Can Fiberglass Garage Doors Be Painted?

It is possible to paint your fiberglass garage door, but it can be challenging. The reason is that these doors are quite nonporous and smooth. This means that they resist paint and primer adhesion.

How To Paint A Fiberglass Garage Door?

How To Paint A Fiberglass Garage Door

You will need these things to paint your fiberglass garage door:

  • Some three hundred grit sandpaper
  • Several heavy duty drop cloths
  • A couple of gallons of acrylics
  • A couple of nap roller covers
  • A can of acrylic latex primer
  • A roll of blue painters tape
  • A 4 inch latex paint brush
  • A bottle of dish soap
  • Acrylic latex paint
  • A palm sander
  • A water hose
  • A ruler frame
  • Some rags

If you want to spruce up your fiberglass garage door by painting, you must prepare the surface very carefully. If you don’t, your paint will quickly flake and chip away.

Note that you should always wear breathing and eye protection when working with fiberglass. Particles released during sanding can cause damage to your eyes and lungs.

Follow These Steps To Paint Your Fiberglass Garage Door

It takes a very specific application process to successfully apply paint to slick fiberglass garage doors. If you take great care, you will be able to apply primer and paint to your fiberglass garage door successfully.

Here’s how:

  1. Clean your fiberglass door very thoroughly using dish soap and water. Rinse it with a strong blast from the hose and let it dry thoroughly.
  2. Rough up the surface of the door with sandpaper. Abrade the entire surface until it is rough all over.
  3. Lift the garage door and slip the drop cloths under it to protect the surface of your garage floor and driveway. Close the door onto the drop cloths.
  4. Use painters’ tape to mask off the sections of the garage door that you do not want to be painted.
  5. Use a roller to apply primer to the garage door. While the primer is still wet, smooth it using your paintbrush.
  6. Once you’ve finished applying your primer, raise the garage door 1 foot and then wait 2 – 3 hours until the primer has dried. This is very important. If you don’t raise the door, the seams may dry shut.
  7. Use the waiting time to clean and dry your tools.
  8. Close the garage door.
  9. Use your clean, dry roller to apply your first coat of paint to the dry, lowered garage door. Apply it just as you did your initial coat of primer. Use your paintbrush to smooth the paint.
  10. Lift the door 1 foot, clean your tools and wait for the paint to dry.

Can Fiberglass Garage Doors Be Spray Painted?

If you have a fiberglass garage door, you can paint it as we’ve described, or you can paint it using spray paint. This can be quicker than painting with a roller and paintbrush.

When you spray paint, you can further speed up the job by doing your prep work by wiping the door clean using tack cloth.

Just as with rolled/brushed on latex paint, you must spray on a coat of primer before spraying on your final coats of paint.

As with rolled or brushed on paint, you will want to use painters’ tape and drop cloths to protect areas where you don’t want paint. Raise the door between coats to prevent painted seams from sticking.

What Kind Of Paint Can You Use To Paint Fiberglass?

Several different kinds of paint can be successfully used when painting fiberglass. They include:

  • Polyurethane paint
  • Epoxy resin paint
  • Polyester paint
  • Acrylic paint

A paint that matches with the kind of fiberglass you have will yield the best results. Take care not to use oil-based paints because they can cause damage to fiberglass.

Tip: Paints that are fiberglass friendly can be found in every finish.

What Is The Best Way To Paint Fiberglass?

What Is The Best Way To Paint Fiberglass

Painting with roller, brush or spray paint are all good methods. The most important thing to remember is to do good prep work, allow ample drying time and apply several light coats of paint rather than slopping on one thick one.

How To Restore A Fiberglass Door?

Fiberglass doors resist weathering much better than steel or wood doors. They also require quite a bit less maintenance because they don’t warp, rot will rust. Even so, sunlight can cause fiberglass to fade significantly.

If you have a an overhang over your fiberglass door, it can help slow down sun damage. Even so, sooner or later you may need to patch or refinish the surface of your fiberglass garage door.

Here’s how.

  1. Get your materials together. You will need all of the materials necessary for painting, plus a fiberglass repair kit consisting of a scraper, sheets of fiberglass, resin and hardener. You will also need a box cutter.
  2. Clean the surface. If there is already a finish on your door, you’ll need to remove it. Just as with any paint or refinishing job, failure to clean thoroughly will cause your finish to degrade rapidly.
  3. Sand rough spots, burrs, raised edges and the area surrounding cracks. Large areas of damage may need to be excised with a box cutter.
  4. Create patches to fit the damaged areas using sheets of fiberglass and your box cutter.
  5. Follow the instructions that come with your fiberglass repair kit to combine the hardener and resin and apply it to your patches. This video provides detailed instructions and some handy tips:
  1. Put the patches in place over damaged areas of the garage door and allow them to dry for a minimum of 24 hours.
  2. If there are small cracks in the garage door, you can fill them in with the resin/hardener mixture and allow them to dry for 24 hours.
  3. Sand down all the repaired areas to make them smooth.
  4. Dust off the sanding residue.
  5. Paint the garage door as described above.

How Hard Is It To Paint A Fiberglass Garage Door?

While it’s entirely possible to paint a fiberglass garage door, it may not be worth it to do so. These doors are not as strong as metal or wooden garage doors, and you may put a great deal of effort into repairing, refurbishing and repainting only to find that your work, and your door, fall apart fairly quickly.

When determining whether or not to repair and repaint your fiberglass garage door, be realistic about the degree of damage and the cost in time and materials needed to repair it. You may end up deciding that replacement is a better option.

If you’re looking for more painting advice, here is our guide to vinyl garage doors.

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