How To Paint A Roll Up Garage Door [9 Simple Steps]

When it's time to update the exterior of your home, the garage door can be one of the first things to tackle. Why? Because it's one of the first things you see when looking at a home. But how do you go about painting your typical roll-up garage door? We've put together the best steps for doing so. 

If you are painting your roll-up garage door for the first time, here are steps that you can follow to do get it done:

  1. Gather all of your materials outside
  2. Clean the garage door
  3. Repair damaged areas
  4. Apply painter's tape to the door
  5. Disengage the electric opening mechanism
  6. Prime the garage door
  7. Paint the garage door
  8. Remove the painter's tape

Before painting your garage door, it's important to know the type and color of paint that you will use. Will you use oil-based paint or latex paint? Do you want a matte finish or a semi-gloss finish? Continue reading to learn more about painting your garage door and deciding on the right paint.

White two-story house features a black roof and a roll up black garage door, How To Paint A Roll Up Garage Door [9 Simple Steps]

Steps To Paint A Roll Up Garage Door

Painting the garage door

Before doing anything, make sure to check the weather a couple of days beforehand to make sure that it will be warm enough to paint the garage door. The ideal temperature will be between 55 and 78 degrees. You also want to make sure that there are no expectations of rain for the next 3 to 5 days while the paint dries.

Things you'll need for your project:

  • Exterior primer
  • All-purpose cleaner
  • A ladder or step stool
  • Fine-grit sandpaper
  • Water hose
  • Dust mask
  • Cleaning cloths or sponges
  • Tarps or drop cloths
  • Painter's tape
  • Exterior paint
  • 8-inch paint roller

1. Gather all of your materials outside

Gather all of your painting tools and materials and place them outside on the side of the garage door. Next, take your drop cloths and place them on the ground starting at the bottom of the garage door throughout its length.

You may also want to place the drop cloths over any adjacent landscaping or pavement to make sure that it stays free of paint sprays and splatters. Next, make sure the garage door is closed completely before doing anything.

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2. Clean the garage door

For this step, you can use a power washer or do it manually. A power washer will help you perform this task more efficiently, however. During this step, you'll want to remove any dirt, rust, and grime away from the garage door. Take an all-purpose cleaner and pour it into a bucket of warm water. Next, take your cleaning cloths or sponge and go over the garage door, wiping away any visible dirt or grime.

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If you find any areas where the paint has rusted or chipped, scrub these away with your wire brush or with a putty knife. After you have cleaned the door, use your garden hose to rinse it off completely.

Depending on the material that your door is made of, you'll need to let it dry before applying the paint. If it is made of wood, you may want to wait 24 to 48 hours for it to dry completely. If it is made of metal or fiberglass, you can dry it manually with dry cloths.

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3. Repair damaged areas

If you have any large dents, peeling paint, or scratches on your garage door that you want to cover up now is the time to repair them. To do this, you'll need to purchase a filler for the specific material that the door's made of.

For example, if you have a wooden garage door, you'll need to purchase a wood filler. You can buy filler for wood, fiberglass, and metal doors online for under $10. After you apply your filler, allow it to dry for the recommended drying time and then sand the area down using 180- or 220-grit sandpaper block.

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4. Apply painter's tape to the door

After the garage has been cleaned and sanded, you can now apply your painter's tape. Use the painter's tape to mask off any locks, handles, windows, or ornamental decorations on the garage door that you don't want to paint.

You'll also want to cover any trim on the garage door as well. Be sure to check the bottom of the door to ensure that the drop cloth does not have any gaps where the paint can drip onto your driveway. It's best to tape it down with the painter's tape to be on the safe side.

5. Disengage the electric opening mechanism

Locate the mechanism on the side of your garage and disengage it so that you can manually raise and lower your garage door. You don't want to stoop while painting it as it can lead to back pain be the following day. If you aren't sure how to disengage this mechanism, check your user's manual for instructions. Oftentimes it is just a switch located on the garage door opener.

6. Prime the garage door

Take your primer and pour it into your paint tray. Next, grab your paintbrush or roller and start on the left side of the garage at the top. Apply the primer to the garage door using downward strokes in a V-pattern. Try not to paint more than two feet of area at a time. When moving your ladder or stepping stool, be sure that it has steady footing so that it does not get caught up on the drop cloths beneath it.

After the first coat of primer has dried, apply one or two additional coats. Be sure to paint over any drips so that they do not dry and leave marks. Make sure to get between the "lips" of the door panels if your garage is made of wood or fiberglass. If you are painting with a roller, you will need to use a small paintbrush for this task. Also, if you are planning on painting the trim of your garage door, be sure to paint this area last.

Click here to buy exterior primer on Amazon.

7. Paint the garage door

After the primer has dried, take out your exterior paint and pour it into the paint tray. Next, grab your brush or roller, and starting on the left side of the garage, apply the paint from the top to the bottom of the door. Use the same V-pattern that you used to slowly apply the paint to the door. Be sure that you use smooth even strokes.

Allow the first coat of paint to dry for the recommended drying time, and apply 1-3 additional coats of paint as needed. After you have applied your last coat of paint, take a step back and look at your work. Go back and touch up any areas that you may have missed.

Click here to buy exterior paint on Amazon.

8. Remove the painter's tape

After the paint has dried completely, go back and slowly remove the painter's tape. Next, remove the tarps that you have placed on the driveway and the surrounding landscape. And there you have it! You just painted your garage door!

Click here to buy painter's tape on Amazon.

What are roll-up garage doors made from?

White two-story house features a black roof and a roll up black garage door, How To Paint A Roll Up Garage Door [9 Simple Steps]

Roll-up garages are typically made of aluminum or fiberglass. Some doors are covered with a wood veneer that offers a more rustic look. Knowing the material that your roll-up garage is made of will play a big role in determining the type of paint that will work best when painting it.

What type of paint to use on a metal garage door?

Water-based and oil-based acrylic paint is the most useful and durable option for painting metal garage doors. These paints have more anti-weathering and antifungal additives than interior paint and can hold up against hot and cold weather, sun damage, and scratch marks.

Click here to buy acrylic paint on Amazon.

What kind of paint do you use on a fiberglass garage door?

Both acrylic and alkyd paint can be used for fiberglass garage doors. These paints hold up well against outside weather conditions and adhere well to fiberglass specifically. You can typically find these paints in a variety of finishes and colors to suit most outdoor trim or themes.

What kind of paint do you use on a wooden garage door?

Latex paint is usually recommended for outdoor wood surfaces, as oil paints tend to showcase more flaws on wood-based garage doors. You can typically find latex paint that has a primer built into it, which may save you some time on painting your door.

Click here to buy latex paint on Amazon

Should your garage door match the front door?

This is a matter of personal preference. However, there is a general rule; it is common for the front door to match the garage door, especially if both doors face the street. Though there are scenarios where using different or contrasting colors can work.

For example, if you use the same color or alternating trim for both doors, it can still have a cohesive look to the overall view. You can also use different hues of the same color to create a more personalized look.

Wrapping Things Up

We hope that this post has provided you with the information that you were looking for on how to paint your roll-up garage door. Remember, a good paint job starts with good preparation. Be sure to take note of the material that your garage door is made of before deciding on what type of paint to use, and always use a quality primer before applying your paint.

Before you go, be sure to check out some other related posts:

Should A Garage Door Open In Or Out?

How Much Does It Cost To Paint A Garage Door?

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