Ways to successfully sanding doors

Most of us don’t put door sanding high on our list of favorite household chores. However, it is a process that, when done correctly, brings significant effects in the appearance of the door. Grinding doors is a perfect example of how key to success is proper preparation.

First of all, we need the right tools to grind the door. The list of essentials includes: dust mask, eye protection, vacuum cleaner or broom and dustpan, grinder or sanding block, sandpaper of different grit, damp cloth, masking tape (if leaving the hardware in place) and screwdriver (if removing the door or hardware ).

Five steps to a smooth finish

1. Prepare the room

Sanding the door generates a lot of dust, so it is recommended to remove the door and move the work outside. If you are unable to remove the door, protect the area around the door with a dust sheet and wear a dust mask and eye protection.

2. Prepare the door

If you leave the door hinged, you need a support to prevent it from moving during operation. Using a screwdriver, remove any fittings, such as door handles, before starting work. If this is not possible, protect the fittings against scratches and dust with masking tape.

3. Start with flat surfaces

Always start sanding from the flat areas of the door. If the doors have panels with decorative elements, sand these areas separately.

4. Take care of the details

After the flat areas, it was time to sand any ornaments or details on the doors; these corners, edges and profiles require a precise approach.

5. Cleaning

After you’ve searched the entire door, make sure you haven’t missed any places. First, remove the dust with a soft brush or vacuum cleaner and wipe it with a damp cloth.

Choosing the right method and materials

door sanding

The most important decision we have to make is choosing the right grit of sandpaper. Three categories are commonly used: coarse, medium and fine. For a door in poor condition with several coats of old, peeling paint, start with a coarse grit paper, then use medium and fine grit paper. For doors with less paint or varnish to remove, medium sandpaper followed by fine sandpaper should be sufficient.

The choice between hand sanding and sanding with a sander depends on the circumstances. Hand sanding can be laborious and time consuming on large surfaces, but it is quieter, less messy, and produces a better final finish on the last pass. The sander is great for quickly sanding flat parts of doors, but may not be the best for tight corners, edges or details. For this reason, a mixed approach is recommended to achieve the best possible finish.

Can I sand uPVC doors in preparation for painting?

uPVC doors can be changed with a special paint. When you sand uPVC, the goal is to “roughen” the surface, which helps the paint adhere. In this case, sandpaper with a higher grit is ideal and you do not need to use a lot of force. uPVC doors often have rounded edges, so a sanding sponge is useful to mold to the shape of the door, making work easier.

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