Repainting kitchen cabinets is a cost effective and straightforward way to update a kitchen – to add light or color and to cover up wear and tear. However, as with any project, it is imperative that close attention is paid to proper preparation and use of an appropriate cabinet-grade paint.
Below are the steps we use at Catchlight Painting, to ensure a beautiful, lasting finish on kitchen cabinets:
Step 1. Clean, clean, and clean again to remove hand oils, cooking fumes, and food prep splashes.
Step 2. Sand with a fine sandpaper to etch the existing coating which is typically a very hard and durable lacquer or similar. Sand with the grain and make sure not to skip hard to reach areas like inside corners, edges and molding creases – this is where we see paint failures happen when we are called to fix someone else’s mistake.
Step 3. Prime. I know, you’ve sanded, so why is priming necessary? Because you want your project to be successful you want to be overly concerned about proper adhesion.
Step 4. Topcoat with a cabinet grade paint, not a typical trim or house paint. We like Benjamin Moore’s Advance paint – very low odor, easy to work with, available in various sheens – we’ve painted cabinets in every sheen – including flat!
Step 5. Repeat step number four.
Will the Finish Last?
If all steps above are followed, absolutely! Be mindful of high wear areas – cabinets below the sink that may get wet frequently; around older stoves that might leak heat,and around dishwasher vents that might subject a finish to steam discharge. We occasionally are called in to touch up cabinets we painted over 10 years ago but invariably the damage is due to heavy use or high impact.
To see more examples of kitchen’s we’ve painted you can visit our Kitchen Painting Portfolio here.
About the Author
Nigel Costolloe is the president of Catchlight Painting, a full-service residential and commercial painting company serving the Greater Boston Metropolitan Area. He is active regionally and nationally in the Painting and Decorating Contractors of America (PDCA) as a leader, speaker, and mentor.