Cabinet Refacing | Refacing Kitchen Cabinets

When it comes to kitchen remodeling plans, you have so many choices that it can be hard to know where to start.  First of all, you’ve got a budget to consider.  This can be one of the trickier things to work around if you want to really remodel your whole kitchen.  You can either spend tens of thousands of dollars to have everything brand new, from your flooring to in-ceiling mount kitchen lighting and all the appliances, countertops and cabinets in between, or you can save yourself some money.  Now, if your appliances and such need to be updated or replaced, then there is no getting around that.  However, there are some alternatives when it comes to your cabinetry.

One thing you can consider is cabinet refacing.  If you haven’t heard of this, “refacing” simply refers to the fact that you are putting a new ‘face’ on your cabinets. This material could be a wood veneer or you could also consider replacing just your cabinet doors.  Refacing kitchen cabinets is still a time-intensive process and it can cost money to have done, but it will likely still be more cost effective than purchasing brand new cabinets and paying for installation.  You’ll have to weigh both options and see which one comes out ahead for you.

If you are quite handy and have some patience, then you might like to tackle the refacing job yourself.  Depending upon what design you are looking for, this can be a good DIY project.  However, if you have some fancy designs in mind or your cabinets have some intricate details, then you might be better off hiring a pro.  There are a few steps to consider in this process.

Refacing Cabinets: A Step by Step Process

In some cases, you can simply repaint your cabinets.  This is typically the simplest of the refacing choices.  You will still need to do some proper prep work in order for the project to work out well.  You’ll start by cleaning the old cabinet doors.  This can be done with a mild detergent and water.  Cleaning off the old oils and grime that naturally gets on your cabinets over the years will make the next part of the process quicker and give you a cleaner end result.

After cleaning, this applies to whether you are painting or re-staining or applying a new veneer, you’ll lightly sand the doors.  This will give you a fresh surface to which your next layer or primer will adhere.  If you are repainting, then priming will be the next step.  The primer can be applied at this point to give your paint a great base.  If re-staining, make sure to use a tact cloth or other means of removing all of the dust.  Then, you can re-apply your stain following the manufacturer’s instructions.  The new veneers will likely require a professional installation, so we’ll leave that for another discussion.

Once the primer or stain dries, you are ready for another coat.  Often, it will require several coats to give you a smooth finish.  The final coat of paint or stain for your kitchen cabinets can now be applied.  You’ll want to ensure that you are using a semi-gloss or high-gloss paint or stain to give them the ability to be washed.

If you’ve chosen new hardware, which is likely, you can apply it at this time as well.  Now, you can re-hang your cabinet doors and admire your work.  If you have any other kitchen cabinetry or surfaces, like a pantry door, that had the same paint or stain color as your cabinets, you’ll want to follow the same procedure to have them match your newly refaced kitchen cabinets.  With these steps, you will have saved yourself thousands off the cost of new cabinets.  Now, you can spend some of that savings on the other aspects of your remodel, like appliances and countertops.

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