Nov 03 2010

Reface Your Kitchen Cabinet Doors for a Beautiful New Look

Published by at 10:36 am under Kitchens

Every homeowner dreads when the time comes for new cabinets, as this is one of the biggest expenses around when it comes to remodeling their home.  Whether the cabinets are worn out, or you simply want to give your kitchen a fresh new look, you can do it yourself for a fraction of the cost of professionally installed new boxes.  This article explains how to reface your cabinet doors using veneers, saving you potentially thousands of dollars.

Avoid taking shortcuts

Many people tend to take shortcuts when working on a project.  With this one, don’t attempt to complete the work without removing the cabinet doors. Take the cabinet doors and all the hardware off, including screws and hinges.  This will help you avoid possibly scratching other surfaces as well as yourself.

How to begin

Now that you have the cabinet doors and hardware removed, begin by sanding the doors.  In order to install veneers so that they look beautiful and last for years, you need to sand the sides of the doors and the face frame down to the bare wood.  This helps give you a good sealing surface, so that veneers adhere properly.  Use a coarse sand paper in the beginning, and then switch to a finer sand paper to complete the work.

Be sure to clear away all of the wood dust and other debris from surfaces by vacuuming and using a tack cloth.  Veneers will adhere well giving a smooth, professional look only if all sawdust is thoroughly removed.

Preparing veneers

This step is where patience will pay off!  Don’t try to hurry as you measure and cut veneers for the face and sides of your cabinets.  Measure your face frame and sides, and measure again to make certain you have the exact measurement, then cut the veneer to the exact size you need.  By making sure you do it right the first time, you won’t waste your veneer making inaccurate cuts.

Now it is time to install the veneer on to the cabinet door.  For this step, you will need to use contact cement applied to both the back of the veneer and the bare wood of the cabinet door.  This will ensure that you get a solid contact with no air bubbles, that way the finished look is smooth and professional.  Once you place the veneer and know that it is aligned properly, use a roller to press all surfaces down and ensure thorough adhesion.

Final Steps

Once you have applied the veneer to the cabinet door and edges, inspect your work at once.  If you see any glue drips, cracks or veneers that appear to be misaligned, take care of the problem now.  It’s much easier to correct a mistake now rather than wait until the glue has set up hard.

Now you are ready to re-hang your cabinet doors!  Once they are thoroughly dry, begin hanging and replacing hardware and hinges.  Place the doors on their hardware.  Once they are in place, simply wipe off any smudges or fingerprints you may have left with a cloth, then apply a little furniture polish with a soft rag to protect your cabinets and give them a soft sheen.

As you can see, this project does take a little work, but the savings make it well worth your efforts.  Anyone can give their cabinets a great new look with just a little elbow grease!

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