Easily Update Old Door Knobs

5 Materials
1 Hour

As part of my Budget Friendly Hallway Refresh I wanted to do something with the brass door knobs on all the doors in the hallway. Since the word budget friendly was part of this project I decided to spray paint the brass door knobs instead of buying them.

Here is what the door knobs looked like before.

easily update old door knobs

This is an easy update until I decide if or when I want to buy new door knobs. 

Spray paint really can do amazing things and in a quick and cheap way. It can be a temporary or permanent fix depending on the project and a can of spray paint costs around $4. 

First I removed the door knobs using a screwdriver. I kept the door knob sets together. Then I sanded the knobs with 400 grit sandpaper. This is to lightly rough up the surface so the spray paint adheres better to the door knobs. Wipe to clean the door knobs after sanding. You can use a degreaser to clean the knobs if needed. 

I punched holes in a piece of cardboard to set the knobs up to easily spray paint them. I did this with both knobs and the screws. Then I spray painted several light quick even coats allowing them to dry between coats.  

easily update old door knobs

I applied a few coats of the clear sealer within one hour per instructions. Then I allowed this to dry for 24-48 hours.  I reattached the knobs. In order to protect the knobs from the paint rubbing off I applied painters tape around it to protect it from the screwdriver. 

easily update old door knobs

Even if it's temporary they were an easy and cheap improvement and they look much better in the hallway.

easily update old door knobs

easily update old door knobs

This seems so simple, but it makes a big difference. Even if you don't like black you can choose any color you would like to do an easy update on the doors in your house.

Speaking of doors my Bifold Barn Door is really popular and it updates a bifold door for about $15.

Looking for other easy spray paint projects? Check out my Galvanized Vase made from a Cracker Box.

Thanks for checking out this post.

Happy DIYing,


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Tiffany from Dream Design DIY

Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!


Have a question about this project?

3 of 4 questions
  • Mary
    on Mar 26, 2019

    What about the hinges on the doors Are they not noticed? Mine are bright. Love this idea ! Guess I'd spray hinges too.

    • Yes Mary,

      I recommend spray painting the hinges as well. I wanted to do the door knobs quickly and will update the hinges when I have time to take the doors off.

  • Elaine McIntyre Weeden
    on Mar 26, 2019

    I spray painted all of ours a few years ago and now the paint is all wearing off. What did I do wrong?

  • Norma
    on Apr 4, 2019

    I did this project but for my bathroom caninet knobs & hinges but 7 mo. Later they r all sticky what happened

Join the conversation

4 of 14 comments
  • Laura
    on Apr 2, 2019

    Bought a house where the owner had spray painted the knobs. A few years later and now I need to buy new knobs. The paint has worn off unevenly, so I don't want to spread paint again.

  • Faye Hill
    on Apr 13, 2019

    I sprayed my bath door knobs and it lasted until I sold the home, about 6 yrs. and barely showed wear. I didn't even use a sealer. I love the idea. Yes, spray paint is a great fix and inexpensive.

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