Get the Most Out of Kitchen Cabinets Refinishing in 8 Steps
A kitchen cabinets refinishing can make all the difference to the style and décor of
your home when you’re working on a budget. Use the following steps to make sure that you get started on
the right foot and know what is involved in giving a face lift to the central room of your home.
Step 1: Plan your kitchen cabinets refinishing project
The trick to making sure that your kitchen cabinets refinishing is completed without any unexpected hitches, is
planning. This means making sure that you know the steps to doing the task, you are aware of what tools
you’ll need for kitchen cabinets refinishing, you’ll have those tools ready and prepared when you need them,
and you’ll use them correctly. Have the following supplies ready for kitchen cabinets refinishing:
- Drop sheet, newspapers, or another protector that will stop paint and other substances from marking your
floors, kitchen countertops, and other surfaces.
- Painter’s tape
- Hand tools such as screw drivers, scrapers, sand paper, a hammer, etc.
- Paint stripper (if needed)
- Paint, paint brushes of good quality in different sizes, a paint sprayer (if that is the finish you want),
rags, and a paint tray.
Step 2: Empty the cabinetry for kitchen cabinets refinishing
Though it may seem like a nuisance to pull everything out of your shelves and drawers, not having to work around
them while you’re trying to complete your kitchen cabinets refinishing project will make a big difference.
Step 3: Remove the doors and shelves for kitchen cabinets refinishing
The majority of shelves in cabinetry will simply lift off their supports or pegs, though some may need some
additional prying or unscrewing. The key to keeping the process simple is to label every shelf so that you know
where it will go when it’s time to put it back. The same can be said about the doors. Unscrew each one
and label it (on the inside) so that you will know where to put it back after its kitchen cabinets refinishing.
Step 4: Prepare the doors for kitchen cabinets refinishing with careful cleaning
Use appropriate soaps and degreasers to clean the cupboard doors for your kitchen cabinets refinishing.
Any grease or other substances that are left behind can cause an uneven finish when you replace it. If there
are any areas with peeling or bubbling paint or varnish, gently sand them away. Use a damp cloth to wipe away
any dust particles and make sure to allow it to fully dry.
Step 5: Clean hardware to be reused for kitchen cabinets refinishing
If you will be reusing your old hardware, make sure to give it a good cleaning so that your kitchen cabinets
refinishing project will have a fresher and newer looking result.
Step 6: Remove the old finish to prepare for new kitchen cabinets refinishing
If you’re going to be applying a polyurethane finish or a varnish, or if you will be staining wood that had
previously been painted, your kitchen cabinets refinishing will need to start with the removal of the previous
finish. This will require some strong chemicals and a lot of sanding. The most effective finish
removers are liquid strippers, but semi-pastes and gels won’t drip, so they should be your choice if you will be
working vertically. The following products are usually recommended for specific tasks:
• Mineral spirits or turpentine for wax
• Lacquer thinner for polyurethane, lacquer, or shellac
• Denatured alcohol for latex or shellac
• Xylol or xylene for water-based finishes
Step 7: Fill dents before kitchen cabinets refinishing
Remove any chips, dents, and nicks before your kitchen cabinets refinishing by using some wood putty and then
sanding it down once it’s dry.
Step 8: Stain or prime and paint your new kitchen cabinets refinishing
Follow the manufacturer directions for the kitchen cabinets refinishing product you will be using such as stain,
or primer and paint. Make sure that you allow each coat to dry very well before applying the next
With patience, time, and the right planning, you can give your kitchen a whole new style of décor through
kitchen cabinets refinishing.
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