If you’re tired of the color of your kitchen cabinet doors, painting them is an inexpensive and easy way to make a big impact. Before you start the project, take the time to clean the surface thoroughly, removing any grease or grime that may have built up over time. Then, sand the cabinet doors lightly. A pad sander with 220-grit paper makes quick work of flat areas, while a sanding sponge is good for curved edges and recesses. If the finish is in good shape, you can skip this step, but it’s always best to sand before applying primer and paint.
Choose a quality primer kitchen cabinet door painting that’s compatible with your top coat paint. Also, be sure to read the label for recommended drying times, as this will vary depending on temperature and humidity in your working area. For the best results, plan to do this job in warm weather and in a climate-controlled workspace.
Next, you’ll want to remove the cabinet doors and drawer fronts from their hinges and hardware, if necessary. If you’re planning to reinstall the same hardware, number each piece of the hardware as it comes off and place a strip of painters tape with a corresponding number underneath where the hinge goes on the cabinet door. This will save you a lot of time when it comes to rehanging the doors and drawers later on.
If you’re planning to reinstall new hardware, make sure it’s cleaned and primed before you begin the painting process. If you don’t, the hardware could pick up the smell of the old oil-based primer, preventing the new paint from adhering properly. Also, clean the hinges and screws before you repaint them. You might even want to consider using a spray can of oil-based primer and a brush to recoat the hinges and screws.
Mask off the walls and flooring, if desired, to protect them from drips and dust as you work. You can purchase plastic sheeting at any home improvement store, and it’s worth the expense to keep your countertops and floors looking nice while you’re doing a major project like this. If you don’t have any tarps, you can use newspapers or old blankets.
You can either use a brush or a foam roller to apply your primer and top coats. A foam roller works well for larger surfaces, including cabinet doors and drawers, while a brush is good for smaller details, such as the panel raise edges on each door. If you’re using a sprayer, be sure to read the instructions carefully before beginning.
When you’re ready to begin painting, it’s easiest to do one side at a time. Begin with the back of the cabinet door, let it dry and then flip it over and paint the front. This will give the back of the door time to fully dry and prevent it from sticking to the front when you try to hang it.
Once the doors and drawers are painted, you can reattach the hinges, reinstall the handles and knobs and rehang them on the cabinet boxes. If you’ve numbered each of the hinges, reattaching them will be much easier.