Thinking about refinishing old flat panel doors? Check out this DIY project where I took old flat panel doors and completely refinished them!

For those who haven’t been following along, I have been working on giving my boring laundry room a makeover. One of the items on my list was to refinish two old flat panel doors in there, and that includes their ugly brass hardware.

Now before you go ripping your doors off please note that if you do not need to freshen up your hardware then instead of taking the hinges off, just remove the pin that joins the hinges. This way you won’t have to go through the hassel of realigning the hinges, you will only need to line up the hinge holes and slip the pin in.

Ok, lets begin.1) I took the door off and moved it to the shop and then removed all the brass hardware, which was in pretty rough shape.

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2) So that they could be drying, I took the hardware outside and strung it on my fence with some old bailing wire I found. Getting out my Rust-oleum oil rubbed bronze spray paint (amazing stuff!) I gave all the pieces a good coating then left them to hang out for a while.

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Now before I go on let me explain my thought process. I had done some research online on how to refinish flat panel doors. My doors are not hollow core, but actually solid. So after all my research I didn’t see any reason why I couldn’t sand them down a bit and just put a darker stain on them. So. That’s what I did.

3) Sanded it down

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4) Put dark stain on and let it sit for 30 mins.
5) Wiped off the stain….and nothing!
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Ok door. Round 1 to you.

I have no idea where it went wrong or what, if anything, I could have done to make the stain stick. Buuuut I didn’t really sweat it too much because really….how many things go smoothly and according to the plan?

6) So I gave the door another light sanding then went to my favorite home away from home (Home Depot) and bought some Chocolate Swirl Behr paint that I thought would look nice.

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And sure enough! It looks nice.
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7) I hung the door and then put the handle back on. Yep, spray paint people! Crazy huh?
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Now. That was the complicated way. Next I moved on to the second door and I thought I would try and get smart. Removing the knob and hinges kinda sucked, so I thought this time I would paint the door with them on and tape off the section of the door around the hardware to spray paint it.

1) I painted the door and let it dry.

2) When it came time to paint the hardware I noticed a paper plate on my shop floor. Hmmm. That got me thinking, and instead of using newspaper and tape I loosen the set screws in the door knob so that it would move up and down a little bit. Then I made a slit in the plate and slipped it under the knob. That probably makes no sense. : ) Please see photo below.

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This is from the top view. You can see the slit in the plate on the left.

3) Next I used my rustoleum oil rubbed bronze spray paint again until the knob was coated.

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Note: If you use this method, make sure you let it completely dry before trying to remove the plate or you will just end up smearing the excess paint all over your freshly painted door.

4) Now I moved to the hinges. These suckers were easy. I just grabbed a thin piece (but not too thin) of spare cardboard. Held it in place and sprayed.

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Make sure the hinge is extended like the above photo. Also don’t spray too much where it drip or it will get on the door once you remove the cardboard.

Wilker Don’t: I sprayed the hinges just like the above photo shows. After everything was dried I brought the door back in and hung it in place. Then noticed there were spots on the hinge where the brass was still showing. See the hinges are resting at a 45 degree angle when the door is closed, so when I sprayed the hinge fully extended, the other side of the pivoting portion was not painted. Lesson? After you paint the hinges extended like above, rotate it to a 45 degree angle and get the spots that come out.

5) After everything is dried, hang the door back in place then stand back and admire. ; )
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Total Time: 3 hours
Total Cost: $28

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