Painting Instead of Replacing Cabinets – A Great Alternative
Quite often you can give your kitchen a bright, new look for a fraction of the cost of replacing your kitchen cabinets. If your current cabinets “have good bones,” as they say, you might not need to spend the extra for new cabinets.
I recently ran across this article by a do-it-yourselfer who has transformed her kitchen into a beautiful and inviting place.
Dark Oak Cabinets
A lot of people are getting tired of their oak cabinets that make their kitchens look dark. Oak poses a challenge for painting due to its deep grain. Most cabinets newer than the 1960’s are not solid wood and can’t be sanded down smooth. That means oak cabinets need to have the grain filled in and then smoothed down before spray painting.
Compared to replacing cabinets it’s well worth the effort in order to save thousands of dollars.
Dark Hinges on Light Cabinets
Keep in mind your door hinges, unless they’re the newer European style that are hidden from view, will be dark and show up a lot more after painting the cabinets than they do on dark oak.
It could be difficult to find lighter colored hinges that mount the same way as the ones that you have now. Unless you are OK with dark hinges you may end up having to retrofit European style hinges which require routing out recess holes in the door frames.
Mix It Up with Dark and Light Cabinets?
The nice thing about painting your cabinets is you can mix and match colors: a light color for the cabinets along your walls and a dark color for your island. I’ve even seen the doors and drawer fronts painted one color and the frames painted another color for a dramatic two-tone effect. Browse through the manufacturer catalogues and brochures at Lowes or The Home Depot for ideas as well as see door samples of painted cabinet doors for inspiration.
Is This Something You Really Want to Do Yourself?
I have seen a few owner-done kitchen cabinet paint job but the results are, well, less than desirable, shall we say? Some have used a brush instead of spraying, used an inferior product, failed to get the surface clean and de-glossed, or have a consistent application. For those who have tried to spray the cabinets have either had not enough paint to cover or runs from too much paint applied – or both.
It’s not an easy thing to get right which is why many painting companies don’t do it. It requires more skill than most professional painters have.
How Much It Costs – Roughly
I shy away from giving estimates over the phone or even with pictures sent to me because there are so many variables involved in coming up with a price but with cabinets it’s a little more straightforward. Just add up all of your doors and drawer fronts and multiply by $150. That will give you an idea of whether it’s in your budget or how much you will save by painting rather than replacing your cabinets.
For more about how we paint kitchen cabinets please visit our Kitchen Cabinet Painting and Refinishing page.