Cabinet Painting – Most Common Concerns
Refinishing your kitchen cabinets is a big decision (especially when asking what color you should paint your kitchen cabinets). There is a lot involved, and it requires a pretty substantial investment (either your own time or the cost of hiring a professional). If you are considering a DIY project or searching for the ‘best cabinet painters near me‘, you want to make sure you get this project done the right way. Your kitchen is the heart of your home and your kitchen cabinets are the focal point. We paint hundreds of kitchens every year so we a unique view as to the most common concerns of our clients. I’ll also add a few things that you should be concerned about that you may not even realize.
Choosing a cabinet color that is not too ‘trendy’.
Selecting a color for your kitchen cabinet paint is difficult. The cabinets are a pretty large surface area so you have to make sure that the color not only looks good with the rest of your decor, but you’ll also need to make sure the color is one that you’ll love for a long time. A two-toned look with the island a different color or the lower cabinets a different color is really popular right now but will that still be true five years from now? Grays and blues are also becoming increasingly popular (white is still the most popular cabinet color) but some homeowners may find these shades to be too trendy. Your best bet to avoid a color that is too trendy is to go with a slight off-white and to make sure that it goes well with your countertops and flooring.
Will the paint on the cabinets last?
When cabinets are not painted correctly it can be a disaster. The last thing you want is peeling paint or paint that wears away easily. This is a very valid concern because it can seem relatively easy to paint kitchen cabinets but to do it correctly is a lot more difficult. Done correctly, paint should last at least 10 years on cabinets although you may get a few nicks and wear spots sooner than that. Painted cabinets can be touched up well if done correctly keeping them looking great for a long, long time.
Refinishing your kitchen cabinets is a labor intensive process when done right because of all of the prep work needed. Just getting the wood ready for priming and painting takes a long time. THEN you have to use the proper primer that will not only provide the correct adhesion but will also seal out the wood. If any of these important steps are skimped on, even with the best top coat, you are in for future problems.
One of the most common mistakes is applying a paint that is not meant for cabinetry. The paint will not stand up to the oils from your hands or the grease, etc that is common in a kitchen. Paints that are readily available and easy to apply are most likely not going to last. These paints are generally meant for the trim work in your home. Areas that are not going to be touched very often and certainly don’t get the wear and tear that the cupboards will. Instead be sure a wood refinishing product is used (like a 2k polyurethane or lacquer) and ideally one that is KCMA certified.
What is the interruption while the work is being done?
Most likely the reason you are thinking about painting your kitchen cabinets is because your kitchen is the room you use the most. You are constantly gathering and entertaining in the kitchen. So, the idea of a kitchen renovation brings with it the common concern of not being able to use your kitchen for a long time.
Luckily, a top-quality professional painting company will be able to get cabinet painting projects done pretty quickly. Because we paint so many kitchen cabinets in the Cleveland area every year, we have our process down really well. It takes us a week to do almost every cabinet painting project. We find that this time frame is pretty common with most reputable painting companies around the country.
Can all cabinets be painted?
No. Certain types of cabinets should not be painted. Thermofoil cabinets should not be painted. This article does a good job of going in depth on what thermofoil cabinets are but a quick summary is that thermofoil cabinets are a mdf core with a thin layer of vinyl sealed tightly to the core. These are inexpensive cabinets and unfortunately cannot be refinished.
Another type of cabinet that should not be painted is laminate cabinets. Also, a lower quality cabinet (although better than Thermofoil), laminate cabinets are made similarly. They consist of a thin layer that is over the core. While laminate doors are generally better than Thermofoil, neither will paint very well.
Both are extremely slick surfaces, which make it very difficult to get proper adhesion. It is very similar to painting glass. It is going to peel off. It is only a matter of time.
In general, pretty much every type of real wood cabinet can be painted if done correctly.
Hopefully, we were able to address some of the concerns that you have while considering if you should paint your cabinets. If you are located in the greater Cleveland, Ohio area, we would love an opportunity to speak with you about your cabinet painting project. Our complimentary color consultation with a professional interior designer and our Lifetime Touch-Up Promise will hopefully help alleviate any concerns that you may have. You can schedule a free quote here.