Painting a steel exterior door

Back to this project again! I delayed doing it.
I got some advice from my mom and it seems very sensible to me. She says she's done this many times and the trick is a fine grade sand paper then a small thin brush to apply the paint. Smaller the better as wont show brush marks. No spray paint.
She uses Latex but has no particular brand other than she's partial to Sherman Williams for exterior (Thompson's water seal for wood things).
Any other tips? I do not plan to remove the door to do this. I do plan in 2 years or so to have the door and frame removed and replaced with something nicer (It's the cheapest all white steel prehung done by renters when they kicked out the nice wood one I had).
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Mom knows best. Next question!
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"Oren" wrote

Grin, as I plan to color match the front brick paint to the door, do you know if there is a best pick for an exterior paint that will let me do a metal door and brick with the same cans? That way I can get 3 gallons of same dye lot.
The brick was painted long ago so dont even think about blasting it clean and besides, wouldnt match the siding color well (an almond with red brick? eek!). It;s a faded dark brown now on the bricks and a nice almond vinyl siding. All exterior trimwork is dark brown. Door in it's pristine white sticks out like a sore thumb.
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cshenk wrote:

The trick's really in the primer. Find a real paint store and tell them what you need to do--they'll tell you what you need in order to do it.
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--John
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cshenk wrote:

Remove door.
Take to auto paint shop.
Auto paint is designed for "outside."
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"HeyBub" wrote

Grin, and such look very nice but cost as much as a new door in this area!
The frame is also white and i'm not about to take out the frame too. Best solution this time is a temp fix until we can afford to replace the entire module of screen and door plus frame with something really nice.
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A temp fix would be to use a starving artist. Find one with air brush skills and abilities. Paint a mural on the door.
grin
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"Oren" wrote

Hehehe, actually near us is a fellow who's garage door always makes us smile. It's got a mural of his house in it's dream state with the perfect flowers etc. Across from him is a fellow with a mural on his garage, that shows the butt end of a car and a garage inside.
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I've painted several exterior metal doors recently -- the ocean air here pretty quickly attacks any exposed metal. I use emory paper rather than sandpaper on the rust spots -- don't know why I pick emory, just always have. Then I brush on a metal primer -- typically Rust-o-Leum rusty metal primer. Then brush on the finish coat. I use latex. May take several coats to cover well. Oh, and be sure and mask off the hardware since you're not removing the door. HTH
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"The Streets" wrote

Ok, fine grade stuff. We have some for finishing off wood projects (I've got several grades, Husband's hobby is finishing off old furniture).

Yes, forgot to mention that coat before the paint.

Yup! Thanks! I know it would look nicer with a powder coating but the expense here is about that of replacing the door. Other than color and no peep hole, there's nothing wrong with this door.
We are 25K in repairs here and those trailing cosmetic things such as a perfectly functional door, have to wait if we can't make a suitable fix ourselves.
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It's very easy to remove the pins and lay the door flat on saw horses, much less chance of sags, drips, plus easier on the painter.
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I'd remove it and lay it flat, but that's just me. Last time I did this, I temporarily replaced the door with a piece of 3/4" plywood which I screwed in place. There's always a use for a nice hunk of plywood later. If not, it just feels good to have one. :-)
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cshenk wrote:

Use a roller with a minimum nap, not a brush.
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I did this a couple of years ago. A Stanley steel exterior door that had been in place for 10+ years. I stripped it in place and got it nice and clean down to bare metal, removing even the factory primer. Exterior side only. Then I took it down (put some wedges under it to carry the weight and pulled the pins) and took it into the garage where I kept it standing upright. I wiped it down with paint thinner and got it very clean. As I recall I didn't prime it but used several coats of good quality satin finish canned spray paint (off white). It came out very nice.
For one day there was no front door and since there is no storm door I had a plywood sheet cut to size and stood it in the opening, locking it into place with a few sliding pin latches. I made a few little holes to accept them.
Replacing the door was very little trouble. I thought it would be worse. I just stood the door on some supports--whatever was handy--which I played around with a bit until the height was exactly right and I could slide the door into position with hinge parts aligning and I pushed the pins back down; gave them each a tap of a hammer and it was done.
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