Painting interior panel doors
Welcome to our guide to painting panel doors.
In this section we guide you through the straightforward task of painting panel doors. Whether you want to freshen-up your existing doors or you have purchased new doors for your home, this page will help you get the perfect finish for your paintwork.
We look at preparing the door, applying the primer/undercoat and finally the top coat.
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To complete this task you will need:
- Suitable primer (new wood)
- 2 Paint brushes
- Suitable undercoat
- Suitable top coat
- Fine sand paper
- White spirit and cloth
- Knotting (if required)
- Wood filler (if required)
- Paint scraper (old wood)
- Sugar Soap (or similar)
Preparing the door for painting
The first thing to do is to remove the handles, plates and lock mechanism, this makes the painting job much easier.
To prepare new wood for painting, first sand down the door with a fine sand paper following the grain, any sharp edges should be slightly rounded off.
Wipe the door down with a cloth and white spirit to remove any dust. Apply knotting to any knots, this will stop any resin leaking from the wood and spoiling the finish.
Use a suitable wood filler to repair any joints or cracks, leaving the filler slightly proud and then rubbing down with fine sand paper.
Wipe the door down with a clean cloth and white spirit to remove all dust and debris.
Check for any flaking paint, remove with a scraper and then feather the surrounding paint with fine sand paper to even the surface, fill any open joints or cracks leaving the filler slightly proud and then rubbing down with fine sand paper.
Rub the entire door down with a fine sandpaper (especially if it is gloss paint).
Wash the door down with sugar soap and allow to dry out.
Painting the Door
Applying the Primer
Apply an even coat of primer working it well into the grain of the wood, ensure to give a good coat to the end grain and any knots.
Allow to dry and then rub down with a fine sandpaper, then wipe the door down with a clean cloth to remove any dust.
Applying the Undercoat
Choose a suitable undercoat for the top coat, preferably from the same manufacturer.
Apply an even coat using smooth wrist actions following the grain of the wood ensuring to catch any runs as you work.
If the door requires two coats the wait until the first coat is dry, rub down with fine sand paper, wipe the door down to remove any dust and apply the second coat in the same way.
Rub down the door with fine sandpaper and then remove any dust/debris with a clean cloth.
If the paintwork is in sound condition then you may not need to prime or undercoat the door (especially if it is the same colour), although it is advisable to sand down the existing paintwork and apply a thin undercoat, for this follow the instructions above.
Applying the top coat
Apply the top coat in the order as shown in Fig 1.1, start with the beading around the panels (A) ensuring to catch any runs, then coat the panels themselves (B) with smooth strokes of the brush again following the grain of the wood.
Next paint the vertical stiles (C) with smooth vertical strokes following the grain of the wood.
Then coat the horizontal rails (D) using horizontal strokes with the brush.
Now coat the vertical runs (E) using smooth vertical strokes with the brush ensuring to leave an even finish where the joins of the horizontal rails meet.
Finally coat the edges of the door (F) with smooth vertical strokes, ensuring to catch any runs or build ups of paint on the corners.
Allow to dry and then rub down the door with fine sandpaper, wipe the door down with a clean cloth to remove any dust, and then apply the second coat in the same way.