11 Cabinet Painting Mistakes Amateurs Make

Are you thinking about painting your kitchen or bathroom cabinets? Painting can save you lots of money compared to replacing them, but if they’re not painted correctly, you’ll end up with a mess.

Even though you may be good at painting walls, cabinets pose their own challenges. Cabinets are made of different types of materials and finishes. There are steps and techniques that need to be followed in order to have a quality finish. Even the most patient and capable DIY-er may wonder why they undertook such a time-consuming and labor-intensive project.

Benefits of Painting Cabinets

Painting can be a great way to refresh your kitchen or bathroom. A few of the advantages include:

  • Gives the room a whole new look and feel at an affordable cost
  • Much less expensive than refacing or replacing your cabinets
  • Quality paint provides a look that lasts as long as new cabinets.
  • Increases your home's value.
  • The project can be completed in under a week.

Cabinets Need Special Attention

There are certain painting mistakes that will negatively affect the outcome of your painted cabinets. Avoid the following issues to improve your chances of getting the best results.

  1. You Rush the Process. Cabinet painting is not a weekend project. The process can span several days because of all the steps required. If you don’t allow sufficient time to complete each step (especially the preparation of the surfaces), your project will fail.
  2. You Don’t Remove the Doors and Drawers. Leaving these in place makes it very difficult to get all areas painted with precision. You also need to remove the hardware—handles, drawer pulls, and hinges. This will eliminate the need to cut around them and provide a flat surface to paint.
  3. You Fail to Label Everything. As you’re removing the cabinet doors, drawers, and hardware, make sure you know where to reinstall them. Store the hardware during the painting process.
  4. You Don’t Clean the Surface. You may think your cabinets are clean, but they still have accumulated a coating over the years. You’ll need to use a degreaser to remove all oily residue or the paint won’t adhere properly.
  5. You Don’t Repair Imperfections. If there are cracks, holes, or gauges in the cabinet surface, you’ll need to fill them. You can use wood filler or caulking, then scrape the excess off to create a smooth surface.
  6. You Skip the Sanding. Most cabinets have a glossy or semi-glossy finish. Sanding is necessary to take the gloss to a matte finish to ensure the paint adheres properly.
  7. The Area Isn’t Dust-Free. Although you may not think your room is dusty, even a few motes of it will impact your cabinets. Areas where dust settles will look grainy. Make sure you thoroughly vacuum the room and wipe down your cabinets prior to proceeding.
  8. You Don’t Use Primer. This is a very important step in the process that cannot be skipped if you want the paint job to last. Using a stain-inhibiting primer can prevent stains on the original surface from bleeding through.
  9. You Use Cheap Paint. Don’t try to save a few pennies with less expensive paint. Painting cabinets should last for years if done properly, but cheap paint will chip and flake.
  10. You Don’t Allow the Paint to Cure. It’s hard to tolerate cabinet doors lying around, but don’t rush to put them back on too soon. Even one little smudge can ruin the entire surface, requiring you to sand and repaint all over again.
  11. You Pick the Wrong Color. Take your time deciding on the color for your cabinets. You don’t want to redo the painting process because you don’t like the shade. Try out the color on one door to see if you like it. Or you can even buy some poster board and paint it. Check out these cabinet color trends for 2020 for ideas.
Choose HBP painting

A Professional Cabinet Painter Is a Better Choice

Painting cabinets successfully is a difficult task that requires precision, knowledge and the right tools. Yes, you can save money doing it yourself, but the results may be less than ideal. It also requires a lot of time and effort that you may not be able or willing to spare.

Painting cabinets also requires protecting the area where the cabinet painting happens. You don’t want to risk paint splattering all over your floors, countertops, or appliances. Although the process should not be rushed, professionals will get the job done much more quickly than an amateur can. They’ll also clean up the area, so you don’t have to.

HBP Painting is an expert cabinet painting contractor. We can convert your current faded and outdated cabinets into beautifully painted ones that last for many years.

We have been around since 1983 as a locally owned and operated painting contractor. Besides professional cabinet painting, we also offer residential and commercial interior and exterior painting and can apply beautiful unique faux finishes.