High-quality doors last for many years, but every homeowner will know that, particularly in busy family homes and warmer weather, interior doors in Las Vegas tend to be exposed to ongoing wear and tear from constant usage.
One of the best ways to ensure your doors remain in pristine condition is to learn how to hang interior doors correctly so they are well-balanced and do not rub or snag in the frame. However, over a few years, you may decide a fresh coat of paint is essential.
Painting is a straightforward job most people can complete themselves, but it is essential to work through the correct preparation to ensure your newly painted door lives up to your expectations.
Prepping a Door Before Painting
Preparation is key, and the right paint will depend on the finish or veneer on your existing door. Most people opt for satinwood or gloss paint as these have waterproof properties that prevent the wood from becoming damaged due to humidity or constant usage.
Oil-based paints are less ideal because, over time, they can become discolored due to exposure to light, and your local hardware store can suggest a water-based gloss or satin paint that is ideal for interior doors. Sanding the door creates an adhesive surface and allows the new paint to settle properly; painting directly over old paint may mean your finish is patchy, doesn't cure properly, or develops bubbles.
Be sure to fill any cracks or dents, letting the filler dry thoroughly before sanding back so it is even with the surface of the door. Laminate or veneer doors will need a coat of primer following sanding to ensure the paint sticks to the door correctly. You will also need to prime the door if you are painting over an old layer of oil-based paint.
Top Tips Before You Start Painting
It is a good idea to prep the room before you paint, putting down dust sheets or other protection to stop paint splashes from reaching your carpet, flooring, or furniture, and dusting to remove any dust or residues that will stick to wet paint.
You can either paint the door as-is or remove it from the frame. If you choose the latter, remove the handle and hardware before painting; masking tape around the frame is also worth using to ensure any slips don’t mark the wall.
How to Paint an Interior Door Correctly
It’s important to begin working from the edges of the door, using smooth strokes of the brush to cover the sides. If your door is flat, you can use a roller or large brush to apply the first coat, removing excess before each application to prevent drips. Painting in a thick layer causes the paint to sag, bubble, and droop.
Doors with panels are best painted with a brush because a roller cannot work into the grooves, although you can use a roller on the flat areas if you prefer, and then paint the panels and smaller details with a brush.
The first coat will normally take a few hours to dry, depending on various factors such as the paint, the temperature in the room, and the amount of airflow. It is important never to apply another coat before the first coat has dried as this usually leads to smudging.
Checking a Painted Door Is Dry
When the original base coat is completely dry and you can press a finger into the paint without leaving a mark, you are ready to apply the next coat. Most doors require two coats, but you may need additional applications if you’re using a lighter color paint or if you’re painting over a darker color.
After you have finished painting, let the door dry before replacing the handle and other accessories and rehanging it. It is also wise to open your doors and windows to ventilate your home both during painting and while the paint dries, which will help the paint cure faster and ensure you don't accumulate paint fumes inside your property.