How Much Does It Cost to Paint a Garage Door? (2023)

Cost to Paint Garage Door

Photo: istockphoto.com

Highlights

  • The typical cost to paint a garage door is $120 to $500, while the national average cost is $300.
  • The most common factors that influence the cost of painting a garage door include the type and size of door, the cost of labor, the preparation work required, the type of paint used, and any additional repairs the door requires.
  • Painting a garage door is important when the existing paint is fading, chalking, or cracking or is an outdated color.
  • A handy homeowner may be able to paint their garage door if they have the patience, materials, and expertise needed; however, it can be a more complicated process than expected and consume more time than anticipated unless left to a professional.

Garage doors confidently show off their prominent real estate space on a house and are likely one of the first things to catch the attention of homeowners and potential buyers alike. So, when a garage door is desperately in need of a fresh coat of paint, homeowners can take comfort in knowing that it’s a rather low-cost project. According to Angi, the cost to paint a garage door averages from $120 to $500, with most homeowners spending about $300. The payoff is an attractive and finished look that can boost a home’s curb appeal.

The cost to paint a garage door varies based on the type and size of the door, the number of doors needing to be painted, any necessary repairs, and several other factors. Professional garage door painters may bid the job by type of door or by square foot, and additional costs may be added if there is significant rust or extra prep work required. Still, in most cases garage door repainting cost is cheaper than garage door replacement cost.

Cost to Paint Garage Door

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Factors in Calculating the Cost to Paint a Garage Door

A worn-out paint job doesn’t mean you need a new garage door—just a little TLC. Garage door paint prices are primarily calculated in one of two ways: by type or by size of door. From there, the total price varies based on the type of paint selected and the labor rate. These four factors make up the majority of the average $300 cost to paint a garage door.

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Garage Door Type

Calculating the cost to paint a garage door based on type means basing the cost on the number of cars that fit inside the garage. It’s closely related to estimating based on the overall size of the garage door, but it’s an easier way to reference the expected cost. The range of costs varies depending on the door material and amount of prep work needed before painting. Additionally, there are variations in garage door size within each type.

Garage Door Size

Calculating the cost to repaint a garage door by square foot is another common method that painting pros use to provide an estimate. It’s usually more accurate than calculating based on type, since standard garage doors can vary in width from 7 to 10 feet and in height from 7 to 8 feet. Knowing the total square footage will help homeowners and painters anticipate how much garage door paint is required to complete the job. Painting estimates by square foot average between $1 and $4; from there, the total costs can be determined for different-sized garage doors:

Garage Door Size Average Cost (Materials and Labor)
72 square feet $80 to $290
112 square feet $120 to $500
184 square feet $190 to $740

Paint Type

Not all paints are created equal. It’s important for homeowners to understand what material their garage door is made of in order to choose the correct type of exterior paint. Metal garage door paint, faux wood garage door paint, wooden garage door paint, and even fiberglass or aluminum garage door paint have different elements to ensure a strong bond and a weather-resistant lifespan.

Exterior garage door paint is usually made of acrylic latex, latex, or an oil base. Paint professionals will have garage door paint ideas to help homeowners with the decision-making process, including offering advice about some of the best one-coat paints and the best places to buy paint. Oil-based paints are a common choice, since they naturally have water-resistant properties. However, they take longer to dry than water-based paints.

Acrylic and latex paints make up most water-based paints, but they often need more than one coat for a thorough cover. This is especially true if a black garage door is being painted a lighter color. Homeowners will want to factor in the number of coats of paint they’ll need when budgeting for garage door painting costs.

Type of Paint Average Cost (Materials Only)
Oil-based $20 to $60 per gallon
Water-based $20 to $50 per gallon

Labor

Part of the cost to paint a garage door is for labor. The hourly rate varies significantly depending on geographic location and current market demand. An average of $25 to $100 per hour for labor is fairly typical, though. Most painting projects are relatively easy to tackle, so it could take as little as 2 hours to paint a garage door. However, if multiple garage doors need painting, or there is significant rust or prep work that needs to be handled, it can take up to 8 hours to complete. The surest way for a homeowner to get an accurate estimate is to have the paint professional inspect the garage doors in person.

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Additional Costs and Considerations

For homeowners wondering “how much to paint garage doors?” there are several more factors to consider. Each paint job will require prep work—some more than others. The more prep work, the higher the cost. It’s also possible that the garage door will need some repairs first, which will also increase the final price. These repairs could be as simple as oiling the rollers and bearings or as complicated as replacing broken glass or panels. Alternatively, homeowners might just want the entire garage painted if it was left unfinished or is an unsightly color. The additional costs below detail possible factors that will raise the overall cost to paint a garage door.

Prep Work

Knowing how to paint a garage door involves more steps than homeowners might expect. Any paint job requires a little prep work to protect surrounding surfaces from accidental paint swipes and spills. This may seem time-consuming, but it’s worth it in the long run to ensure the paint bonds well to the surface. Painters will tape off areas around the windows and any exposed hardware, then protect all four sides around the garage doors. This could be as simple as painter’s tape or include protective plastic or drop cloths.

The garage door will also need to be cleaned first, which could be as simple as power-washing it. However, any sanding or scraping of existing paint will dramatically increase the cost of painting, since it takes much more time to complete before drying, cleaning, and priming the door for the paint.

Some metal garage doors may have rust spots on them that will need to be addressed before a fresh coat of paint is added. The rust must be removed first and any holes filled in before the door can be prepped for priming and painting. To determine how much prep work is needed and to get an accurate quote, homeowners will want to have the paint pro do an on-site inspection.

Garage Door Repairs

Most garage door repair costs can range from as little as $80 to as much as $650, but they’re worth doing to get that giant door in working order. It’s best to complete any major repairs before repainting the door to avoid scratching the freshly applied paint. This is especially important if an entire panel needs to be replaced due to damage that can’t be easily repaired. Keeping on top of garage door maintenance can help reduce more costly repairs down the road.

Replacing a garage door panel could cost between $400 and $2,400. If the panel is merely dented thanks to an overeager driver, repairing the panel will likely cost around $100 to $300. These costs are highly dependent on the material of the garage door. Metal doors are common and easy to replace, while wood and composite doors are more difficult to replace and cost much more.

This is also the time for homeowners to decide if they want to change any hardware or add an automatic garage door opener if they don’t already have one.

Garage Door Material Average Repair Cost (Materials and Labor)
Aluminum $150 to $400
Composite $250 to $700
Fiberglass $150 to $500
Glass $250 to $1,000
Steel $100 to $350
Wood $250 to $1,000

Whole-Garage Painting

If the unfinished drywall in the garage has become an eyesore, homeowners might prefer to have a paint professional bid on painting the entire garage—inside or outside. It may cost more overall, but painters may offer homeowners a discount for the volume of work to be done. The average cost to paint a garage ranges from $2 to $6 per square foot, which is a little higher than the cost to paint a house. The hourly rate for labor is still going to be $25 to $100.

Cost to Paint a Garage Door by Type of Door

The type of garage door affects how much it will cost to paint it. In this case, the type of door corresponds to the number of cars that the garage holds (usually one to three cars). Each type of door is a different size and square footage, with the largest type of door costing the most to paint. The average cost to paint a garage door is $1 to $4 per square foot.

Type of Garage Door Average Cost (Materials and Labor)
1-car garage $80 to $290
2-car garage $120 to $500
3-car garage $190 to $740

1-Car Garage

A 1-car garage door is the cheapest to paint, since it’s the smallest. These doors are typically 7 to 10 feet wide and 7 to 8 feet high, which equals about 49 to 80 square feet of surface area to paint. The average cost is about $80 to $290.

2-Car Garage

Many homes have a 2-car garage that can fit two small cars or one SUV alongside storage areas. These doors also have a range of sizes: 16 to 18 feet wide by 7 to 8 feet high. The surface area of double doors comes in between 112 and 144 square feet. The average cost to paint is around $120 to $500.

3-Car Garage

A 3-car garage door can be customized to a number of different sizes, but it could also be split into one double and one single door. These typically average about 200 square feet and cost between $190 and $740 to paint. Alternatively, an RV or other custom door could be as high as 10 or 14 feet, which will dramatically increase the cost to paint it. These types of doors will require a custom quote.

Do I need to paint my garage door?

Spending hard-earned money on repairs and upkeep isn’t something that’s going to leave a forever memory, but it’s a necessary part of home ownership. And as a homeowner contemplates a garage door that’s seen better days, they may be wondering if it’s worth repainting and what the best paint for garage doors might be.

It’s important to note that most aluminum and steel garage doors are powder-coated at the factory, which is the longest-lasting method for painting a garage door. Still, a homeowner may want to paint over the door with a new color. No matter if the homeowner is painting an aluminum garage door or painting a fiberglass garage door, there are several benefits to getting that garage door painted this year.

Faded Color

Garage door paint colors are prone to UV damage just like any other paint colors, though a powder-coated door will resist fading the longest. But if that black door is looking a little more navy, it’s time to call a paint pro. Freshening up a paint coat is a low-cost way to make the overall appearance of a house look fabulous again. Exterior house painting never fails to improve a home’s value and attractiveness to potential buyers.

Chalking Paint

Chalking paint may not be a familiar term to most homeowners, but it’s easily recognizable. It’s what happens when the paint binder has broken down due to weathering. Patches of a fine white powder appear on the surface and will transfer to hands, clothes, or anything else that touches it. Chalking paint usually happens when a poor-quality paint has been exposed to significant sunlight and foul weather or when the surface hasn’t been properly primed and sealed.

Cracking Paint

Another reason to paint a garage door is cracking paint. This is a common problem when moisture breaks through the barrier of the paint excessively or when the surface wasn’t properly prepared for the paint and the bond has failed. Most often, this happens with low-quality paint or improper painting techniques (for example, adding a latex paint over an oil-based paint or painting a coat that’s too thin).

Outdated Color

While neutrals always seem to stay in style, some exterior paint colors can’t do the same. If a pop of color was just right when a homeowner moved in years ago, a prospective buyer may prefer to see a more complementary color instead. Keeping a house and garage in good condition that’s appealing to the average home buyer is helpful so homeowners can be ready to sell when it’s time.

Cost to Paint Garage Door

Photo: istockphoto.com

Painting a Garage Door: DIY vs. Hiring a Professional 

Painting a garage door is certainly one of the easier DIY jobs around the house; however, it’s not a task to be taken lightly. It won’t require permits or licenses to complete, but it may take more time and preparation than most homeowners expect. There’s also the risk of choosing the wrong paint for the type of garage door. That could lead to an accelerated breakdown of paint on the door in a much shorter time than a professional job would last—costing more in the long run.

On their own, homeowners can tackle cleaning off the garage door or deciding on a paint color they prefer, but the best time and money saver is to let a professional garage door painter get the job done right the first time. This is especially true if there are rust spots to be repaired or lots of hardware and glass to be protected. Painters will know which kind of paint to recommend based on the climate, door material, and homeowner’s interests. And they’ll have all the materials and equipment needed to paint the door in a day or less.

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How to Save Money on the Cost to Paint a Garage Door

Though it’s a relatively inexpensive project, painting a garage door still comes with a price tag. And it never hurts to find one or two ways to save a few dollars for a more fun expense. Consider these tips for saving money on the cost to paint a garage door.

  • Shop around. Don’t hesitate to speak with several professionals to get a quote that suits your budget, timing, and expectations of quality.
  • Ask for an itemized estimate. Know exactly what steps are or aren’t included in the estimate so you can make the best decision for your budget.
  • Check local hardware or paint stores. Sometimes local stores have partially used paint that they’ll heavily discount for a new customer.
  • Plan ahead. Many stores put paint on sale a week before a holiday weekend, which can be helpful if you know what paint you need to buy.
  • Do some prep work. Clean and dry your garage door, sand off the old paint, and make sure any adjacent trees or bushes are trimmed. Doing any prep work you can will reduce the labor costs.
  • Buy high-quality paint. This might cost more up front, but it will save money over time, since the paint job will last longer.
  • Ask about discounts. Always ask a business if special discounts are offered for senior citizens, military personnel, or first responders. And check the company’s website and social media for any sales.

Questions to Ask About Painting a Garage Door

Homeowners who ask lots of questions will feel more confident about hiring a professional. And doing so will help ensure the scope of work will match the quote, since both parties will be on the same page. There are several questions homeowners can ask while calling to obtain a quote for garage door painting costs.

  • How long have you been in business?
  • How many garages have you painted?
  • Can you provide a list of references?
  • What types of garage doors are you most comfortable painting?
  • Do you offer a free inspection and quote?
  • Can you provide an itemized quote and invoice?
  • Who will be my main point of contact?
  • What kind of paint do you recommend for my garage door?
  • Can I buy my own paint?
  • What can you do about the rust spots on my garage door?
  • What kind of prep work do you expect to have to do?
  • If I clean the door and tape off the windows, will that reduce the overall cost?
  • How long will it take to paint my garage door?
  • Do you offer at least a 2-year warranty on your work?

FAQs

Painting a garage door is a fairly straightforward process, though the prep work and any needed repairs may complicate the project initially. Homeowners can feel confident about the job when they have accurate information ahead of time. These frequently asked questions and answers can fill in any remaining bits of information they need.

Q. How much paint do you need to paint a garage door?

The amount of paint required depends on the size of the door, the color of the door and of the new paint, and the type of paint. Oil-based paints tend to need only one coat, but they aren’t ideal for all materials. Water-based paints often need more than one coat, especially if a light color is being painted over a dark color. On average, 1 gallon of paint can cover about 400 square feet, which means it should be able to do a 2- or even 3-car garage.

Q. How many hours does it take to paint a garage door?

There are several factors that affect how long it takes to paint a garage door. The painting process typically takes 2 to 8 hours, with more time required for multiple coats of paint or multiple doors. If repairs or lots of prep work is needed before painting, the job could extend beyond a day. Homeowners may also want to factor in the time for the paint to dry, which could take 8 to 12 hours. It’s best for homeowners to plan on the project taking a couple of days, including drying time.

Q. What kind of paint should you use on a garage door?

Paint professionals are familiar with the best kind of paint for garage doors based on the door material. For example, an aluminum door works well with an exterior acrylic paint, while a steel door requires a latex or oil-based paint. An exterior latex paint will be the best choice for a vinyl or wood garage door.

Q. Do you need primer to paint a garage door?

Using a primer before painting a garage door is a best practice that will pay off. For instance, wood typically adheres to new paint best when a primer is applied first. And if any rust spots are present on a steel door, then an anti-rust primer is ideal for helping slow the rusting process going forward.

Sources: Angi, HomeAdvisor (1 and 2)

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