how to paint metal front door

how to paint metal front door
Tools Needed
1 Gripper Primer
2 Exterior Paint
3 Paint Roller
4 Roller Tray
5 2 Inch Angled Brush
6 Stirrer for the Paint
7 Paint Stripper
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Materials Needed
1 Stripping Gloves
2 Sandpaper
3 Scraper
4 Drop, Clean-Up Clothes
Total Cost
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Estimated Time
2-3 Hours
Skill Level: Beginner
The total cost and duration may vary when hiring a handyman!

Project Overview

painting a metal front door

You may think of painting walls in different rooms of your home, arts and crafts but you may not have considered painting a metal front door. This type of door gets drilled by the sun every day and the metal may get very hot. Through time, the pain is going to start peeling off your door. In just a couple years after painting it, the door may look like a cracked egg all over. When others come to your home, they won’t be all too thrilled. Some people say that lighter paint is going to help with this.

However, if that isn’t something you want to do, you may need to try out different things before finally figuring it out. There are many paints and primers out there so you may need to mix and match until it is just right. The one thing to remember is that you should only pain when there is shade and not when the sun is fully out.

Step-By-Step Instructions


Prepping Your Door

paint for a door

If the door already has been painted, the steps for this will vary based on how well that paint has held up. If the current paint hasn’t peeled or cracked, you may just need to sand and clean it and then apply the new paint. If the current paint is peeled or cracked, you may need to use the paint stripper to get that paint off. You can use a heat gun if need be as well. If you are using the paint stripper just make sure you aren’t damaging the metal door. You can also choose a chemical stripper too. This can be messy but it needs to get done before you get the new metal front door paint applied.


Sanding The Door

paint for a metal front door

You will then need to sand and wash your door to make sure it is clean. All the current, damaged paint should be wiped off. You will sand the areas that need it with your sandpaper. This will be needed if the paint just won’t come off. Then you will wash the door with cleaner and make sure it is thoroughly rinsed. Let it fully dry before you prime and paint.


Priming The Door

painting a metal front door

Priming is going to be your next step. You will apply one coat of your primer to the flat metal front door surfaces. The angled brush will be used to get any panel spots that have not been covered. Before, you move onto painting, let it fully dry. Keep in mind that if you are using a darker colored pain for the metal front door, the gripper primer. Sometimes the primer can be added to the paint as well. If that is done, you won’t need that many coats to cover the door.



painting a door

You will begin this step by rolling one coat of your exterior metal front door paint over the entire door. Again, your angled brush will be used to cover any areas that are hard to reach. Let that coat fully dry before moving on. Once that coat has been dried, add your second coat lightly and let that layer dry. Do any touch-ups if need be. Remember to be safe and read the instructions on the paint for any warnings. One of the common warnings is this:

If you are scraping, sanding or removing paint, it can lead to dusty lead. This is toxic and can cause serious health issues like brain damage. This is especially true for pregnant women and children. It is recommended that you wear a mask over your face while painting. Clean up the painting area carefully when finished.


If you want to paint a metal front door, these are the steps you will need to take. This is not a very tough job but one that you should think about before jumping into. You will need high-quality primer and paint to make sure it won’t peel or crack within a couple years. Be sure you aren’t painting the door in direct sunlight. It should be a shady area so the heat doesn’t crack your paint. There are many paints and primers available and you will surely find one that will work. Sometimes this is a trial and error project. Keep in mind of the color you are painting with. If at all possible, try your best to stick with a paint color that is lighter since those ones are much less likely to crack.

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