Ext. SuperPaint Woes

Here are a few tips for dealing with difficult colors using Sherwin Williams Exterior SuperPaint.

For the purpose of this article I am referring to a ‘difficult color’ as any color that will not cover easily in two coats such as reds, deep greens, midnight blues, pastels etc.

General Tips: For best results with most any paint product when it comes time to paint an exterior front door, try to paint 1) early morning, 2) not in direct sunlight and 3) not in windy conditions. Keep all windows and other doors closed while you paint. This will decrease the amount of draft passing by the door. Sun and wind are the enemies. I will postpone however long I have to for optimum conditions to paint a front door. This is important, brace the door in a way that it will not move while you are painting it.

Painting front doors:
In the new home market we are required to paint front doors to match factory vinyl shutters manufactured by Norandex. You may experience a similar requirement with another manufacturer.

Some of our builders use metal factory primed steel doors and others use white shiny fiberglass entry doors. Typically most of these shutter paint colors cover fine in two coats over the dark grey factory primer except for 3 of them, Bordeux, Midnight Green and Midnight Blue (shown). Not all factory steel doors are primed the same shade of grey, some are very dark and others are pale grey.

If you were to brush Sherwin Williams Exterior Super Paint mixed in any one of the three colors shown you are likely to apply 4 or 5 coats to achieve full color depth over a pale grey or white fiberglass door. To work around this labor intensive process you can reprime the door with a dark grey flat primer (flatter the better) and apply two coats of finish. Or do like I do and mask the door off and spray it. More info here on spraying Trim and Doors.

If you decide to brush the door, another option is to get two quarts mixed up, have one quart mixed in Sherwin Williams Exterior Super Paint Flat and one in Satin or Semi-gloss. I do not recommend Exterior SuperPaint mixed in Gloss for doors. You have more working time with Satin than you do with Semi-Gloss. If the final result is semi-gloss then use satin for your first coat and semi-gloss for your 2nd and 3rd. If your final result is satin, then use flat for first coat and satin for the 2nd and maybe 3rd if needed.

Here is a TIP for applying Exterior Super Paint. Paint the edges first. If your door had defined panels such as a 6 panel style door, paint the inside of all panels completely first and use a damp rag to wipe wet paint away from any area but the panel. Take a look at the photo here for a numbered procedural method for painting a door. Then finish off the door using that method.

A TIP for painting the hinge edge is the same, paint the edge and as you move down the edge of the door, remove any paint with a wet rag that got on the face of the door.

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