This stopped me in my tracks for 10 minutes until I could get Kevin to take a look.  The bottom of the door is rotted almost all the way through on one side and not doing much better on the other.  We will need a new door sooner than later, but since those are expensive we decided to go ahead and put some lipstick on this pig until we get a replacement.

Taking off the hardware was pretty easy – just unscrew the dead bolt & knob from the inside & pop off the bottom cover of the handle & unscrew it as well.

I set all the door hardware out on some cardboard in the front yard so I could spray paint using the Krylon Dual Metallic Finish with the paint & primer in one.  The closest color that Home Depot had to coordinate with the black light fixtures was called Carbonite.

In order to make sure that the screw heads matched the rest of the kick-plate once it was re-installed, I set the screws in the original holes and pushed them into the cardboard.

For the deadbolt, I put a spare key in the key hole so that the spray paint wouldn’t mess up the lock and stood it up by pushing the back bar through the cardboard.

Same for the main handle.  With the handle, it’s also important to move the lever for at least a coat so that all the surfaces are painted.  I learned it probably would have been best to push the lever down for the first coat instead of the 2nd/3rd so that you don’t mess up the finish on the tip of the lever (like I did).  It’s not very noticeable but a good lesson for later.

Here it is after 1 coat.  It took about 4-5 very thin coats to get an even finish.

I alternated spray painting the hardware with coats on the front door.  Here is what the paint looks like in the can…definitely a little pinker than it turned out in the end.

Supplies needed for painting were pretty minimal – just a plastic roller pan, 4″ roller, 2″ paint brush, drop cloth & some rags.

After one coat it was looking pretty good but looking back I probably should have primed it first to cut down on a top coat or two.

I didn’t wait long enough (according to the can) between the first few coats because I was afraid I wasn’t going to finish before it got dark.  I would definitely recommend starting early in the morning so that you have plenty of drying time between coats.

A trick that I like to use to keep the paint & brushes from drying out between the coats is to cover the roller pan with Glad Press’n Seal.  This cuts down on the clean up and is easy to remove & replace each time between coats.  During clean-up if I’m not going to keep the roller, I wrap it in press’n seal & pull it off the handle & drop it in the trash.   If I’m using one of the cheap plastic roller trays, I just drop it in a trash bag & seal it up.  That may not be “green” but it does save a lot of clean up time.

I think the door took about 4 coats of paint plus some touch up in the panels.

Here’s the finished product.  SOO much prettier than the sad brown door.

The hardware turned out really nicely as well.  I had to get it back on before it was fully cured because it got dark, but luckily it didn’t get scratched up.  Hopefully the finish will hold up but this was definitely a cheaper alternative than paying $200+ for new hardware.

It’s pretty from the inside too!

I think the front of the house looks so much nicer with the red door & without brass hardware.  We also added the garage hardware recently to make them look like the newer carriage doors that several neighbors have.

One last before:


& after:

2 Responses to “Front Door Makeover”

  1. Wanda says:

    Love the red door! Great improvement! I have been wanting to change the color on my door from green to a red/burgundy color. You may have motivated me, now to wait for warmer weather!

  2. Barbara DeMore says:

    Looks great! Can’t wait to see it!

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