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How to Paint Exterior Door Frames

A painted door frame plays a big role in your home's curb appeal. A carefully selected colour can accent your house's exterior colour scheme for bold results, but a drab colour may actually detract from an otherwise perfect exterior aesthetic. If your exterior door frame needs a change, you can paint it in just a few hours.

Remove the door from its hinges. You can likely unscrew and remove the hinges directly with a Phillips screwdriver. However, on some doors, the hinges are built directly into the frame, so you'll need to pop-out the hinge-pin with a flathead screwdriver to remove the door.

Wash the door frame with a trisdoium phosphate cleanser. TSP products are ideal for prepping most paintable surfaces. This cleanser cuts through stuck-on grime easily, but it doesn't leave any filmy residue that could interfere with paint adhesion.

Dry the exterior door frame with a clean towel.

Stick painter's tape to any nearby exterior wall surfaces that you don't want painted. If you were unable to fully remove the hinges, or if part of the door's locking mechanism is embedded in the frame, then you'll need to place tape over these items, too.

Apply exterior primer to the door frame using a 2 1/2-inch brush, but only if you're painting a new, unfinished exterior frame. If the frame was previously painted, your new paint should adhere to the old layers of paint without any problems.

Apply oil-base exterior paint to the door frame using a 2 1/2-inch brush.

Peel off the painter's tape and reattach the door after the paint dries.

Things You'll Need

  • Screwdriver
  • TSP cleanser
  • Towel
  • Painter's tape
  • Exterior primer
  • 2 1/2-inch paintbrush
  • Oil-base exterior paint
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About the Author

Richard Kalinowski began writing professionally in 2006. He also works as a website programmer and graphic designer for several clients. Kalinowski holds a Master of Fine Arts from Goddard College and a Bachelor of Science in education from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater.