Refinishing Fiberglass/Plastic Doors

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Topic by northwoodsman posted 04-22-2008 04:54 PM 22057 views 0 times favorited 16 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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3 posts in 4540 days

04-22-2008 04:54 PM

Topic tags/keywords: refinish door gel stain

I thought that I had a fiberglass front door, but am now told that it may be a plastic composite. My house is 5 years old, so is the door. It was originally stained and clear coated (possibly polyurethane). It is an 8’ tall door. It needs to be refinished becuase the finish is pitting and flaking off (it gets about 4 hours of sun every day). I am told that I cannot use a stripper becuase it would “melt” the door. I was told to paint over the current finish with a light gold or tan paint and then stain it with gel stain. It may or may not work becuase the wood grained pores may get filled in with another coat of paint. Obviously I can’t sand it because the artifical grain would go away. Any ideas?

View MRTRIM's profile


743 posts in 4560 days

04-22-2008 05:00 PM

i have a customer who told me yesterday hes useing a citrus based stripper , says it smells like orange peels . you might try a google search on citrus strippers . meanwhile ill ask him for a product name as soon as i talk with him

View topapilot's profile


2 posts in 4546 days

04-22-2008 07:16 PM

My last house had a metal front door with plastic trim facing south in Maine. I added a storm door to help with heat loss and found out why there was never on put on before: a few weeks later (November IIRC) the sun melted the plastic trim! I ended up removing the trim, filled the holes with bondo, and painted the whole thing. I had no idea a storm door was going to cause so much trouble and expense.

View tenontim's profile


151 posts in 4559 days

04-23-2008 12:18 AM

If you can get the old paint off, with something like the Citrus stripper that Mr Trim is talking about, you can repaint(spray paint) it with light coats of lacquer paint. The paint will “melt” the plastic too, but if you use light coats, it won’t hurt it. That way the paint will really hold onto the door and should last for many years.

-- Tim

View northwoodsman's profile


3 posts in 4540 days

04-23-2008 04:38 AM

Mr. Trim – I would like to find out what the citrus based stripper is. My first thought is to powerwash it to get the remainder of the “loose” material off. I’d like to try the citrus stripper also. I just don’t want to have to do all of this work to stain it, then end up painting it a solid color in the end. I’m open to any and all suggestions. I appreciate your comments so far.

View MRTRIM's profile


743 posts in 4560 days

04-23-2008 04:55 AM

im meeting with my customer at 6 tomorrow . ill get the name and post as soon as i get home

View tenontim's profile


151 posts in 4559 days

04-23-2008 11:09 PM

Citri-Strip is one of the brand names of the citrus based strippers.

-- Tim

View MRTRIM's profile


743 posts in 4560 days

04-24-2008 03:03 AM

yes tim is right on . thats the name and my guy got it at the home depot

View pam's profile


1 post in 4500 days

06-01-2008 04:49 PM

Mr. Tim…...Who would you hire to see if you can refinish a door? I think my door is fiberglass, but I am not 100% sure and it has many layers of paint.

View MRTRIM's profile


743 posts in 4560 days

06-02-2008 12:12 AM

yes you can refinish fiberglass doors . if your going to strip the old paint off be careful . some chemical strippers will soften the gelcoat . you might try the citri- strip

View northwoodsman's profile


3 posts in 4540 days

06-28-2008 02:39 AM

Okay, it’s done! After putting it off for two months I woke up on Saturday morning and decided to tackle this project. I want to start off by thanking all those who responded. I went to HD and bought the Citri-strip and a new wire brush (good quality, not the cheap wooden handle type). I put a coat of the stripper on about 1/3 of the door and crossed my fingers. After about 30 minutes I took the wire brush to it following the grain, and brushed the heck out of it. It didn’t look like it was working but it was. I took it outside and power-washed that section and it was perfect. Right down to the way it looked when it was new and before it was stained. I applied the stripper to the remainder of the door, waited about 30-40 minutes and wire brushed the rest of it. A few areas took 2 coats, but after power-washing it the door is like new. After a new coat of gel-stain it’s ready for the clear coat. It was easier and turned out better than I could have ever imagined.

View Jason22's profile


5 posts in 2579 days

09-11-2013 04:43 AM

Why don’t you replace this with some new door with better design because this will be more good then a refurnished door.. anyhow it all up to you. Good luck mate

-- http://www.thepoolfactory.com/swimming-pools/above-ground-pools

View richcollins's profile


4 posts in 1828 days

09-26-2015 07:22 AM

This should put awareness to everyone, that most home building materials today were made of composite one.

-- http://caldwells.com/ - 2070 Newcomb Avenue, Unit B, San Francisco, CA 94124

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1 post in 813 days

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23 posts in 553 days

05-25-2020 06:05 PM

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67 posts in 457 days

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389 posts in 259 days

08-30-2020 11:10 AM

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