Before & After: Sprucing Up Our Front Door with New Hardware

October 18, 2011 | by Ethan (email) |

In the words of Captain Obvious, “The way into a home is through the front door,” and everyday Jocie and I were greeted by a dinged up, ugly yellow front door. To top it off, whoever painted the door didn’t put in much effort and it shows. While we’d love to replace our front door, the storm door, and everything else with a sloppy paint job, we’re not prepared to shell out the money for that. So we decided to take our lemons and make our front door look like new again.

I offer exhibit A. Disregard the fake, dress-up pearls in the background. Oh, and we’re teaching Izzie how to spell so that’s why our last name is on the front door in bright letters.

Here’s exhibit B. Notice the junky paint job.

Repainting the Front Door

This project only took a few hours to complete, and that includes drying time. Jocie and I started by removing all the current hardware- the deadbolt, door knob, knocker, house numbers and peephole. If you’re following along, keep everything well organized and grouped together. We reused most of the hardware, and it would have been impossible if we’d have just tossed everything in a bag.

Everything came off as expected. Sometimes deadbolts can be tricky because you need the key to access the screws. The peephole had a pair of grooves for unscrewing it and I found that my pry bar worked well.

Here’s a picture with the knocker removed.

Next, we spent some time sanding everything to smooth out imperfections and clean up the old hardware.

We’ve had a great experience with Kwikset SmartKey, and we decided to buy a new Kwikset deadbolt and door knob with that feature. We chose to reuse the old knocker, peephole and house numbers to save a few bucks. I’m glad we did because after a quick paint job those items look fantastic! You like how we used raison boxes for painting everything?

Here’s how things looked after Jocie put on a few coats of spray paint.

We painted the door a light gray color. It’s nothing dramatic, but it looks fresh and clean.

Lastly, we installed the newly painted hardware and the new deadbolt and lever.

I think it looks really good. In fact, it looks so good that repainting the storm door and door frame may be next on the list. That swirl is our house numbers. I just don’t think we’re at the point in our relationship where I’m ready to share that.

17 Responses
  1. Eek565 says:

    It looks so crisp an clean! Did the HOA rules prevent you from painting your door a bright red or blue? I have to admit I would like to be THAT neighbor with the crazy door.

    • Joe says:

      I am not sure about a bright red door on a brick house, wouldn’t stand out. Black would probably look pretty good though.

    • Ethan says:

      We actually didn’t check with our HOA (shh….) because it wasn’t a dramatic shift, and we chose this color because we had some of it lying around. I think a dark color like Joe suggested would have been nice too.

  2. Joe says:

    What kind of paint did you use on the knocker and numbers? It looks to match the other hardware pretty well.

    Also, just an FYI… you can undo the swirl effect, some criminals have been caught that way (lets just leave it at that… the type of pictures they were in make it much worse).

    • Ethan says:

      We used a Rustoleum spray paint. I think it was a metallic and that’s why it sort of “shimmers”. Thanks for the tip about the swirl effect. I actually did it a different way so hopefully that sufficiently stumps all the evil-masterminds that read OPC!

  3. paintergal says:

    Doesn’t paint just clean up everything? Looks great.
    Color is such a personal choice. I would have chosen a more fun color, but that is not for everyone.

  4. Erin M says:

    Looks great! What kind of paint did you use for your hardware?

  5. MissFixIt says:

    That looks really great Ethan. I just installed the other day 1 out of the 2 Kwikset knobs I was sent by you through your rewards center. They were very easy to install! Also much needed as the side door I installed it on was the builders handle set so it was very badly tarnished brass. It was also very difficult to lock from the inside (push in button style).

  6. JustME says:

    The door and hardware look new Ethan. Great job!

  7. If you were doing a black door, what color hardware? Silver (brushed) or brass?

  8. Mark says:

    For your consideration:

    A mosaic filter works much better. Blotting it out entirely with a solid color is the best.

  9. Icarus says:

    the door looks great. Is the idea to replace the door completely in the far off future?

    • Ethan says:

      We’re pretty pleased with how this turned out so I doubt we’ll replace the door as long as it looks good. Who knows how things will go w/ two small kids.

  10. Laura says:

    Looks great! I just installed the same Kwikset hardware on all the doors in my home… and I hate to point this out, but you’ve installed the lever upside down 😉

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