5 Best Practices for Repainting Steel Garage Doors

Posted Wednesday, May 3rd, 2017


Is your garage door dingy and dirty? Did you try to wash it and still didn’t get the result you were looking for? It might be time to repaint.

If you have steel garage doors, you are in luck. Repainting steel can be easy as one, two, three. Simply, follow these five best practices and assure your doors look great now and into the future.

5 Best Practices for Repainting Steel Garage Doors

Prepare the surface

Best Practice #1 A Proper Cleaning

In preparation for repainting, it is necessary to remove all of the dirt from your garage doors. Here are 5 tips for cleaning painted steel garage doors.

Best Practice #2 Repairing Surface Imperfections

Before painting your steel garage doors, be sure to visually inspect the entire door for surface imperfections. If metal is exposed, rust can be imminent. Review best practice #3 for the best results. Minor scratches can be buffed or sanded. You want to paint a smooth surface.

Best Practice #3 Protect the Galvanized Surface

If your garage door has exposed metal, do your best to remove all of the loose residue and rust. A dull putty knife works well. Then use a primer specifically designed to protect galvanized steel from corrosion. Allow sufficient time for the primer to dry before you apply paint.

Best Practice #4 Working with Newly Installed Doors

If your door was installed sometime in the last two years, it is likely that the surface will have a layer of factory-applied wax. You must remove this layer in order for the paint to adhere well. To remove this wax, lightly scuff the surface with a GRAY (not green) 3M synthetic steel wool pad saturated with soapy water. Wipe and rinse clean with water only. Then perform an adhesion test. 

If the adhesion test results are poor, do not proceed. Contact Cressy Door and Fireplace to discuss options or alternative coatings.

Best Practice #5 Apply the Paint

After properly preparing your garage doors and confirming adhesion tests, paint the doors within 24 hours. Use high-quality exterior latex house paint. Do not use oil-based alkyd house paint on top of factory-applied finishes. Follow these rules:

  • Mix the paint thoroughly
  • Make sure the surface is completely dry
  • Avoid painting early in the morning
  • Avoid painting at temperatures below 50degrees F
  • Apply uniform coats with the manufacturers recommended thickness