By Mary Ellen Polson
Chip away any loose paint and sand surface with 80-grit sandpaper so that the surface will hold new paint.
Paint the door with wood primer, starting at a top corner and working toward the floor, then painting the other side, including the edges. Let dry, then sand with 220-grit sandpaper. Clean with a tack cloth.
Apply the first coat of finish paint with a quality-bristle brush, using the same stroke method. Apply paint to an unpainted part of the door and brush back into wet paint. Allow to dry.
Sand the first coat lightly with 220-grit sandpaper and clean with a tack cloth before applying a second coat. Allow two days’ drying time before resanding and cleaning prior to adding a third coat.
Allow another two days before reattaching the door or removing the painter’s tape.
Watch the Video: How to Paint a Paneled Entry Door
See more videos like this at How to Paint a House Right.
Cover the entire surface of the door with a clear wood preservative such as boiled linseed oil, starting with the molding and edges, then the flat surfaces. Allow to dry thoroughly.
Brush on the stain, blending the edges with light, overlapping strokes. Wipe away any excess. The longer you let the stain soak in, the darker the finish it will be. Allow to dry for 24 hours before applying a second coat.
After applying the final coat, let dry for two days. Then apply multiple coats of a good quality varnish. (Use marine-grade spar varnish for an exterior door; ordinary polyurethane will yellow and crack quickly when exposed to sunlight and damp.)
Refresh as necessary with additional varnish coats.
Prime the door with an oil-based primer. Apply several coats of a brilliant-quality enamel, such as Fine Paints of Europe’s oil-based Hollandlac. Polish with fine-grit sandpaper between coats, and wipe down with a tack cloth.
For best results, apply at least five thin layers of paint, until the last coat reaches the desired shine without sanding.