New doors

18 Jan 2015
Reaction score
United Kingdom
Hi all

I have just had some new internal doors fitted and they are currently unfinished.

I’m now looking at the best way to paint the doors so they are in the best place for the long term. The doors will be painted white and the doors are solid oak (oak veneer).

At the minute they have had no treatment whatsoever apart from being hung. Aware I’ll have to take them down to paint etc but I have a couple of Q’s

Do I need to seal them prior to painting?
Or do I go straight in with a primer and then top coat?

Sponsored Links
I have read people have given oak veneer doors a coat of Zinserr cover stain before applying top coats, but maybe an ordinary wood primer would be ok, best bet is to pop into a local decorating centre ie Brewers and see what they recommend using.
I personally would play safe with the coverstain, great paint and dries quickly.
Last edited:
Personally, I wouldn't go to the trouble of removing the doors if they are going to be hand painted unless the manufacturers insist that the top and bottom edges are sealed.
Can’t believe people pay for oak veneer doors to paint them. Apply a good danish oil and this will look far better than white paint.

If you’re going to paint doors go for the cheaper egg box things, no point spending money solid doors.

Best thing I ever did was pay for good doors and not have the hassle of painting them every couple of years.
Sponsored Links
If you’re going to paint doors go for the cheaper egg box things, no point spending money solid doors.

I kinda get the point that you are making but the really cheap doors with the pressed hardboard skins will always look like cheap doors regardless of how well they are painted, additionally they are pretty poor at stopping noise or fires.

If the OP had paid for proper mortice and tennon hardwood doors then I would agree with you, but we are talking about veneered doors. They may be "solid" but they are either made from small bits of wood glued together or have a chipboard base- nothing wrong with that but they are generally cheaper than solid wood doors and tend to be more stable- no need to worry about cracks and shakes/etc.

Apropos, danish oil. I have used it on some doors in my home. On reflection I wish I had used the Osmo oil. The danish oil made the pine much more yellow and the GF insisted that I put loads of coats on so that it became shinny. Personally I would have prefered a 20(?)% sheen (and fewer coats)...
Yes I agree it’s horses for courses but even the cheapest veneered doors are around the £100 mark - I just can’t fathom why you’d paint them. At least with the egg box doors they are designed to be painted, and have a mock wood effect etched into them, with a veneered door you’ll end up with a flat finish and very little grain.

For me it’s 90% about the finish but appreciate others might consider the other factors you raised as important. For me, white architrave and a nice wood door is the best look.
a mock wood effect etched into them


though tastes vary.

My real hardwood doors I sand smooth before staining. I don't want a rough grainy texture.

Also, the solid core doors feel, and are, more substantial, and can block sound better. Very suitable for a bedroom or WC. And are strong enough that a drunk can't punch a hole straight through. Fire doors even more so, even though the core may be chipboard.

DIYnot Local

Staff member

If you need to find a tradesperson to get your job done, please try our local search below, or if you are doing it yourself you can find suppliers local to you.

Select the supplier or trade you require, enter your location to begin your search.

Are you a trade or supplier? You can create your listing free at DIYnot Local