A bare exposed metal garage door is susceptible to rust and requires paint to protect it from natural elements. The paint will increase its life and enhance the appeal of the exterior of your house, and the surrounding landscape. A good paint job is a cost effective way to protect your metal garage door for many years to come. Follow these steps to successfully paint your metal garage door yourself.
Step 1: Douse the Metal Garage Door with Water
Use a garden hose at high setting to spray your metal garage door and wash away dust, dirt, grime, grease or debris.
Then, spray liquid detergent on the door and use an abrasive sponge to scrub it in circular motions. This step is essential to ensure an even coat of paint, so make sure you scrub the entire surface of the door thoroughly, including the base, sides and corners. This vigorous scrubbing will remove stubborn and stuck grime and dirt, and roughen the surface so paint can adhere to it better. Use a sturdy step ladder to reach the top of the door or high corners.
Spray the metal garage door with water from a garden hose again to wash away the detergent and any residue. Allow the door to air dry thoroughly before you proceed.
Step 2: Sand the Door
Use a medium to heavy-grade sandpaper to sand the entire door. This will rough up the surface to ensure the paint sticks to it better. Spread newspapers to the base of the door to prevent any primer or paint stains.
Step 3: Apply Primer
Primer is not essential, but it helps the paint adhere to the metal, and gives it an overall even and smooth finish. Purchase several cans of exterior metal spray primer, or use a liquid form with a paintbrush. Apply an even coat of primer to the entire surface of the door, including handles and any knobs or bolts.
Wait for at least 10 to 12 hours for the primer to dry thoroughly.
Step 4: Apply Paint
Purchase a can of acrylic paint in your desired color. Dip a roller into it, and apply it on the door, starting from the top and moving downwards in straight lines. Allow parallel coats to overlap each other by several inches so you cover the entire surface area with paint. Step back to check any areas you have missed out, especially those under any horizontal panels, and paint them with a paint brush or a contour brush.
Pay particular attention to the edges and corners, and use a contour brush to paint areas that are hard to reach. Allow your metal garage door to dry thoroughly for 24 hours.
You can apply two or more coats, until you get the color you want. The end result will be a metal garage door that looks as if it were new.