Door Makeover + Appliance Spray Paint

At our place we have a side entry, which we use most often to get in and out of the house. Since we use it so frequently, it’s gotten a bit worn over the years and badly needed a door makeover. Door are sometimes the last thing you’d think of to paint, but they can make such a difference. With a little appliance spray paint and a new door knob, I saved about $200 on this recent project.

The door before. We have both a screen/storm door and an inside/regular door in this entry.  This is the inside door, which was a faded medium teal color. I never found anything else in the house this colors, nor does it match any of our 3 house colors (1 main, 2 trim) so I don’t know why it was selected as the door color winner. Even the inside of the frame was this color. Although I admire the painter’s choice versus beige or white, it did nothing for me.

Inside Door Before

I had some leftover paint from our master closet ceiling in a high gloss that I thought would work well on this, specifically since it isn’t actually on the outside of the house and I didn’t need an exterior paint. Nor did I have exterior paint and I’m all about the reuse. I had it, I’ll use it!

This is a metal door, so paint made for metal such as Rust-Oleum is a good choice for it, even if it was painted previously. But my door is protected by a storm door, so I used latex paint. Definitely sand first so it adheres well.

I got creative with how I’d cover the windows and ended up sliding paper behind the panes to keep paint off the glass. This was not the best idea, so don’t try it. The paper stuck to the panes and I couldn’t get some of it off. You try and learn!

First I sanded down the flat parts, and used TSP on the rest to clean it up and got to work. TSP takes off residue and prepares a surface for painting.

Painting the Door

Here is how the door came out. Not the hugest different since the colors we so similar, but a definite improvement. Someone remind me to wash my window!

Door Before and After

Next up was the storm door. It seemed like the previous owner’s cat took a liking to it since there were lots of scratches and it definitely wasn’t looking as bright as it could be. Plus the doorknob does not work well. It was the kind that turned and it kept getting stuck on the inside latch, it was so irritating.

Door Inside Out

At first we thought we’d have to get a new door, but while wandering around the hardware section at the home improvement store {where some of my best ideas come to me} I thought – why not just get a new handle and paint the door?

Genius idea! I mean, I paint pretty much everything else right? First I had to remove the hardware and prep the door for painting. The frame around it is also pretty beat up. There are significant holes in the wood and a broken spring for the storm door to close like it should. The latch was shimmed with plastic and it was an all around mess. Makeover needed, I told you.

Door Before

I took all the hardware off and the handle for the screen door. It’s pretty easy to switch out a door handle if you’ve never tried it. This is where the money savings really is. To get a new door with installation around here is about $250. But a new handle and some spray paint is only $45. That is major savings in my book, for very little elbow grease.

Door Handle Before

Next up was cleaning it up and painting it. I knew the screen door wasn’t wood, or metal so I couldn’t use regular spray paint on it. And cleaning didn’t really help at all. While shopping the spray paint section I came across appliance spray paint, which is meant for refrigerators and stoves, probably other small items too. And I thought I’d give it a whirl. A failure with spray paint for plastic lead me to try the appliance paint, the plastic stuff was way too thin and didn’t cover at all. Appliance it is.

You can see on the bottom right the coverage I got after just 1 coat. Now we are talking. The door ended up taking about 4 light coats of paint. I always find white is the hardest to cover and it takes lots of coats to get it to cover well.

Spraying the Door

After putting on our new handle and finishing the spray painting I decided to paint the inside of the door frame too. It was that faded teal color so I gave it a quick coat of Rust-oleum oil based paint in glossy grey. I really like that paint, I’ll have to tell you more about it, I painted some outdoor chairs in it and they came out well.

Although I still have to replace the strike plates {I think that’s what they are called?} and maybe strip or replace the hinges, I’d say this door makeover has come a long way. We even make a new {router-ed of course} plate for the handle since it needed one inside the door frame. It’s just a piece of wood screwed into the door frame.

Painted Door Frame

Here is the new handle. We got it at Home Depot and it was about $30. I like how it has a wide/long plate to cover up old holes you may have in your door. We definitely needed that. Inside of the door on the left, outside on the right.

New Door Handle

And here is the storm door before and after. Looking at this I think it could still use more coats, but it took one can for both sides of the door. Maybe I’ll get more.

Storm Door After

What do you think? Would you ever makeover a door?

Have you tried appliance epoxy spray paint?


  1. these are the projects i always hate doing but they always have such impact! looking good!

  2. Is the teal door a wooden door? Our front door is AWFUL and my BF keeps telling me we have to take it done and do all this work to it. I bet this would work just as well (if not better) and would be so much faster!

    • Hi Joy, It’s a metal door and you can absolutely paint it while it’s on the hinges. You just cover parts up with painters tape, easy! I would get Rust-Oleum oil based paint if there is NOT a storm, for wear-ability. Otherwise, enamel paint or latex will stand up well too. Hope this helps!

      • Ah, I thought so. Ours is a wooden door. It will be a slightly bigger project than this one. But I still argue I can leave it on the hinges. Thanks for backing me up!

  3. Lisa@ Before Meets AFter says:

    My front door is dying for a makeover. I keep reminding myself but my to do list keeps getting longer and longer and it just gets pushed further down! That storm door reminds me so much of my family’s home. There’s something to be said about a cold climate storm door 🙂

  4. Great job! Our front door is a MESS! Its REALLY OLD and when the screen is in ..the door has warped a little and weathered a lot. I am so embarrassed of it but I don’t even know it can be fixed if I paint it. I could use some advice!

    • Hi, I’m sure you can definitely fix it. Paint will always freshen things up, and will fix the weathering. If the screen is out of shape, you can actually buy a new one and replace it in the track for little money. Hope this helps!


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