Spray Painting Your uPVC Doors: Everything You Need To Know…

Welcome to the colorful world of home DIY! Today, we’re exploring the intriguing question: Can you spray paint a uPVC door? Unplasticised Polyvinyl Chloride or uPVC doors have become increasingly popular due to their durability, insulation properties, and cost-effectiveness. However, their color choices often leave a lot to be desired. If you’re yearning to make a personal style statement, spray painting your uPVC door can be the way to go. This guide is your roadmap to transforming your uPVC door, breathing new life into your home’s facade. Let’s embark on this vibrant journey of customisation, one spray at a time.

Understanding uPVC Doors

Unplasticised Polyvinyl Chloride, more commonly known as uPVC, refers to a type of rigid and chemically resistant form of PVC widely used for door and window frames. uPVC doors, in particular, have surged in popularity since their introduction in the late 1970s, largely due to their robust and practical characteristics.

Originally hailed as an innovative material in the construction industry, uPVC offers an array of benefits. These doors are known for their exceptional durability, being resistant to rot, rust, and corrosion. They also offer superior insulation, helping to keep your home warm in the winter and cool in the summer, thereby contributing to energy efficiency. Moreover, they demand very little maintenance, primarily needing only a quick clean to keep them looking new.

However, no material is without its drawbacks. The aesthetics of uPVC doors have often been criticised, as they can’t replicate the charm and warmth of traditional wood. They also come in limited color options, which may not suit everyone’s taste. Furthermore, although uPVC is long-lasting, it’s not easily repairable. Damaged uPVC doors often need to be replaced completely, which can be costly. In this context, spray painting emerges as an interesting alternative to customise and refurbish your uPVC door.

To Spray or Not To Spray: Can uPVC Doors Be Painted?

The prospect of painting uPVC doors is a topic of much debate. While some argue against the idea, citing the material’s unique properties and potential damage risk, others support it as a feasible method of refurbishment and customisation.

In theory, uPVC doors can be painted. However, since uPVC is non-porous and doesn’t naturally bond with paint, it’s essential to use the right type of paint and primers to ensure a good result. This is where spray paints specially designed for plastics come into play.

This common question is much like the other common query we receive which is “can uPVC windows be painted?” UPVC doors and windows can be painted, but only with the right kind of paint.

Spray painting a uPVC door allows for an even coat, and a carefully chosen color can drastically enhance your home’s exterior aesthetics. It provides homeowners a cost-effective way to transform and extend the life of their doors without needing a replacement.

If you’re wondering how long uPVC paint lasts, check out our an article we wrote.

However, it’s not without its challenges. Spray painting requires patience, skill, and meticulous preparation to prevent the paint from peeling or flaking. Furthermore, the paint’s lifespan is usually shorter compared to the original door color, meaning it may need regular touch-ups. Despite these potential issues, many find the benefits of personalisation and rejuvenation make spray painting a compelling option for uPVC doors.

Preparation: The Key to Success

Any painting project’s success lies in thorough preparation, and spray painting a uPVC door is no exception. Without proper groundwork, the paint may not adhere properly, leading to peeling, flaking, or an uneven finish. The right preparation ensures a smooth, vibrant finish that lasts.

Materials and Equipment Needed

– Mild detergent

– Warm water

– Soft cloths

– 120-grit sandpaper

– Tack cloth

– Painter’s tape

– Plastic or newspaper sheets

– Primer designed for plastic surfaces

– Spray paint suitable for uPVC

Step-by-Step Preparation Guide

1. Clean the Door: Begin by thoroughly cleaning your uPVC door. Mix some mild detergent with warm water and use a soft cloth to wash the door, ensuring you remove all dirt, grease, and grime.

2. Dry the Door: After cleaning, dry the door using a clean, dry cloth to ensure a moisture-free surface.

3. Sanding: Lightly sand the door’s surface using 120-grit sandpaper. This creates a slight abrasion on the uPVC surface that helps the paint to adhere better.

4. Clean Again: After sanding, use a tack cloth to remove any dust or particles left on the door. It’s crucial to have a clean surface before applying the primer.

5. Tape and Cover: Use painter’s tape to mask off any hardware or areas you don’t want to paint. Cover the surrounding wall and floor with plastic sheets or newspapers to protect them from paint overspray.

6. Priming: Apply a primer specifically designed for plastic surfaces. Ensure to apply a thin, even coat and allow it to dry as per the manufacturer’s instructions.

This process may seem time-consuming, but it’s a crucial step to ensure a high-quality finish. Remember, patience and thoroughness now will pay dividends in the final results.

Choosing the Right Paint for uPVC Doors

The choice of paint for uPVC doors is crucial to the success of your painting project. Not all paints will adhere to uPVC surfaces, and using the wrong type can lead to disappointing results such as flaking or peeling paint.

uPVC is a type of plastic, and it’s non-porous, meaning it doesn’t absorb paint like wood does. Therefore, you need a paint specifically designed to bond with plastic surfaces. Spray paints often work best as they can provide a smooth, even finish without brush marks.

Look for paints that are labeled as suitable for plastics or specifically uPVC. They are typically acrylic or enamel-based, as these types of paint form a strong bond with plastic surfaces. They’re also durable and resistant to chipping, which is essential for a door that’s exposed to daily use and the elements.

Some recommended spray paint brands that work well on uPVC doors include:

1. Krylon Fusion for Plastic: This paint is designed to bond with plastic surfaces without needing a primer, making it an easy-to-use option.

2. Rust-Oleum Universal Paint and Primer in One: This product combines paint and primer, saving you a step in the preparation process. It’s designed to bond to a variety of surfaces, including plastic.

3. Valspar Outdoor Spray Paint for Plastic: This paint offers excellent adhesion to plastic surfaces and is formulated to withstand outdoor conditions.

Ensure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for the best results.

A Detailed Guide: How to Spray Paint Your uPVC Door

With the right paint in hand and your uPVC door meticulously prepared, it’s time to transform that door. Here’s a detailed step-by-step guide on how to go about it.

Materials Needed:

Spray paint for uPVC

– Masking tape

– Safety goggles

– Respirator mask

– Protective clothing

Step-by-Step Guide:

1. Safety First: Always ensure you’re wearing protective clothing, safety goggles, and a respirator mask to protect yourself from paint particles. Work in a well-ventilated area to allow paint fumes to disperse.

2. Shake the Paint Can: Before you start, give your spray paint can a good shake for at least a minute. This helps to mix the paint inside for a consistent color.

3. Test the Spray Paint: Spray a small amount of paint onto a piece of cardboard to ensure it’s the right color and the nozzle works correctly.

4. Start Painting: Hold the can about 10-12 inches away from the door’s surface. Spray the paint using even, side-to-side sweeping motions. Start and finish spraying off the side of the door to prevent buildup. Aim for a light, even coat to avoid drips and runs. 

5. Let it Dry: Allow the first coat to dry according to the paint can’s instructions. It’s important not to rush this process. Applying a second coat before the first is dry can lead to a poor finish.

6. Apply Additional Coats: Apply a second coat, and third if necessary, in the same manner as the first. Let each coat dry thoroughly before applying the next.

7. Dry and Cure: Once the final coat is applied, leave the door to dry and cure. This can take anywhere from a few hours to a few days, depending on the paint used.

Best Practices and Mistakes to Avoid:

– Avoid Rushing: Patience is key when spray painting. Rushing the process can lead to drips, uneven coverage, and a poor finish.

– Don’t Skimp on Prep: As tempting as it may be to dive straight into painting, the preparation stage is crucial. Skimping on this step can result in the paint failing to adhere correctly.

– Don’t Spray Too Close or Too Much: Holding the can too close or spraying too much paint at once can lead to drips and runs. Several light coats are better than one heavy one.

With these steps and tips, you’re ready to add a dash of color and personalised touch to your uPVC door.

Maintenance and Care: Making Your New Paint Last

A beautifully painted uPVC door can dramatically enhance your home’s curb appeal. However, maintaining its look requires some care. Here are some tips to ensure your door stays vibrant and appealing for years to come.

1. Cleaning: Regular cleaning can help maintain the door’s look. Use a soft cloth with mild soapy water to gently clean the door. Avoid using harsh chemicals or abrasive materials as they can damage the paint.

2. Avoid Direct Sunlight: If possible, try to shield your door from continuous direct sunlight. Prolonged exposure can cause the color to fade over time.

3. Inspect Regularly: Make a habit of inspecting the door for any signs of wear and tear. Look for chipping, flaking, or fading.

4. Touch-Ups: If you notice minor damage or paint chipping, address it promptly with a touch-up. This can prevent further damage and maintain the overall look.

5. Repaint When Necessary: Despite your best efforts, there may come a time when a full repaint is necessary. Indications for this include extensive chipping, peeling, fading color, or if the surface becomes rough to the touch. 

Remember, although a spray-painted uPVC door may require a bit more maintenance than an unpainted one, the freedom to express your personal style and change it as often as you wish makes it worthwhile. With these maintenance tips, you can ensure that your door continues to be a source of pride and joy.


1. What type of paint is best for uPVC doors?

The best type of paint for uPVC doors is one specifically designed to bond with plastic surfaces. Typically, these are acrylic or enamel-based paints that can form a strong bond with the non-porous uPVC material. Brands such as Krylon Fusion for Plastic, Rust-Oleum Universal Paint and Primer in One, and Valspar Outdoor Spray Paint for Plastic are recommended.

2. Can you change the color of a uPVC door by spray painting?

Yes, you can change the color of a uPVC door by spray painting it. Spray paint allows for a wide range of color options, offering the flexibility to transform your door to match your personal style or home decor.

3. What is the process for spray painting a uPVC door?

The process for spray painting a uPVC door involves several steps: initial cleaning, sanding, secondary cleaning, masking, priming, and then applying several thin layers of spray paint. Each step must be done meticulously, and enough time should be given for the paint to dry between coats for the best results.

4. How long does spray paint last on a uPVC door?

The longevity of spray paint on a uPVC door depends on various factors including the quality of the paint, preparation before painting, exposure to sunlight and weather, and maintenance. If done correctly and well-maintained, a spray-painted uPVC door can last several years before needing a touch-up or repaint.

5. What are the risks associated with spray painting a uPVC door?

While spray painting can rejuvenate and personalize your uPVC door, it comes with a few risks. These include potential peeling or flaking of paint if not properly prepared or painted, the need for more maintenance compared to unpainted uPVC, and the potential of voiding any existing warranty on the door. It’s crucial to weigh these factors before deciding to spray paint your uPVC door.


Spray painting your uPVC door is a viable, cost-effective method to customize and inject personality into your home’s exterior. Though it requires careful preparation, the right paint, and a meticulous application process, the end result can significantly enhance the aesthetic appeal of your door. Regular maintenance and care are crucial for longevity, but the occasional touch-up or repaint is a small price to pay for the freedom to express your unique style. By taking the time to transform your uPVC door, you’re not just altering a fixture in your home; you’re creating a statement piece that reflects your personal taste and lifestyle.

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