Our Address:

2427 Allen St Dallas, TX 75204

Phone Number:

(214) 978-4400

How To Paint Interior Doors

How To Paint Interior Doors?

Share This Post

Share on facebook
Share on linkedin
Share on twitter
Share on email

Doors are highly used and abused, so during their painting, pick a durable paint finish, having a semi-gloss or gloss sheen. Cleaning is made easier with semi-gloss or gloss and will not lose face with regular cleaning. You need to keep a minimum of two topcoats to achieve a uniform look.

If the existing paint finish on the door is a glossy paint, dull the finish using a de-glosser. Do not detach doors from the hinges where they are hanged as you paint them so that you can easily paint the two sides at once.

In just a few seconds, you can perform the removal of most modern locksets and also replace them within two minutes. This implies that it is easier to remove them than masking while painting.

Just make sure you perform one of the two.  Let’s look at how to paint interior door.

What are the Things I should consider while Painting the Door?

There are many things to consider when painting doors in your household. Door painting is different from the normal painting job. It requires careful planning and execution.

We recommend you seek help from a professional painter if you are not experienced with door painting.

Interior door painting will include:

  • Figure out the material used to make your door before panting it. This may include PVC door, Lacquer door, laminate door, American door, and so on.
  • Choose the appropriate door paint (for instance, do not choose a lacquer door paint to be applied on a PVC coated door).
  • Figure out if your door is polished. Since the polish causes the door to be slippery, it will prevent the paint from adhering properly during painting.
  • Ensure you sand the polished door before painting
  • Remove the door before painting it.
  • You cannot paint a door that is painted dark color just once. First, apply a primer coat before you paint.
  • You can apply as many layers of paint as you like till you achieve your desired color tone.

Now you can see that painting doors at home are very much easy. The only necessity here is to pay attention to the materials you choose, whether your door is polished.

This is where you can easily choose your paint if you know the material type and polish status in advance.

What Painting Method is the Best for Interior Doors?

Manual door painting:

This is a manual door painting method. So you can use your hand to paint the door in your house using a brush and paint. This method is a bit challenging; however, it is a fun task if you have the skill and time.

It would help if you enjoyed creating new things with your own hands. With a roller brush, you can paint your door.

If you plan to paint your door with multi-color and don’t want to paint the door motifs, you can just close the door motifs using paper or newspaper.

Painting the door using the pressure spray gun method:

This is a technique that makes the door painting process so simple. This method allows you to paint your doors and even your walls.

You paint using this method by putting the paint in this sprayer. It is a very simple method that allows painting of all the doors in your home within a short period.

Sinking the door to paint the paint barrel:

Unlike other methods, this is a more expensive technique. However, if you plan to complete the painting process within a short period, you can consider this method. The doors are dismantled, sank in a large barrel of paint, and removed. It’s that easy.

You have completed your door painting process. However, as said earlier, you should consider the paint gun or hand painting technique because this is quite expensive.

Steps to Paint Interior Doors

Even though painting requires some more steps, it is still an easier task than you think. Approach it with the following steps on how to paint interior doors in your house.


  • Hammer
  • Brush
  • 4-inch roller
  • 120 grit sanding block
  • Rag
  • Nail
  • Painter’s tape
  • Paint for trim

Paint tray

1. Select a Paint Color for Interior Door

If you plan to paint your door white and there is white trim around it, it is advisable you use the same paint color and finish that matches the trim.

Benjamin Moore’s Cloud White and Dove White are some of the preferred whites for trim, either satin or semi-gloss.

It is not compulsory to paint your doors in white color; you can also consider dark black or grey for your interior doors as the color is a perfect choice.

Although there are unlimited color choices available for your interior door painting, it is best to use white or grey color for the interior.

The following are my three favorite paint colors perfectly used for interior doors:

  • Whites – Benjamin Moore Dove White, Benjamin Moore Cloud White,.etc (There is a bit less yellow undertone on the Cloud White)
  • Light – Mid Tone Greys: Repose Grey from Sherwin-Williams and Charcoal Slate from Benjamin Moore.
  • Dark greys: Kendall Charcoal from Benjamin Moore and Wrought Iron from Benjamin Moore.

2. Remove the Door

Removing the door from the frame is the next step immediately you get material/supplies and choose color. Even though a door can be painted without removing it, removing it from the frame will yield a better result.

This will enable you to easily access the door edges as well as towards the door frame, which is normally covered by the door. Close the door for proper removal from its hinges.

Then, put the nail under one of the hinge pins and gently hit it with a hammer. This should remove the hinge pin forcefully. Repeat this with the rest of the hinges and remove the door.

Get a Free Estimate
From Professional Painting Company

3. Get your Door ready for Painting

Good preparatory work is what kick-start any successful paint job. You can either remove your doors and paint or paint them in place.

If there are knobs already on your door, you can remove them as painting around them won’t be easier. If you don’t want to remove the doorknobs, cover the hinges using painter’s tape.

To repaint an older door, the number one step is to use wood filler to fill any imperfections or gouges. Then sand the areas till you achieve a smooth surface using 150 grit and sand the entire door lightly with a 220 grit sandpaper.

Get rid of most of the sanding dust using a cloth and then remove the residual dust from the entire door using a tack cloth.

Pro Tip

If your door has been painted before the ’80s, it could have been painted with lead paint, which will require the right precaution for sanding, so make sure you test for lead paint if you can. Then proceed to prime your doors if necessary.

Priming will be required if:

  • You are painting a new, unprimed door.
  • You want to apply standard latex paint on a door that was already painted with an oil-based paint.

Pro Tip

How do you test for oil-based or latex paint on a door? Grab a rag (preferably white) and put rubbing alcohol on it, rub it on your door. If the paint comes off on your white rag, it is latex paint; else, it is oil-based paint.

Priming is not necessary if:

  • You are painting new, pre-primed doors.
  • You are applying latex paint on a door that was already painted with latex paint.

You are painting Benjamin Moore Advance on a door that has been previously painted. You can apply this paint on either a latex or oil-based paint and is perfect for making sure there are no roller or brush marks on the finish. I often use this paint for trim and doors.

4. Sand and Clean the Door

Take the door and lay it on a higher surface, such as a pair of sawhorses. Sand the door’s edges and surface using a 120 grit sanding block. Make sure you sand out any noticeable bumps or loose pieces of paint gently. Use a tack cloth or rag to wipe debris and dust from sanding down from the door.

5. Mask with Painter's Tape

Place a piece of painter’s tape on the hinges. Cut around the hinge using a utility knife to get rid of the excess tape. Cover the doorknob area with tape.

6. Paint the Door

If you are painting on a dark-colored door, making a sudden color change, or painting on unfinished wood, you need to prime the door first. Priming will remove the need for extra coats of paint.

If you plan to paint the door the same color or closer to the existing color, you don’t need a primer. Normally, doors and trim are painted in semi-gloss or high gloss paint.

One can easily paint glossy interior paints. Start painting with the door’s panel. Paint the recessed areas of the door panel using a paintbrush.

Immediately you are done with the whole panels, paint the elevated surfaces of the panels as well as the rest of the door using a 4-inch roller.

Leave the paint to dry out completely. Then turn the door to the opposite side and repeat the step.

Pro Tip

Make use of a larger roller to paint a flat door that has no panels (if you have one).

7. Rehang the Door

Immediately the two sides of the door are dry, hand it back on the hinge. Ensure the hinges are well aligned, and then reinsert the pins. If you plan to add some creative looks to your interior door, consider applying accent colors or geometric shapes.

This is also the best time to access the condition of the door hardware. If it requires an upgrade, switch the hinges and doorknobs out before you rehang the door.


What is kind of paint you apply on interior doors?

Doors are highly used and abused, so during their painting, pick a durable paint finish that has a semi-gloss or gloss sheen. Cleaning is made easier with semi-gloss or gloss and will not lose face with regular cleaning. You need to keep a minimum of two topcoats to achieve a uniform look.

Is the priming of my interior doors necessary before painting?

Decide whether or not to prime the door before painting. Priming should not be necessary if the door were formally painted with latex paint. You need to prime the door before you apply latex-based paint if it was painted with oil-based paint.

Can you also paint cheap in-house doors?

Yes. You will want to get the surface ready and make sure there is adequate space on the door to hold the layer of paint. Get the door ready for painting by cleaning the surface, then sanding using rough sandpaper to roughen up the door’s surface and allow the paint to adhere properly. Semi-gloss paint will often keep them clean.

What roller is the best for painting doors?

Between 3/16 and ¼ inch thickness is ideal for smooth surface roller covers to paint interior doors, metal doors, cabinets, and trim. They are effective with semi-gloss or gloss paints as well as oil- and water-base enamels. Use the 3/8 to ½-inch thickness on semi-smooth surfaces like drywall.


The best method for most painters is to paint the top two panels and the mantis, stiles, and rails surrounding them. Then proceed to the next lower pair of panels, and more. The use of a paint conditioner elongates the duration of wet edges, which enable the paint to carry more easily, and improves its bond, which are all great qualities for door painting.

If you need further help to paint your interior paint, don’t hesitate to contact us.

More To Explore

Table of Contents

Dallas Paints - Best Painters in Dallas

Get a free quote

How much will your project cost?