Follow these simple steps on how to paint a fiberglass door plus find out the best kind of paint to use for your project.
Our front entry had many types of wood tones going on with the stairs, our hickory wood floors, and the front door so it needed a fresh revamp to give it an updated look to go along with the rest of the remodeling we’ve done in our home. We’ve painted every wall and trim casing in our home since moving in our home just about two years ago and I’d been wanting to get to our front door next.
The front door is a fiberglass door, though I’m unsure on brand. Therma-True is a common brand name for front doors we commonly use for our client homes when they’re working with builders. Fiberglass make really quality doors because they don’t shrink or swell with the elements or rot or split like a solid wood door can. They are also fairly easy to paint!
We already applied one coat of primer to the trim before I took this before photo below.
What Kind of Paint Do You Use on a Fiberglass Door?
Any latex based paint will work on fiberglass. If you are painting the exterior side of a door, I recommend exterior paint as it’s designed to hold up against weather, but you can certainly use it on the interior side as well. I chose to use Sherwin Williams Pro Classic because it’s a solid paint line that isn’t too expensive. I’m only painting the interior side right now so I didn’t get an exterior paint.
As far as paint finish, a semi-gloss or satin is best. The shinier the paint finish, the more durable, but keep in mind semi-gloss also shows more imperfections.
I decided on a semi-gloss finish in the color Boothbay Gray by Benjamin Moore, a really pretty light grey blue paint color. I had Sherwin Williams paint match the color. They can match just about any Benjamin Moore paint color!
Boothbay Gray was on my list of the best blue grey paint colors if you’re looking for a few other paint color ideas.
How to Paint a Fiberglass Door
Painting a fiberglass front door is simple if you follow these steps.
Materials You Will Need:
Step 1. Prep Your Door
Start by wiping down your door with soap and water or a little vinegar water solution and a rag.
Step 2. Fill Holes
Going to a lighter color means that any nail holes will be visible so you will want to fill them. I used some wood filler and my finger to fill each hole. It dries pretty quickly, then give it a light sand to smooth it out.
Step 3. Tape
The prep work to tape off windows is a little tedious but it’s well worth it in the end. You can paint faster and it gives you a nice clean edge. I used this 2” painters tape because it has a little more margin. Since I didn’t remove the door hardware or hinges, I also taped them off. It probably took me about an hour to tape it all off. Then run over your tape with a metal spatula to seal the edges so you don’t get any paint that leaks underneath the tape.
Step 4. Prime
Primer is key to getting a good, durable finish that sticks. I ALWAYS use Zinsser 123 Primer and it adheres great! It’s also what we used when priming all of our wood trim in our house. Using your angled brush, apply an even coat of primer to the door.
My #1 paint brush I LOVE is this Purdy brush from Amazon. It holds enough paint and gives you super sharp lines and is easy to work with. A cheap paint brush sheds bristles when painting and that’s the absolute worst. Seriously can’t recommend this Purdy paint brush enough!
Pictured above is our front door and side lights with one coat of primer. I like doing two coats of primer because I think it holds up to chips even better and because primer is much cheaper than finishing paint. I’d rather do 2 coats primer and 2 coats of finishing paint than 1 coat primer and 3 coats finishing paint.
Step 5. Paint
Now you are ready for your finishing coats of paint! I use the same angled brush for paint as I did for priming. Apply an even coat of paint, careful not to put it on too thick or you’ll get drip marks. I ended up doing 2 coats of paint, 3 coats in a couple areas that looked light still.
Originally, I planned on leaving the door casing Pure White like we have around all the other doors in our home, but decided that it looked best painted Boothbay Gray.
Step 6. Remove Tape
Once your paint has dried, you can remove the tape and see your final product! Sometimes you might have to use a utility knife to cut through the dried paint to remove the tape cleanly.
Admire your freshly painted front door! I love the pale grey blue color and how much brighter it looks compared to the dark, dated wood look it had before.
Painting fiberglass was very simple and can be finished in a day. I only used about a half quart of paint so it doesn’t take much to get a whole new look.
Next, I’d like to swap out the light fixture in the entry and do something with the glass on the door and side lights. The glass looks dated right now but I want something simple I can do myself. Let me know if you have any suggestions or ideas!