How to Paint a Metal Garage Door 

Posted on: December 27th, 2021

Oftentimes, your garage door is one of the first things people see when they pull up to your home. But when it starts showing signs of wear and tear, people wonder just how to paint a metal garage door and if that is even an option. While painting a metal garage door requires some time and effort, it can certainly be done and is a fairly simple way to increase your home’s curb appeal and potentially give it a whole new look. If you live in the Sacramento area and would like help, click here to get your free estimate

Do I Have To Prime Before Painting?

Can You Paint a Metal Garage Door? 

Now that we know that you can in fact paint a metal garage door, let’s look at some of the do’s and don’t to ensure your hard work gives you great results. 

Some new garage doors come already primed. This is nice because they already did the first step for you. Now it’s just a matter of applying garage door paint or paint designed for metal, on top of the primer. Keep in mind that if you purchase a new garage door and it’s been galvanized, metal paint won’t adhere to it! You’ll be left with a peeling mess after a few days. We recommend not painting galvanized doors. So today we’ll be focusing on pre-primed metal garage doors or metal doors that have been previously painted. 

Best Paint for Garage Door 

Acrylic latex exterior house paint is generally your best choice for metal garage doors. But don’t make the mistake of purchasing cheap paint. You won’t regret paying a little more for a paint that will look better longer. It may even save you money in the long run because you won’t need to apply several coats. 

In most cases, one coat of metal garage door paint is all it takes. However, use your judgment after the first coat and move forward from there. You may need a second coat if you’re painting a light color over a darker shade. 

The best paint finish for your garage door is gloss or semi-gloss. Because these finishes dry hard, they protect your paint from scratches and scuffs. Glossy paint also holds up very well in humid or wet climates and wipes down easily for very low maintenance. A satin finish is also a good option. Below is a list of the best paints for aluminum or steel garage doors: 

  • Everlast Exterior Paint from Lowe’s 
  • Behr Ultra Exterior 
  • Zinsser Perma-White Rust-Oleum 
  • The Montage Signature Paint 
  • Diamond Brite All-Purpose Enamel 
  • Rust-Oleum 8781502 when painting galvanized metal

Best Primer for Metal Garage Door 

Rust is the biggest enemy of metal. A garage door showing signs of rust can be unsightly. There are a number of primers on the market that are designed to prevent rusting and corrosion. We highly recommend using a high-quality bonding primer for best results. Here are a few primer options that have proven successful: 

  • Kitz Adhesion Bonding Primer 
  • Gempler’s Eco-friendly Rust Converter and Primer 
  • Rust-Oleum Clean Metal Primer 
  • Corroseal Water-Based Rust Converter Metal Primer

Choosing a Color 

With the thousands of paint colors out there, narrowing it down to just one can be tricky. You may want to choose a color that is similar to the color your door was previously painted. But, if you’re looking for a change, be sure you pick a color that goes well with your siding, trim, and any brick, stucco, or rock accents you have. Most people lean toward neutrals such as grey, tan, white, or beige. Just be sure you’ve thought it through and love your choice. 

How to Paint a Metal Garage Door 

With a little guidance, you can paint your garage doors in a weekend. Following these simple steps can help your project flow smoothly and ensure the best results.

Step 1 Consider the Weather 

It’s a good idea to check the weather forecast a week in advance. You’ll want to paint on a day that is not too hot and not too cold or wet. Paint may not dry properly in extreme temperatures. The ideal temperature for painting is between 50 and 75 degrees. 

If you choose to prime and paint with a sprayer, make sure there isn’t much wind. Not only is wind frustrating to work in but most of your paint won’t reach its destination. 

Step 2 Clean Metal Doors and Frame 

Thoroughly wipe down metal doors and frames with soapy water. Remove all stains, rust, and grease from your doors and dry with a clean rag. Make sure all dust and residue are completely removed.

Step 3 Preparation 

  • If you’re painting over old paint, light sanding is necessary, making sure all flaking paint is removed. Wipe down so no dust or debris remains from the sanding process. 
  • Use heavy-duty painter’s tape to mask off areas you don’t want to be painted. This includes windows locks, trim, and the edges of your garage. It may be a good idea to lay a tarp down onto your driveway and garage interior to protect from overspray as well. 
  • For easy maneuvering, disengage your garage door mechanism so you can open your door manually. 

Step 4 Priming 

Using a paint sprayer or quality roller, apply your primer of choice. A sprayer is a much quicker option but a roller works just fine. Once finished, open your garage door partially so your panels won’t stick together. If your door has inset panels, prime these first. Allow several hours for your primer to fully dry. 

Step 5 Painting 

Apply quality exterior paint to your door. Bottom to the top, starting with the inner panels and working your way out. Survey your work. If it looks covered and meets your standards, consider yourself done. But, if you can see uneven patches or spots where the old paint is peeking through, opt for a second coat. Allow at least 12 hours of curing time in between coats. Once done, remove the tape and don’t open your door until it’s had time to dry overnight. 

How to Paint a Metal Garage Door Conclusion 

If you have any questions about painting metal garage doors or just don’t have the time to paint your door yourself, give PaintRite Pros a call. People live very busy lives and often prefer experts to take care of tasks they aren’t totally comfortable with. Our team of painting professionals will be happy to take care of all your painting needs for you. We have an excellent reputation across the entire Sacramento area because we love what we do and we want you to love it too. We have Spanish speakers if you prefer to speak in Espanol

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