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Thinking of painting your front door black? Read this before you get started!

If you are looking to give your home an instant lift then give your front doors a fresh coat of paint in a bold colour. When it comes to choosing the colour, choose a colour that compliments both the architectural features and tones of your home and its environment. So, can you paint your door any colour? Absolutely! However, it is important to know that the colour you paint your external doors can affect the performance and the lifespan of your door.

What is Light Reflectance Value?

All paints have something called an LRV, or Light Reflectance Value. The higher the paint is on the LRV index, the more light it will reflect and the less likely it will cause a timber door to crack or warp. So, the colour paint you choose can help minimise the risk of sun damage! Because black paint absorbs more UV rays than lighter colours would, a black door will become hotter than it should. A door with a semi-gloss exterior, which has an LRV of 50-100, is ideal for an external door. This is because most of the light is bounced off the door, and not absorbed by it.

What other considerations are there?

It is important to recognise that on a hot day, you will probably have your air conditioning set at 23 degrees, whilst the outside is 39 degrees. This results in your door suffering from temperature variance issues. The front of the door will be hot and there will be a drawing out of moisture from both the timber and paint, whilst the interior of the door remains cool and unaffected. Painting a door black will accelerate this issue, resulting in the door constantly swelling then shrinking until it cannot take anymore, resulting in cracks and warps. A black paint has a LRV of approximately 5, whilst white has an LRV of around 95.

Can the colour paint I choose affect my 5 year warranty?

The major door companies, Humes and Corinthians will not guarantee warranty for doors which are painted in darker colours i.e., under LRV50. This is because they understand the science of doors, paint, and their interaction with the environment. Therefore, it is important to familiarise yourself with a paint colours LRV before you waste money and are potentially left with heartbreak.

Moral of the story?

When considering an external doors paint choice, choose a paint that has a high LRV. By following the maintenance requirements of an external door and offering adequate overhead protection it gives it the best chance of survival and assures its warranty isn’t voided.

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