Painting a door frame can’t be a spur-of-the-moment decision as it needs preparation and care to make sure the final result is clean, professional and matches the interior door style. Anybody can do this with just some basic DIY skills but we would stress that you ask the advice of a professional, or us, if you’re not convinced about any step. The first thing we advise is putting down a dust sheet as the sanding process could make more of a mess than you’d think. Once you’ve prepped the surrounding area, you can move on to prepping the door frame.

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How to prep a door frame for painting

The first bit of prep for the actual frame is repairing any holes or cracks in the wood. Painting over these will be a hard task and will leave you with a less-than-professional finish. An inexpensive wood filler will do the trick. Once that’s dried you can move on to the next steps.

  1. Wipe the frame clean using soapy water and a sponge.
  2. Use a clean cloth to dry it and ensure there are no cloth fibres left over on the frame.
  3. Use fine sandpaper to smooth down the current paint coat.
  4. Wipe the frame clean again.
  5. If your chosen paint needs a primer or base coat then apply this now.

How to paint a door frame once prepped

Before you begin painting, make sure the brush you use is much thinner than the door frame width. If this is a job that will run over into another day too, make sure the paintbrush is stored in water to prevent it from drying out. Ensure all layers are dry between painting to prevent a messy smear of paint, and to ensure all coats work as intended.

  1. When the primer/base coat is dry take a small brush and dip it in your paint.
  2. Be sure to scrape off the excess on the side of the paint pot (too much paint will cause drips and brush stroke lines in the finished frame).
  3. Wait for the layer to dry.
  4. If needed, or if recommended, paint another layer.
  5. Once this is dry, apply a top coat as instructed.

By following the steps above you should have a professionally painted and great-looking door frame, all without much mess! Shake off the dust sheet in the garden and you may not even need to hoover.

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