We decided that one of our first project would be to replace our front door – the actual door and the hardware. The door looked cheap, was missing weather stripping, only the deadbolt would lock (not the handle), and we wanted to add some color to the very brown house. We went to Home Depot to look at all of our door options. There were options including pre-painted, hard wood, and glass details. You can easily spend $2,000+ on a nice wood pre-hung door. However, since we were on a budget, we opted for one of the cheapest doors – primed steel with a small half circle glass feature. Home Depot didn’t carry any slab options, but we didn’t want to/feel we needed to replace the frame. If you do decide to go with a pre-hung door (as we had to) and don’t plan on replacing the entire casing (as we didn’t want to), make sure to measure the hinge location.
We opted for the recommended quart of Behr Premium Interior Paint & Primer in One. We picked “Flirt Alert” red in semi-gloss (satin was the other recommended option). We also bought a foam roller and angled paintbrush for the detail. After getting the door home, Derek measured the hinge locations. We then took the hinges off and used painters tape to tape the window and weather stripping. We put on the first coat of paint, and the door seemed to soak it up. After that coat dried, there was not even coverage and white was still showing through, so we put on another coat. When those 2 coats dried, we were disappointed that our door did not look like we expected. The gloss was not even and there were lines from the roller. We did some research and decided to use 220 sandpaper to sand the areas that had bad lines. On the next 2 coats, we also made sure to keep a wet edge, light pressure, and the right amount of paint. While our door is not perfect, it definitely looks better than after coat 2!
Struggles with painting steel: soaks up paint and shows lines from the roller
Solutions: use a foam roller, keep a wet edge (don’t over-roll!), use light pressure (don’t press too hard!), use the right amount of paint (make sure that the roller is evenly coated and roll out on edge of paint tray so it is not dripping). Sand down any awkward lines between coats.