How To Paint Doors And Trim Like A Pro
Hey guys! Let’s talk about how to paint doors and trim. I know you are waiting for my laundry room reveal, and it’s hard to wait, right? The laundry room is coming along really well, and if you are following me on Instagram then you are aware of the progress. This post is actually a part of the laundry room.
Let’s Get Started With The Tutorial!
When you think of redesigning or decorating any corner of your house, you go through a process. As I always say, “Decoration is a process to go through and over time you get really good at it”. To me, the entire decor process is therapeutic and I understand that, on the other hand, it can be tiring as well. However, if you make your plan before you start anything, you already achieve 80 percent of your goal in order to accomplish a task.
Walk through the room and start thinking what would it take to make it presentable. Sometimes a can of paint can do the magic. I our old home I have painted all our trim and doors to give them a fresh look, and I am going to do the same thing with this house. You have already seen my small closet I painted, and it’s just the start of a lot more to come.
My other painted projects
The Best Basic Supplies You Will Need
- Primer (I do prefer Glidden)
- White Paint (The best paint ever)
- Painter’s Tape and paper roll
- Speckle filler (My most favorite)
- Sandpaper (I use 120 grit mostly)
- Caulk with Caulk gun (a must have)
- Paint brush ( I like the angled brush )
- Small Roller (for the Doors)
- Drop Cloth
- Jar and liner
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Prep On How To Paint Doors And Trim
The first thing I would do is clean the doors and trims in order to get rid of any dust or debris. If your door and trims are not that messy, a simple dusting brush should be more than enough. But, if you have children who like to mess with everything the best bet is deep cleaning. I prefer homemade cleaner… Warm water mix with Dawn soap and a bit of ammonia. You can also use Clorox. Make sure you put a mask on while using either of the above-mentioned cleaners.
Once you are done the cleaning. it’s time to tape off all the areas you don’t want to get paint on. If you are painting the first time I would recommend putting paper rolls on the floor just to be safe. I always use tape on either side of the trim unless there is wainscoting, as in the laundry room I am working with the wainscoting. In this scenario, you would tape above the top board., and tape around the door casings.
The filling is one of the important steps when you are thinking of painting your doors, trims, wainscoting, or even rooms. I know this tutorial is about “how to paint doors and trim“, but by following this easy process you can paint any room, including walls in the house. The best filler is DryDex. It’s like magic once you apply it. It looks like pink when first applying, but later on, it will turn white as it drys.
Good tip: Don’t put way too much filling. Just use it to fill things up. As my husband is good at woodworking. But in regards to painting or prep, that man can’t do either of them. He really overfills all the cracks and holes.
The last step in prepping for how to paint your doors and trim is sanding. I use 120 grit sandpaper and smoothly sand away from the extra filling. If you are painting walls, you can use an electric sander, but for doors and trims just use the sandpaper.
Good tip: Be very careful when you work with MDF as it’s not the greatest to work with. In our old home, we had beautiful wooden baseboard but since this house is builders construction we have MDF all over. However, light sandpaper for MDF is just fine.
Steps On “How To Paint Doors And Trim”
Step No. 1: Caulk
You are with me so far and following the tutorial on how to paint doors and trims, right? Oh, just keep reading.. You are going to totally give your room a new and impressive look! Caulking should be done right before the priming job. I have experience with both ways to use caulk before and after the priming. I personally found it more beneficial when you caulk it before, for the better results.
Caulking really makes your job look very professional. Once, I was done with painting our guest room and I called the floor guy to fix something and he asked me who painted your trims. I said, “I did it”. He was very impressed, and said: “Wow, it looks like a professional did it!”. It made me so happy.
It is a fairly easy process. All you do is use your caulk gun to run a small line of caulk between the door casing and the wall, or wall and trim. I run in a straight line as I mentioned above. Frankly, I use a microfiber cloth to clean the extra or use my finger to make it really pretty. Some people use the caulking tool, but I am no fancy gal. I just make it work with my finger. You, by all means, can use the caulking tool.
Step No. 2: Prime
Priming plays an important role. Especially when you are using it on raw wood or on a darker to a lighter color. If you are going from darker to a different dark color, I would suggest using a primer with tint. Otherwise, the white primer is the best. I use Kilz primer.
Use a paintbrush to apply your primer. I have always used the primer in the past, and the results were fascinating! I only use one coat though, as one coat of primer mostly does the trick. However, in our laundry room, I have not used the primer this time, as it was not as messy as paint. I just wanted to give it a fresh look, so I painted away. Wainscoting needed paint as well.
Priming really helps to prevent the dark stains or any imperfection. It also prevents your paint from peeling off the wood. This time I worked with MDF. Hence, I skipped priming. I am going to use it in our bathroom as I am replacing MDF baseboards with more durable ones because my kids splash a lot of water while taking baths.
Step No. 3: Paint
After you’ve done with all the necessary steps, it’s time to start the paint process. Yes, the pre-steps take time in order to get ready for how to paint doors and trim. Make sure your primer is dry before you apply your paint. I mostly wait for a few hours and that’s more than enough. In the past, I have used Glidden paint and it was wonderful. It’s easy to clean and it’s durable with kids.
The last paint project in our old house was to paint our media center I happened to discover Glidden paint, and I am sold forever. It’s like a no-brainer and a super time saver. When I use something, I have to think about my kids first as they are into everything. For instance, they really don’t need to check out my china dishes under the cabinets, but they would like to explore a whole lot of the world. Hence, I look for the product I can handle and easily clean with them.
It’s a personal choice but I always like white trims as they just look very clean and crisp. They make spaces look wider. I know it’s delusional but to be honest, that’s how I feel. On top of it, if you are not using white paint on your wall then you should consider it, because it will make your wall color pop!
How To Paint Doors And Trim Application
Roller VS Brush
I like to use a brush in order to apply paint as opposed to a small roller. I have had experience with both, and ended up liking to use a brush over the roller for trims with exception of painting wider trims. The roller works best when it comes to slab doors.
Don’t Remove Trim
I would like to mention that if you going to paint the first time, don’t try to remove your trims… you will be asking for a mess. Normally I would remove my doors, but this is the first time I didn’t even bother, and there is no difference. Well, I wish I would have known this before!
So far now I have painted almost 12 slab doors and a few panel doors. While painting panel doors, keep this in mind:
- Always use a brush
- Paint the casing first
- Don’t remove the doors
- Paint the panels first
- Paint the clear area around the panels
- Let them dry at least 4 hours before you touch them
- If you are painting white and have children, use the paint I mentioned above, and you will thank me later!
I would highly recommend this paint:
There are no visible brushstrokes with this paint, and no drips. It’s a great formula! The only drawback is that it’s a little more expensive than the other doors and trim paint you would use, although it’s totally worth the price. I recommend extra high gloss sheen.
Step No. 4: Tape Off
Take the tape off when the paint is a bit wet, but not too wet. It’s very easy to remove the tape on wet paint as opposed to when it’s totally dried. I learned this with my personal experience. It doesn’t take off any paint and the tape comes off very easily. If your paint is completely dry, then use the sharp knife to loosen up the tape on edges.
Special Tip For MDF
MDF is not great to work with, but mostly builder’s homes have that kind of wood all over. If it gets bad or rotten the only way to fix it is replace it. However, I have recently learned the trick is that if you use DryDex with a bit of water and then place DryDex on it like plaster, it works the best. As you can see below in the picture of my casing around the door.
I have written this tutorial based upon my personal experience on how I paint doors and trims. However, I am not a professional painter. I am just a gal who shares how to save money while making your house beautiful by doing different inexpensive DIY projects. I have been painting since 2010 when we purchased our first home.
Hope the tutorial helps. I would love to hear about your favorite paint or any special supply you prefer to use when you paint to make your life easy!