How to Paint an Interior Door Like a DIY Pro — Capturing Wonderland

How to paint interior doors like a diy pro. A photo of my completed hallway makeover and dark grey painted interior doors painted iron ore by sherwin williams.How to paint interior doors like a DIY pro. Pinterest pin with four photos of fully painted upgraded builder-grade doors.,How to paint interior doors like a DIY pro. Pinterest pin with two photos of fully painted upgraded builder-grade doors.,How to Paint Interior doors like a DIY Pro. Six progress photos of painting the interior doors in my hallway makeover series. I painted them dark grey Iron Ore by Sherwin Williams.
Painting doors can feel intimidating. But after having finished all of our bedrooms doors I feel convinced literally anyone with zero skills can paint an inside doorway .
Finished painted doors in my hallway makeover. The hallway is now beautiful on both sides with dark painted doors with iron ore by sherwin williams.As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full disclosure policy here. When it comes to painting doors, interior will require a unlike scheme than exterior doors. But it still remains one of the quickest, simplest, and most cost effective ways to make a huge dispute in an sphere .
For example: a front door would require an exterior paint. But for a pantry door, water closet doors, a laundry room doorway, bedroom, or any other department of the interior door follow the recommendations below.

Another great way to update a flat door, dialog box door, or wooden doorway is to buy new hardware. ( Unless it has antique knobs, in that subject send them to me, hour angle ! )
But real flying, let ‘s discuss the two best ways ( and in truth your only two options ) to start this entire plan .

Two Options to Paint Interior Doors

There are a couple ways you could do this whole summons. Each option has it ‘s pros and cons .

Keeping the Door Installed

Leave the door installed and merely cover the hardware with painters tape .


  • Ease. No hassle of uninstalling or reinstalling.
  • No chance of misplaced hardware.
  • You don’t have to deal with moving a door back and forth to another location.


  • The chance for paint drips is higher.
  • When you paint the sides of the door there is always the chance of a door being accidentally closed.
  • You also chance getting paint on the door frame itself.
  • Painting an entire door (two coats front and back) when it wants to move back and forth doesn’t sound like a fun way to spend an afternoon.

Bedroom Interior doors being upgraded with a simple paint job. From builder-grade to classic farmhouse.

Uninstall the Doors

This is the best option, in my opinion. And it ‘s the choice I chose, for all the cons listed above. I used stools to raise them up while I was painting them which worked out bang-up. You could even use devolve cloths and equitable paint them one side at a time on the floor .


  • Quicker Process. The ability to paint while it is in a Horizontal position (on horizontal rails or stools in my case) made it a quicker process.
  • Less Chance of a Mess. I don’t have to worry about paint getting on my carpet or my freshly painted door frames.
  • Kid friendly. Able to paint the entire front, back, and sides at my leisure without worrying my kid is going to close the door. Or push it open with their hands.


  • Extra Time Added. Adds extra time to the project.
  • Chance Lost Hardware. Hardware has to be kept track of. Therefore, I put mine in a separate Ziploc bag for each door. I did, however, lose a single screw that fell into the crack between my carpet and door frame.
  • Space Taken. I had 3-4 doors standing around loose for 24 hours. Which is less than ideal.

Bathroom and Closet interior doors with a paint upgrade from builder-grade to upgraded modern farmhouse. Paint dark grey iron ore by sherwin williams. Having a few good quality paint supplies is necessity to a good solid durable paint finish that will last. thus, do n’t forget to read all about my favorite paint supplies here 7 Tips to Prep for Paint Like a Pro .

Optional Tools & Supplies

Watch “How to Paint An Interior Door Like A DIY Pro

Bedroom Interior door painted hallway makeover. Dark grey paint used iron ore by sherwin williams.

01 Choose Your Paint Type & Color

For this step, consider buying a few paint sample wall stickers and live with the colors you pick for a few days. Watch them in unlike ignite .
The first thing you want to do happens to besides be the most fun part of the entire painting visualize, save for the concluding initiation. Let ‘s revel in the joy of deciding on a color schema, paint finishes, & the expectation of new key !
For a durable rouge finish you actually want to make good decisions in these four aspects : color, Brand, Type and Sheen. I go into a set of detail about those three authoritative things in my post Paint a Dining Room in a Day + 5 Tips .

Picking a Color

It ‘s actually all about personal predilection when choosing a paint color. And whether you ‘re going for a boldface color ( a bold door can add a courteous pop of semblance ), benighted color, a neutral color, or simple ashen paint a coat of paint is going to make them look like new doors. But here are a few things to consider .
First coat of Behr paint and primer in Iron Ore by Sherwin Williams. One is standing up drying and the other is horizontal on stools drying.

Interior Door Paint Colors

My darling white paint color is White Dove by Benjamin Moore. It is creamy and not as harsh white as some colors can be. But when you ‘re picking any color you want to consider the paint schema you already have and compliment it .
In my hallway I have White Dove by Benjamin Moore and a half rampart painted Iron Ore by Sherwin Williams. Originally I had thought I would go with a classic white door. But the more I looked at my shabby, stained, and dirty white doors my position changed .
therefore the best option was a dark doorway, Iron Ore by Sherwin Williams to tie the stallion hallway together. And my doors have a less probability of needing patronize clean .
If you like the look of black doors, but are uncertain of using a black door paint, consider Iron Ore. It ‘s a capital exercise of a dark grey color, which could be a dainty compromise .

Type of Paint

If you choose the right key you wo n’t need that “ typical ” coat of fuse. I use Behr ‘s Paint and Primer in one from my local anesthetic Home Depot and it has never let me down. This very does come down to the Brand and kind of paint you ‘re investing in .
The typical paint used to paint an interior door is latex rouge. however, if you have a wood doorway you could consider it like any furniture project and try methamphetamine paint, milk key, acrylic fiber key, or any early viable paint options. In this site, however, you ‘d besides need a top coat like wax or polycrylic .
Three hallway doors after their first coat of paint has been rolled and brushed on. Iron Ore by Sherwin Williams. My super professional setup.

Paint Finishes or Sheen

Glossy paint has it ‘s advantages like being the most durable paint finish. And if you like a polish, then this is a good option. however, keep in mind the more gloss the harder the fairly up will be .
Flat Finishes will be the most syrupy. Which means better coverage in a one coat. however, it ‘s besides the hardest to clean aka the least kid friendly .
For this type of lotion I chose Eggshell as it has capital coverage and is inactive reasonably kid friendly.

5 Types of Paint Sheens

  • High Gloss
  • Semi-Gloss Finish
  • Satin
  • Eggshell
  • Flat Finish

How Much Paint Should I Buy Per Door?

You may be wondering how much paint you actually need for a door. According to Google, you will need 1 qt. of paint per door. But I was able to paint 6 doors for half a gallon. ( Two coats front and back ). This may besides be the dispute in that Paint Type, Paint Sheen, and Brand Quality makes .

02 Remove Your Door Hardware

For this footprint, you ‘ll need a Philips Screw Driver or Drill and Philips spot, and a Ziploc Bag ( quart size ) .
If your door is fresh from the hardware storehouse you can skip this dance step .
however, if you ‘re giving an honest-to-god door a newly coat of paint ( or even a second coating of paint ) keep read .
adding screws to hinges in the door frame after having filled the holes with toothpicks.When I uninstalled them I found many screws were loose due to the holes having been stripped out.
Toothpicks sticking out as I'm filling the holes that are too big for good screw to wood contact. The holes were all but stripped and this helped the screws grip.
door hinge holes filled with broken toothpicks to help the screws grab onto wood and make the hinge installed tightly.I added toothpicks in the holes when I went to reinstall them.

You may choose to keep your door installed, so you would keep the hinges on and merely use painter ‘s tape to cover them. Use a utility knife to cut around the tape-covered hinges .
however, for a master look you will want to remove your door knobs v precisely covering them in magnetic tape. Place all hardware in the quart size Ziploc bag including knobs, screws, etc .

03 Prepare Your Door For Paint

For this footstep, you ‘ll need cleaning supplies like general-purpose clean, leech, and a tabloid to dry it off, 120 Grit Sandpaper. You may besides need wood filler and a putty tongue to repair any small ( or large ) damages .

Painting Over Existing Paint

If you are painting over existing paint you will want to use 120-grit emery paper to do a exhaustive mule sandpaper. For older doors consider if you may need to use a lead kit out to test for lead paint before you even move advancing .
Cleaning products for proper paint prep when painting interior doors. Totally un-fancy cleaning supplies. Homemade all-purpose cleaner. I soaked Lemons in vinegar for over a year and there isn’t a thing it can’t clean.

Clean The Door Thoroughly

Before you go to paint an inner door you ‘re going to want to make indisputable your surface is prepared for rouge. If it ‘s the first coat it ‘s deoxyadenosine monophosphate easy as giving it a actually exhaustive scrub down .
For this separate I used a pout bucket with strong water, a scrabbly sponge, dawn dish soap, and my homemade general-purpose cleansing agent ( vinegar + lemons ) .

  1. Scrub everything very thoroughly, ensuring you’re getting into any recessed areas.
  2. Then dry with a clean dry rag.
  3. Let it sit and dry thoroughly for 10-15 minutes before applying paint.

04 Choose Your Painting Methods

For this footstep, you ‘ll need either a Paint Sprayer, a 2 ” Angled Paint Brush, or a 2 ” curler with fluent surface roller pad .

Three Painting Methods to Consider

Old Reliable – Hand Painting with a Brush

I started out with my 2 ” angled brush think I ‘d just brush it all out. And that worked reasonably well and honestly I did n’t have any of the dreaded brush marks. But it will take you a long time if you have 6 doors to paint as I did .
My youngest son is the best paint partner you could ask for. He diligently paints with his paint brush while I roll. Enlisting help is always a good idea.

The Best Overall Option – 2″ Roller with Smooth Surface Pad

After a quick slip to Harbor Freight I picked up a $ 2 roller and $ 3.50 tamp down of Smooth Surface Roller Pads I decided to give rolling a go .
I ‘m angry at myself for painting 2 solid doors before I invested the $ 6 in this tool .
initially I besides thought I had to brush the recessed parts of my gore door, but then cursorily realized I could use a roller for the entire thing. And it was an easy way to finish a single side in less than 5 minutes .
Two inch roller and paint cup supplies for painting interior doors.

For Best Results – Paint Sprayer

professional painters obviously will use this method acting as it is the way to get the best key job for these 3 reasons .

  1. The fastest option once you get it going.
  2. Consistently gets better results.
  3. Less work.

however, they are n’t inevitably inexpensive. And if you do happen to own one you will need a proper set up to make it worth your while. a well as taking into circumstance how many doors you will need to paint .

05 – How to Paint an Interior Door Efficiently

The most efficient process will be to take this project and use steps alike to those of an fabrication trace .
Two inch roller painting interior doors Iron Ore by Sherwin Williams.

10 Steps to Paint an Interior Door

  1. Uninstall all doors. You can leave them in their current locations, however.
  2. Remove all hardware. Keep the Ziploc with the original door, just in case it matters.
  3. Take one door to your set up area. I put my door on top of two stools to keep them off the floors.
  4. Clean the side you’re currently working on. Then wipe it down with a clean rag and allow it to dry for 10-15 minutes.
  5. Pour your paint in your cup or tray.
  6. Paint with your brush or roller in the direction of the grain. My door is hollow core, but still has faux-wood grain and I was careful to roll or paint in the direction. This will help you avoid any brush strokes being noticeable once dry. Also, don’t skimp on the paint.
  7. Paint the Recesses. Use your brush or roller to get into the recesses and smooth any paint that goes beyond. Then paint the flat inner panel.
  8. Paint the door in one sweeping direction. So, whether you choose to go top to bottom or bottom to top keep going in that direction. This way you won’t be brushing over drying spots which may cause the drying paint to come off.
  9. Don’t forget to paint the edge of the doors. But avoid getting paint in hinge recesses.
  10. Watch for any dripping. This isn’t as much of an issue if your door is being painted while it is horizontal (laying down).
  11. Let it dry for 10 – 15 minutes. Then move it to a standing position elsewhere to dry completely.
  12. Repeat. If you have any additional doors to paint repeat steps 3-10.

Paint inner recesses with a two inch roller. Painting interior doors with iron ore by sherwin williams. Paint one side of the recess.
Paint outer recesses with a two inch roller. Painting interior doors with iron ore by sherwin williams. Then paint the other side.
Paint with the faux grain of the interior hollow door. Painting interior doors iron ore by sherwin williams. Paint with the grain.

I hope I have given you a thorough reason about this very simple action and the tools to help you feel less intimidated by it all. I guarantee you can do this .

Thanks for stopping by !
Author photo of a 38 year old woman with shoulder length dark brown hair, blue eyes, she's wearing a grey shirt with pockets.Owner & Author Julie Boston
Hi, I’m Julie! Mother to five beautiful kids, Homeschool Educator, Writer, Handicraft & DIY Enthusiast, Photographer, Thrifter, and Furniture Restorer. Follow along for fun DIY projects creating a handmade home on a budget ! Read more about me here→

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