What's the proper way to sand and paint a steel front door?
#11
  
Hi, 

For the past couple of years I've taken down the front door, moved it into the garage, given it a light emery paper sanding and sprayed it with rattle can spray paint.  It has held up pretty well, but the door gets afternoon sun and in the winter time the storm door has the window (vs the screen) in it and it fades over time, as shown in the picture.

Well, the paint is starting to flake off.  I'd like to be able to sand the flakey area down but also feather it so that when I spray it again, it blends in.  My questions are these:

1) How do I sand the flakey area?  (I've got an assortment of WW tools, but I don't have one of those flapper sanders you chuck in you drill, but it would be an inexpensive purchase of that's the recommended route.  Is that what you'd do?

2) Are all spray paints created roughly equal?  IIRC, I've been using Krylon.  Is there a better, more fade-resistant brand?

3) Is spraying the way to go?  (I would think painting it with a brush would leave noticeable brush strokes, no?

4) How would you tackle this job?

(I'll wait 'til spring to do it as it is is still very cold here in Mass.)


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#12
  Re: What's the proper way to sand and paint a steel front door? by Dumb_Polack (Hi,  For the past...)
I think I might stop in at a local Sherwin Williams or Benjamin Moore store and speak with someone in person. 
Proper preparation is usually the key, but at some point in time proper product becomes paramount...
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#13
  Re: What's the proper way to sand and paint a steel front door? by Dumb_Polack (Hi,  For the past...)
I've never done it... but my dad has, and I'm done a fair amount of painting metal things. My parents' front door definitely has brush marks!! Steel is SO smooth that it won't hide anything. My inclination would be to spray also. As for sanding, you could probably get away with using a palm sander. I've also used what are basically scotch brite puff balls on a stick in my dremel. Used them a LOT when I repainted wheels for my car. Most importantly, CLEAN it well and get a good layer of primer on there so whatever you add sticks to the metal. Not sure about brands, I usually go Rustolium because home depot is close to me. You could also spray some clear over it which may help with the UV fading. It also means you can control the gloss level with the clear, not the base. You could even use wheel paint which is pretty rugged.
Looking forward to your results. I may be doing my door after we get new siding...
Benny

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#14
  Re: RE: What's the proper way to sand and paint a steel front door? by brianwelch (I think I might stop...)
(01-23-2020, 11:42 AM)brianwelch Wrote: I think I might stop in at a local Sherwin Williams ... store and speak with someone in person. 
Proper preparation is usually the key, but at some point in time proper product becomes paramount...

Duration.

Yes Yes Yes


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#15
  Re: What's the proper way to sand and paint a steel front door? by Dumb_Polack (Hi,  For the past...)
If you end up with scratches from sanding, a couple coats of a high build primer will allow you to sand them out. Brian gives excellent advice above too!
Benny

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#16
  Re: What's the proper way to sand and paint a steel front door? by Dumb_Polack (Hi,  For the past...)
I third the advice to talk to Sherwin Williams since it has already been coated with Krylon can paint.

Reds and Blues and so on don't hold well in the suns uv light and heat.

I remember a man who had a beautiful front door that retained it's looks all the many years I knew him. He had a custom automotive paint shop paint it. But scratches couldn't be readily repaired and it was costly.
"There are no strangers- only friends I haven't met.
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#17
  Re: RE: What's the proper way to sand and paint a steel front door? by daddo (I third the advice t...)
Yes, quality paint after the correct preparation, which means go talk to the folks at SW's or BM's.  

FWIW, some purists argue that doors should only be painted with a brush.  I'm not a purist, but I do like the look on paneled doors like yours.  

The paint will resist fading a lot longer if you have 3M's window film installed on the storm door glass.  It comes in several grades, but even the least noticeable product they offer cuts the UV by something like 95 or 99%. 

John
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#18
  Re: What's the proper way to sand and paint a steel front door? by Dumb_Polack (Hi,  For the past...)
I primed with Rusoleum metal primer.  The problem is that my steel door (I suppose it was a builders special) had plastic trim around the glass opening.  The plastic deteriorated and I replaced it with wood.

The primer and the paint have stood up well on the steel portions but have flaked on the wood portions. 

But if it is an all steel door, the Rustoleum works fine.  I would I would top coat with the Rustoleum enamel. 

I painted the steel baseboard heat covers with latex paint.  It developed rust spots.  Lately I have been using Rustoleum and the finish is holding up  well.

Make sure you allow the top coat to dry completely  before closing the door.  Or use PPG's Breakthrough! 250 (not Breakthrough! 50) which dries incredibly fast. 

Only pour out what you are going to use immediately.  Use a paint filter to return excess to the can.  It can skin over in less than an hour.  It is ready to use within 3 hours.  Recoat is about 30 minutes.  It is hard to find though.
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#19
  Re: What's the proper way to sand and paint a steel front door? by Dumb_Polack (Hi,  For the past...)
All good advice above. I too have had good results with Rustoleum products. However, my doors don't get direct sun. As far as application method, I have gotten good results using a small foam roller. Using the paint straight out of the can, this method does leave a slight orange peel texture which I don't mind. Adding a bit of Penetrol might make it level out better.
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#20
  Re: What's the proper way to sand and paint a steel front door? by Dumb_Polack (Hi,  For the past...)
I always paint with a brush. My theory is that you are trying to make a steel door look like wood, and if you brush it the same directions of the grain in a wood door, it will start to resemble one.
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