How to Apply Paint to an Aluminum Garage

While you are painting the rest of your home, you may want to spruce up your aluminium garage door at the same time. Metal surfaces have a reputation for being difficult to paint. While a metal surface will scratch more easily and the paint is more likely to flake, painting aluminium isn't an impossible task . With the correct preparation and the right supplies, your aluminium garage door can be painted with great success.

Clean the garage door with mild soap and a sponge. Combine dishwashing soap and water in a bucket. Dip a sponge into the mixture and scrub the door thoroughly to remove all dirt and debris. Rinse the door with clean water. Allow it to dry.

Scrape away loose and flaking paint with a paint scraper.

Sand the door lightly with medium grit sandpaper. To speed up the process, use a palm sander. Sanding will add texture to the surface and will allow the primer to sink in and grip the slick surface. Wipe away any sanding dust with a damp rag.

Apply an oil-based metal primer with a roller and a brush. Paint the indentations and corners of the door with a brush and follow with a roller for the large, flat portions. Oil-based paints and primers are good for metal surfaces because they resist flaking and chipping. Allow the primer to dry.

Paint the aluminium garage door with oil-based paint using the same technique used to apply the primer. Apply the paint in two to three thin coats. Multiple thin coats will be more durable than one thick coat.


You can add faux finishing techniques to your garage door. Paint the entire surface with brown paint and apply a lighter brown glaze over the top with a rag. Wipe off the excess glaze with a clean rag. This effect will simulate real wood and will give the effect of a wood-clad garage door.

Things You'll Need

  • Mild soap
  • Sponge
  • Bucket
  • Paint scraper
  • Oil-based metal primer
  • Paintbrush
  • Paint roller
  • Oil-based paint
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About the Author

Lisa East Hunter is a consultant and freelance writer in Phoenix. Her background in marketing and technology led her to explore all avenues of writing. She is currently dividing her time between freelance writing and her consulting business. Hunter has a Bachelor of Science in management information systems and marketing.