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How to Stain and Hang a Bedroom Door

Slowly but surely Tom and I are making our way through the rooms in our house to turn them into what we want them to be. One thing we’ve done in the two rooms we’ve worked on so far is replace the doors.

Obviously when renovating you don’t HAVE to change out the doors, but we did because we made drastic changes to the trim in our finished rooms and we wanted the doors to match.

Our spare room’s color and trim before
Our spare room’s accent wall with a much darker trim during our process (we’re not done just yet!)

When we bought our home, the previous owner used very wide white trim throughout the house that just wasn’t our style. We chose a thinner trim and stained it with Varathane wood stain in espresso.

We purchased an unfinished wooden pre-hung bedroom door from The Home Depot.  The one we purchased isn’t online, so I’m linking a similar version here.

Now for the rest I’m giving it to Tom, because he’s the one who has the know-how here, haha:

The staining process:

The door was smooth enough so I didn’t feel the need to sand it or the trim first. You can if you’d like, though. I recommend cutting your trim pieces prior to staining because it’s much easier to line them up and catch any mistakes when you can see the natural wood grains.

For our door I used two coats of stain, wiping on with a rag evenly. Wait two hours between coats. The more coats you do the darker the stain will be.

The polyurethane process:

For this we used Watco wipe on polyurethane. Wipe it on evenly with a separate rag. I applied two coats for this door, waiting four hours in between each coat. It should be dry within four hours, but I like to wait 24 hours or longer before nailing any polyurethane wood pieces to the walls.

The hanging process:

First, cut the nails that are holding the old door and remove the door.

Line up the new door using the shims to level it, starting on the hinge side. This part takes a lot of patience, but you need to make sure it’s level so the door doesn’t open or shut on it’s own – like ghosts!

Make sure the door closes properly – again, practice makes perfect! Nail it as you go through the door and into the shims.

For the door knob, put the latch in the door and screw it in, making sure everything is lined up properly. Slide the doorknobs into the latch and then screw them together. Voila!

And there you have it! A brand new bedroom door that matches the room for just around $100. Thanking Tom for sharing his tips, and for throwing in most of the elbow grease (I helped carry the doors!!) to make our spare room look as dreamy as possible.


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