ReFinishing Exterior Fiberglass Door - Painting & Finish Work - Contractor Talk

ReFinishing Exterior Fiberglass Door

 
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Old 06-01-2010, 04:29 AM   #1
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ReFinishing Exterior Fiberglass Door


Hi folks,
I got a request from a good friend/customer who has an older stained fiberglass front door that is starting to show its age.
The finish is fading off and sort of flaking.
I would say it was installed some 20 years ago. Door structurally is still great condition. It is set back in front porch. Doesnt catch hardly any sun.
Has no storm door installed.
They asked me if I would be willing to refinish the door, and I told them I would give it a shot.
I have gel stained NEW fiberglass doors before, but I have never tried to refinish one.
Can someone give me some tips as to how to remove the old finish as Im sure you wouldnt want to take a sander to it. (not being wood). They would like it restained and then polyeurathne or similiar.
I have noticed some other fiberglass stained doors in this area starting to do this as well. Knowing the proper way to refinish them would be of a help.
Thanks in advance,
Randy Belk
Athens, TN
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Old 06-01-2010, 07:15 AM   #2
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Re: ReFinishing Exterior Fiberglass Door


Never done one, but I would bet that either laquer thinner or a paint remover would disolve the old finish without harming the fiberglass. A nylon scrub brush would be helpful to get into the graining.

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Old 06-02-2010, 01:02 AM   #3
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Re: ReFinishing Exterior Fiberglass Door


Yeah, I have always thought it strange that nobody maintains their fiberglass doors..and some of them are expensive. I would treat is like a strip job. Lacquer thinner is the first thing I would try and will work well if enough of the actual finish is worn away. We have painted the doors and then stained over the paint but this is a last resort...best to strip it down to raw fiberglass and then stain. If you have stained new doors, you may notice a difference when staining doors that have been stripped....the stain will not bite in the same way and it is usually more of a challenge to get the stain to look right.
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Old 06-02-2010, 08:25 AM   #4
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Re: ReFinishing Exterior Fiberglass Door


If solvent will work, I would try lacquer thinner first...acetone next, go the solvent route.

If solvent is not efficient, use chemical stripper.. IF the fiberglass is textured?? go slow, allow only enough time for the stripper to dissolve some gunk, wash to stop the chemical action and come back to that spot later.

Strippers contain Methylene Chloride or something chemically close. This chemical is strong enough to soften the fiberglass, so some loss of detail will happen. There will be a very short time differential between the stripper "almost" working and the stripper working "too well"

test a small patch before firing the big guns....
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Old 06-04-2010, 06:56 PM   #5
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Re: ReFinishing Exterior Fiberglass Door


No need to strip the door prim it with bm 46000 acrylic primer tinted a wood tone color then us the minwax gel stain with a graining tool on top of that and then a clear exterior water base poly on top of that.
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Old 06-04-2010, 08:17 PM   #6
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Re: ReFinishing Exterior Fiberglass Door


Thanks C&T.. That sounds good. I don't need to worry about the Poly on the exterior? Just use Bm primer?
The door has wood grain finish now so would I still need to use a wood graining tool?
I am going to give it a try.
Thanks again.
Randy
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Old 04-09-2015, 09:21 PM   #7
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Re: ReFinishing Exterior Fiberglass Door


Use the citrus stripper, its strong enough, but not enough to burn the fiberglass. Also, try not to pull the factory base coat of primer off.
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Old 04-09-2015, 09:50 PM   #8
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Re: ReFinishing Exterior Fiberglass Door


Quote:
Originally Posted by Directd1 View Post
Use the citrus stripper, its strong enough, but not enough to burn the fiberglass. Also, try not to pull the factory base coat of primer off.

Really? This topic is almost 5 yrs old I would think he's got the project done.WTF
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Old 04-10-2015, 12:45 AM   #9
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Re: ReFinishing Exterior Fiberglass Door


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Really? This topic is almost 5 yrs old I would think he's got the project done.WTF
Good thing he's a "Handy-Man"
Must be higher up than your standard issue "handyman"

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