167-refacing-kitchen-cabinetsLet me guess; you’re not a big fan of your kitchen. It’s okay. You can admit it.

Unless you designed it when your home was built, or you’ve already had it remodeled, it’s probably right that there’s something about your kitchen that makes you say “Ugh!” Maybe it’s the bright colored cabinets that the ‘70’s left behind, or maybe it’s the prominent wood grain that doesn’t fit your style.

Don’t condemn those cabinets just yet, though. You may be able to resuscitate them with an emergency cabinet refacing.

Refacing Vs. Replacing

Before you get too excited there is one thing you must know. If you’re kitchen suffers from a dysfunctional layout, refacing your cabinets will do nothing to help. We’ll say it again; cabinet refacing will not fix a poor kitchen layout. To fix this problem, you’ll need to look into a full kitchen remodel.

On the other hand, cabinets that are 20 to 30 years old are usually solidly built, so if you only wish to changecabinet designs and maybe make a few minor structure changes, cabinet refacing could be a perfect fit.

The How

Cabinet refacing is accomplished by replacing the cabinet doors and drawer fronts, with a style of your choosing, while also covering the existing cabinet box with a matching veneer. The usual steps are:

  1. The old doors and drawer fronts are removed and the face frames and side panels of the existing box are roughed up to help the veneer stick.
  2. The veneer is then glued – and sometimes nailed – to the box, the nail holes are filled, and the edges and seams are trimmed to be flush.
  3. The new doors and drawer fronts are then installed with new hardware and, often, new molding and a new toe-kick are added to finish the cabinet makeover.

During this process it’s easy to have drawers with old center glides updated with side-mounted tracks and to have custom drawer boxes built to help with kitchen organization.

With the savings that can sometimes come from choosing cabinet refacing over a full remodel, you can upgrade your countertops (with or without a new sink), put in new flooring to accent the cabinets, or add an island for more storage and counter space. Some installers will even build custom corner cabinets or over-the-fridge cabinets to add more storage and match the existing cabinets.

The Why

A full kitchen remodel isn’t for everyone. It can be an expensive undertaking and one that will interrupt your life during the process, whereas cabinet refacing usually takes only two to four days to complete and is sometimes – not always – cheaper than a full remodel.

As you consider the aspects of your kitchen that you really don’t like, ask yourself if a full remodel would be necessary. You may find that a simple cabinet refacing could turn those “Ugh’s” into “Ooo’s”.