How to Paint a Steel Entry Door

Things You'll Need

  • Drop cloth or plastic
  • Masking tape
  • 4-inch flat paintbrush
  • 2-inch flat paintbrush
  • Paint roller
  • Metal primer
  • Medium-grit sandpaper
  • Bucket of soapy water
  • Clean rags
  • Acrylic latex paint

Steel entry doors offer added security to the home. However, most steel doors lack style and look bland. One quick remedy to update the look of your steel entry doors is to paint them.

Clean the door using the clean rags and soapy water. Allow to dry. Remove the doorknob, locks and any additional hardware that may be attached to the door.

Block off the door frame and any other part of the door you do not wish to paint, such as windows and mail slots, with masking tape. Lay down the drop cloth or plastic by running it under the door so that it covers the space under the door and beyond the sides.

Sand the door with medium-grit sandpaper to make the surface of the door smooth and even.

Apply the metal primer to the door with your 4-inch flat paintbrush.

Use your paint roller to evenly apply the latex paint to both sides of the door.

Use your 2-inch flat paint brush to apply paint to areas the roller cannot reach, such as crevices.

Allow paint to dry.

Add an additional coat of paint, following steps 4 through 7.

Remove masking tape. Re-install doorknobs, locks and all other hardware removed prior to painting.


  • It might be easier to remove the door from its hinges and paint the door in a workshop, if you have one. A drop cloth that extends 3 feet beyond both sides of the door is ideal to ensure no paint spills will hit your walkway and floors.


  • Don't paint a steel door on a sunny day, as direct sunlight may cause the paint to run. Always sand the door and use a primer made especially for painting on metal surfaces to ensure a smooth, even finish.