How to Paint a Door

The selection of paint, colour and technique that your door is painted with can dramatically impact the entry of any space.

Here are a few tips that will help you create a lasting first impression for any room or home.

Download PDF Print

Estimated Time

Approx 5–10 mins per coat to apply
• Water based paints approx 2 hrs to dry.
• Alkyd based enamel paint approx 4 hrs to dry.
• Oil based enamel paints approx 16 hrs to dry.


Here's what you're going to need:

*We estimate you’ll need 500ml of paint to cover 2m2. We recommend using PPG Paints Ultimate Alkyd Enamel.

  • Paint*

  • Drop

  • sandpaper

    180 & 240 grade
  • painter's
    masking tape

  • paint

  • roller

  • roller

    To match
    frame width
  • Roller

  • paint

    To match
    frame width


  1. Determine the paint colour for your door. Review our colour charts at your local paint or hardware store and visit our website for more colour inspiration. Remember to consider colours you’ve selected for doors, trim and ceilings when making your choice.
  2. To get the best possible results we recommend taking the door off the hinges, and laying it flat on a raised surface or leaning it against a protected wall.
  3. If laying the door flat, use drop cloths on floors where appropriate, or tape plastic drop cloths to walls if painting the door against a wall.
  4. If you are unable to remove the door, wedge the door in place to ensure it doesn’t move while painting.
  5. Sand down the door. If necessary, remember to lightly sand door edges.
  6. Apply painter’s masking tape to hinges and door handles.
  7. Stir your paint thoroughly before pouring it into a paint tray.
  8. Paint the edges around hinges and door handles first with a brush.
  9. Paint the door using either a W or M technique, starting a roller’s width out from the edge, and rolling from mid-height towards the top of the door and then down.
  10. When applying water based enamels, coat the door and spread paint swiftly, without over brushing to avoid visible brush marks.
  11. Wait for the paint to dry before applying a second coat.
  12. Once the second topcoat is completely dry, re-hinge the door to the frame.