How Do I Refinish My Wood Door?

How do I refinish my wood door? Steps on how to refinish wood door. First thing, you need to remove the old finish. Wash it off with soapy water first. Then use something like a Scotch Bright pad to wipe...

First thing, you need to remove the old finish. Wash it off with soapy water first. Then use something like a Scotch Bright pad to wipe it off. Make sure the door is dry, and then scour the entire door with sandpaper of about 220, which is a very fine grit. The one important thing to remember is to stay with the direction of the grain. Once you are against the grain, you are going to cause scratches. Those are very difficult to get out, especially for somebody who is not used to working with wood. Then you go through it, and make sure it is all sanded down. Then, you would to want wipe off all the old dust. Use a cheese cloth or tag cloth that you can buy at any local hardware store. You want to remove all the excess dust that you just created. If you don't do this, it is going to stay in the pores. It will inhibit the finish from getting into the door, and it won't absorb into the fibers. After that, you kind of want to check with the door company about what finish the door should have. We recommend polyurethane for the exterior side. We use a solid base. Then, put it on the door with like a china bristle brush. We don't want to use a roller because it really mats it on. It really drowns the wood. So, using the brush allows you to apply it in a fair amount. We don't want to drown it. You want to do a lot of thin coats rather than one heavy coat. So, it's good to put on a thin coat, and then, let it dry. Then, you can come back and do another thin coat. It will give you a better look and a better feel. It will be a superior product in the end.


The time it takes to refinish a door will vary greatly with the weather conditions. If it's humid or rainy weekend, it's going to take longer to dry. On the converse side, if it's very dry and very hot, it's going to dry quicker. You have got to almost work a little faster. We recommend the people start early in the morning. You don't want to be stuck at 12 o'clock at night with your front door on hinges. Depending on how may coats you want to put on and what kind of products you are using, it would be a 1-2 day process.


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