How to Refinish an Exterior Wood Door

Questions and answers relating to houses built in the 1800s and before.

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kecleveland
Posts: 92
Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2007 12:12 pm
Location: Cromwell, CT

How to Refinish an Exterior Wood Door

Post by kecleveland »

A few years back I stripped the paint off my old front door, and polyurethaned it to expose the natural grain and color of the wood. Based on a recommendation I used a water based polyurethane. This door is very old (possibly original), and located on the east side of my house. In just a year most of the polyurethane was baked off from sun exposure. Polyurethane was obviously the wrong choice, and this summer I will be refinishing the door. Another recommendation I had was to use epoxy to soak into the wood, and then coat with oil-based polyurethane. Does anyone have any advice on a type of finish with UV resistance? Perhaps Sikkens Cetol...I dunno!
Dutch Colonial, ca 1780

ChrisF
Posts: 269
Joined: Thu Jul 07, 2005 3:07 pm

Re: How to Refinish an Exterior Wood Door

Post by ChrisF »

You might want to consider a spar varnish...they're meant for exterior use. The higher volume of oil in spar varnish gives it more flexibility, so it should be able to deal with the elements better.

Don M
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Joined: Mon Dec 08, 2003 11:35 am
Location: Boiling Springs, PA

Re: How to Refinish an Exterior Wood Door

Post by Don M »

Yes, if spar varnish holds up on boats it ought to stand up to weather on your door. One question, do you have a storm door over your wood door? If so the intense heat buildup may also contribute to the baking of your finish.
1840 Limestone Farmhouse
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kecleveland
Posts: 92
Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2007 12:12 pm
Location: Cromwell, CT

Re: How to Refinish an Exterior Wood Door

Post by kecleveland »

I don't have a storm door. I think I'm going to use Epifanes spar varnish.
Dutch Colonial, ca 1780

cawkercitykid
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Oct 05, 2013 12:45 pm

Re: How to Refinish an Exterior Wood Door

Post by cawkercitykid »

Yes, Spar Varnish is the correct coating to use. However, if the door gets direct sunlight, or gets the occasional rain, you will need to refresh it every year. It is a lot easier to thuch it up with a single coat each spring than it is to wait five or six years and have a real mess on your hands and have to strip it back down to the wood.

JoeRomero
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Location: 20442B Carrey Road, Walnut, CA 91789
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Re: How to Refinish an Exterior Wood Door

Post by JoeRomero »

Spar Varnish is good for coating the doors. You properly varnish the door every year so that the door never fade its shine and also it will not get destroyed by insects or rain and sunlight.

ttpainting
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Joined: Tue Dec 10, 2013 5:20 am

Re: How to Refinish an Exterior Wood Door

Post by ttpainting »

According to my point of view, you should contact to professional contractors. They will provide you the best wooden door refinishing service and will suggest you proper guidelines.

SkipW
Posts: 571
Joined: Fri Jul 25, 2008 7:25 am
Location: Midcoast Maine

Re: How to Refinish an Exterior Wood Door

Post by SkipW »

I recently did a wooden door refinishing project for a client and used Epiphanes "Rapid Clear" for the first five coats.

It goes on super easily and you don't have to worry as much as you would with varnish that will be a top coat. On top of that, I used Epiphanes "Woodfinish Plus" for three coats and the project turned out beautifully.

This project was on a front door and side lites/over lites that faced East on a slightly covered porch in Maine. Weather had taken it's toll and the door and surround are now beautiful and protected from the weather.

You must refinish or touch up at least every two years though. As mentioned, it's much better than a total refinish from neglect!
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James
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Location: Rural Eastern North Carolina

Re: How to Refinish an Exterior Wood Door

Post by James »

A marine or spar varnish is definitely what you will need for any exterior project.
Locust Quarter, circa 1770 Georgian Gambrel roofed cottage.

harlonblock
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Re: How to Refinish an Exterior Wood Door

Post by harlonblock »

When refinishing an exterior wood door it should be first removed from its hinges and placed on a well raised flat area. Sand the door to make the wood clear and smooth. A bristle paint brush should be now used to apply a finish on the wood to make it look shiny and attractive. When the door has dried return it back to its original position.

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