What is Cabinet Refinishing?
The most important part of our home is a kitchen. It’s a place where we spend quality time with our family during cooking and enjoying a good meal together. People spend thousands of dollars in their kitchens to make it a dream come true and that is the reason why kitchen cabinets are an important thing to spend money on.
Your cabinets get a dull look if they are not maintained properly. The wood texture becomes to fade and leaves a dull, old, rusty look which is why you should hire a kitchen cabinet painter! Just like you take care of your skin by applying certain products and use sunblock to protect your skin from harmful rays, your kitchen cabinets need certain care as well!
In the refinishing process, experts apply certain layers of material which enables them to last longer than you expected. These added layers make the furniture shine as its new and revamp your whole kitchen leaving an appealing look.
Have you seen your friend’s kitchen game changes entirely when you last visited? That’s because he revamped the whole idea by having their cabinets refinished! By having completed process, your kitchen cabinets get a new finishing by maintaining its original color and texture or completely different color to spice it up.
Why do people go for cabinet refinishing? Is it really cheaper than purchasing new cabinets?
Its human nature, that we become happy when we change our home’s aesthetic. People get tired of the same look, same painted walls, same furniture, and the same kitchen for years and want a change for a fresh look.
Also, cabinet refinishing is far affordable as compared to entire cabinets replacement.
Difference between cabinet refinishing and cabinet painting!
Cabinet painting involves a whole new paint to your existing kitchen cabinets. The major difference lies in the series of a wide range of colors you can play with your kitchen theme. Cabinet painting also requires a few days to dry out completely whereas cabinet refurnishing can be used within the same day!
Usually, it is cheaper to get cabinet refinishing as compared to hire cabinet painters who are experienced professionals.
10 Tips For DIY Kitchen Cabinet Refinishing
The interesting thing to know is that you can easily refinish your kitchen cabinets using DIY techniques at home. By watching a Youtube tutorial from a DIY expert, people can do DIY cabinet refinishing without hiring someone.
If you are a DIY person and loves to take some challenges, here are a few tips to follow:
- Precautionary measures
The first and foremost DIY tip is to take extra precautionary measures. You are not a professional and you don’t know how the refinishing products work that is why you have to be extra careful. Always use gloves during the whole process and try to open the windows for maximum ventilation; if possible do the refinishing in an outdoor place to get maximum fresh air.
Don’t do the refinishing with kids around. The products are tricky and it can be a problem with toddlers or kids around leading to a mishap.
- Cover the extra area
Before starting the refinishing, you have to cover the extra areas of your kitchen so that they are secured from stains. You can use sheets and newspapers to cover up the kitchen utilities and stuff.
- Remove the dirt
Before doing anything, you have to dust off the cabinets properly and ensure there are no stains, grease, oil or debris on the surface. You can also use a grease remover on the surface of kitchen cabinets to remove the oil which can be a major barrier while applying paint.
- Remove the cabinet doors
Now you have to remove and unscrew the cabinet doors using specific tools. The tip is to label each door and each cabinetry so that it can be easier for you to attach them after the process.
- Scrub it well
Cabinet refinishing starts with scrubbing and by scrubbing we mean A LOT OF SCRUBBING. You have to take out the cabinet doors and cabinetries to scrub the wood properly. With the help of a scrubbing paper, the wooden texture of the cabinet will become smooth and plain. Such texture is favorable for a seamless refinishing.
- Hardware Soaking
The handles, knobs, springs and other hardware also needs to shine bright on your cabinet doors. You have to soak them well in lukewarm water with detergent or washing powder. A 30-min soaking will be enough to remove all the stains and dust.
Once, they are well soaked, you have to scrub them as well!
- Refinishing cabinets
The tricky step starts here when you have to actually refinish the cabinets using certain stripping agents. Remember to do the refinishing in a well-ventilated area! It is important to use the right product for your cabinet otherwise the texture will be destroyed and your hour’s hard work will be of no use.
Detailed information on refinishing products is given in the below section.
- Wood sanding
Once, there is a fine layer of refinishing material on the cabinet, you need to fill up any hole or cracks on the surface. This is done by using wood wax and rubbing it over the holes and cracks with the help of sandpaper.
The final result is a very plain and seamless texture!
The last step of DIY cabinet refinishing is painting but before applying the paint coat you will have to apply a thin coat of wood primer.
Choosing good quality paint is very important so that the whole process can stay longer and maintains a good life span of your cabinets. A thing pain layer is applied with the help of cabinet brushes and let them dry for at least two days.
- Let it dry!
The last step is to keep the doors and cabinets dry for as long as the paintbox is instructed to. The dry out phase is a little longer than you expect and that is the reason professionals use some accelerators and extenders.
What products to use for DIY cabinet refinishing?
For beginners, who have never done cabinet refinishing before, we advise to buy the following products for a smooth and seamless renovation:
- Grease Remover:
It helps to remove all the oil or greasy portions on the surface of the cabinets. Not using the grease remover will not allow the paint to adhere to the surface and hence there won’t be a fine finishing.
- Sand Paper:
You will need sandpaper to scrub the wooden surface a lot. It’s an important thing because before applying any coats of adhesives and paints, the surface must be smooth and plain.
- Sanding Sealers: Sanding sealers are like base-coats which you apply to the cabinets when you are doing white or off-white finishes. These sealers enable the white finishes to adhere firmly and very useful.
- Wood Wax: Before applying any stripping agent, one has to make sure that the wooden surface has no cracks or holes which can be there if the cabinets are old. These cracks/holes are filled up with the help of wood wax. The result is smooth and plain surface ready to enjoy any base-coat.
- Milk Paints and glazes:
Milk paints are creamy pigmented paints you use to give your cabinets a new look whereas glazes are used to give the cabinets a shimmery, glossy and shiny chic look. It will not be less to call them “game-changer” of cabinet refinishing.
Just like you apply primer to your face before applying a foundation, primers are also used as an undercoat to give a non-textured, creamy look to cabinets. Primers are also a reason for a seamless finish.
- Accelerator and Extenders:
Pain takes time to dry out and it is hard to use the kitchen while the painted cabinets are drying out. To increase the dry out time of cabinets, accelerators and extenders are used which speed up the process and you can reuse your kitchen soon.
- Stripping Agent:
The most important thing which you need to consider while cabinet refinishing at home is to use the right stripping agent (refinishing product). You need to know what kind of wood you have in your cabinets and find a product that can adhere to that wood easily.
Cons of cabinet refinishing at home
Where doing cabinet refinishing at your own seems interesting, it is very challenging as well. Here are a few things which you should be keeping in mind before planning to do the business yourself.
First of all, a DIY cabinet refinishing is extremely time-consuming. If you are having a full-time job or you are a student, you will only have weekends to do this stuff. So, the whole process will take a lot of your weekends to get final results.
Say goodbye to your hangouts, laundry, rest, shopping or visiting friends because the major part of your day will be spent scrubbing the wood!
- Poor finishing
Even if you find time to do the job, you can’t achieve the level of finishing an expert cabinet painter or a company does. They are pro cabinet painters and doing the job for years. You, on the other hand, have learned the art via the internet and, hence, the quality of work will be highly visible.
Not only cabinet refinishing energy straining but also very messy. Not being a pro in the job means you will create more mess. Taking care of the other kitchen area, utensils and working on the whole process becomes tricky. DIY projects sometimes fail because people are unable to handle the stripping agent properly and end up spraying them here and there.
Cost of DIY cabinet refinishing vs. hiring a professional:
In the USA, the cost of professional cabinet refinishing starts from $1500-$4000 depending upon the kitchen size and design. The kitchen with complex designs and huge areas can go up to $9000. However, the average cost of cabinet refinishing is $2000 for a normal kitchen.
You can save a huge amount of money if you do the project the right way and it will take $400-$800 to complete the whole process (if your kitchen is average-sized and have a simple design). Complex cabinet design will require more tools and products which will cost you more and there is a mere risk that you will end up messing the whole idea.
Even if you are successful to hire the tools for a few hours or days, there is no guarantee if the final result is as promising as you have thought it would be. however, if you are a person who can’t compromise your weekends or free time, this job is not for you and you need to hire a professional to do it for you.
Perks of Hiring a professional company:
Newport, Rhode Island is full of professional cabinet contractors and you can hire them easily. The best things about hiring a professional for cabinet refinishing are as follows:
- They are a pro in doing this job and hence have the expertise, necessary tools, and equipment.
- The final result gives a flawless and seamless finish and changes the entire game of your kitchen.
- They complete the job without making any mess. Cabinet company will professionally remove the cabinets and take them back to their shop to complete the work.
- They provide warranty on the service they are giving you so if anything goes wrong you can get it fixed without even paying more!
Let us know what you would prefer for your kitchen cabinets. Are you going to do cabinet refinishing yourself or you want to enjoy your weekends? Have you ever wanted to know how much it costs to paint your own house?
Most painting companies are also kitchen cabinet painters. There are only a select couple companies who we trust to do the cabinets correctly. Send us a message to find out which painters for kitchen cabinets we suggest.