Problems With Refacing Kitchen Cabinets: What Are The Cons of Refacing Kitchen Cabinets?

Problems With Refacing Kitchen Cabinets Refacing kitchen cabinets can present problems such as limited design options, potential for expensive mistakes, and reduced durability. Refacing kitchen cabinets involves covering the existing cabinet frames with a veneer or laminate and replacing the doors and drawer fronts.

While this can be a cost-effective way to update the look of your kitchen, it also comes with limitations. One of the main problems with refacing kitchen cabinets is the limited design options available. Unlike with a full remodel where you can choose new cabinet styles and configurations, refacing restricts you to the existing cabinet layout.

Additionally, mistakes during the refacing process can be costly to fix, especially if you accidentally damage the cabinet frames. Lastly, refacing may not provide the same level of durability as replacing the cabinets entirely, as the existing cabinet structures are not reinforced or upgraded.

Problems With Refacing Kitchen Cabinets
Problems With Refacing Kitchen Cabinets

Common Mistakes To Avoid When Refacing Kitchen Cabinets

Refacing kitchen cabinets may seem like an easy task, but there are common mistakes that you should avoid. These problems include improper measurements, poor quality materials, and not hiring a professional for the job. By avoiding these mistakes, you can ensure a successful cabinet refacing project.

Refacing kitchen cabinets can be a cost-effective way to give your kitchen a fresh look without the hefty price tag of a full renovation. However, it’s important to approach this project with caution to ensure the best possible results. Here are some common mistakes to avoid when refacing kitchen cabinets:

Rushing The Preparation Process

  • Neglecting to properly clean and degrease the cabinet surfaces before starting the refacing process can lead to poor adhesion of new materials.
  • Failing to remove all hardware, including hinges and handles, before beginning the refacing project can result in an uneven finish and difficulty in achieving a seamless look.
  • Skipping the step of sanding the cabinet surfaces can prevent the new materials from adhering properly, leading to peeling or bubbling in the future.
  • Forgetting to fill in any visible dents, scratches, or holes in the cabinet surfaces before applying new materials can result in an unsightly finish.

Ignoring The Importance Of Quality Materials

  • Opting for low-quality veneers or laminate materials may save money initially but can result in a less durable and less visually appealing finish.
  • Neglecting to choose materials that match the style and color scheme of the rest of the kitchen can create a disjointed and unattractive overall look.
  • Choosing thin or flimsy materials can lead to warping or cracking over time, reducing the lifespan of the refaced cabinets.

Underestimating The Importance Of Measurements

  • Failing to accurately measure the cabinet doors and drawer fronts before ordering new materials can result in ill-fitting pieces that are difficult to install and do not line up properly.
  • Neglecting to account for any irregularities or quirks in the cabinet layout can lead to gaps or misaligned pieces during the installation process.
  • Ignoring the need for precise measurements of hardware locations, such as hinges and handles, can result in unsightly and inconvenient placement of these elements on the refaced cabinets.

By avoiding these common mistakes, you can ensure a successful and visually pleasing outcome when refacing your kitchen cabinets. Taking the time to properly prepare, choose quality materials, and accurately measure will result in a beautiful transformation that enhances the appearance and functionality of your kitchen.

Understanding The Impact Of Rushing The Preparation Process

Rushing the preparation process when refacing kitchen cabinets can lead to various problems. It is important to avoid skipping crucial steps like thorough cleaning, sanding, and priming, as it can result in poor adhesion, peeling, and overall unsatisfactory results. Taking the time to properly prep ensures a successful cabinet refacing project.

Lack Of Proper Cleaning And Sanding

When it comes to refacing kitchen cabinets, rushing through the preparation process can lead to several problems that may affect the overall outcome. One of the key aspects that is often overlooked is the lack of proper cleaning and sanding.

Ignoring these steps can result in a subpar finish and shorter lifespan for your cabinets.

  • Cleaning: Thoroughly cleaning the cabinets before starting the refacing process is crucial. This ensures the removal of any dirt, grease, or residue that might interfere with the adhesion of the new materials. Skipping this step can lead to poor adhesion and peeling of the refacing materials over time.
  • Sanding: Properly sanding the cabinet surfaces is essential for creating a smooth and even base. Sanding not only removes the existing finish but also helps to roughen the surface, allowing the refacing materials to adhere better. Rushing through this step can compromise the quality of the resulting finish and make it more prone to chipping and peeling.

Taking the time to clean and sand your kitchen cabinets thoroughly before refacing is crucial for achieving a professional and durable outcome. Skipping or rushing through these steps can lead to dissatisfaction with the final result and may even require a redo in the near future.

Skipping The Priming Step

Another problem that arises from rushing the preparation process is the temptation to skip the priming step. Priming is an essential part of the refacing process as it provides a solid base for the adhesion of the new materials and ensures a smooth and uniform finish.

Consider the following points:

  • Adhesion: Primer enhances the bond between the original surface and the new refacing materials. Without proper adhesion, the refacing materials may not stick securely, resulting in peeling or bubbling over time.
  • Uniformity: Applying primer creates a uniform surface, which helps to hide any imperfections or color differences in the original cabinets. Skipping this step can lead to a patchy and inconsistent appearance, detracting from the overall aesthetic.
  • Durability: Primer also helps to seal and protect the wood, preventing moisture or other elements from damaging the cabinets. Rushing through the process by skipping primer compromises this vital protection layer.

By taking the time to properly prime your cabinets before refacing, you ensure better adhesion, uniformity, and long-lasting durability. Avoid the temptation to rush this step, as it is a crucial part of achieving high-quality results.

Inadequate Surface Repair

A rushed preparation process often results in inadequate surface repair, which can significantly impact the final outcome of refacing kitchen cabinets.

  • Filling and repairing: Before refacing, it is important to fill any dents, scratches, or other surface imperfections. This step ensures a smooth and flawless appearance once the refacing materials are applied. Rushing through this process can result in visible imperfections, detracting from the overall look of the cabinets.
  • Inspecting for damage: It is essential to thoroughly inspect the cabinets for any signs of damage, such as water stains or warping. Neglecting to address these issues before refacing can lead to further deterioration and an overall compromised result.
  • Addressing structural problems: Rushing the preparation process may cause you to overlook any structural issues with the cabinets. These issues should be addressed before refacing to ensure the cabinets are in good condition and can support the new materials properly.

Taking the time to adequately repair and prepare the surfaces of your kitchen cabinets is vital for achieving a high-quality refacing project. By paying attention to these details and avoiding rushing, you can ensure a beautiful and long-lasting outcome.

The Importance Of Quality Materials In Cabinet Refacing

Refacing kitchen cabinets can lead to problems, but one key factor that can make a difference is using quality materials. Opting for high-quality materials ensures a durable and long-lasting cabinet refacing solution that adds value to your kitchen.

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When it comes to refacing kitchen cabinets, using high-quality materials is crucial for achieving long-lasting and visually appealing results. Cutting corners by opting for inferior veneers or laminates, using low-quality adhesives, or neglecting the hardware quality can lead to several problems that may undermine the success of your cabinet refacing project.

Choosing Inferior Veneers Or Laminates:

  • Opting for cheap veneers or laminates may initially save you money, but they are prone to wear and tear over time.
  • Inferior veneers or laminates can chip, peel, or discolor easily, diminishing the overall aesthetics of your kitchen.
  • Poor quality veneers or laminates may lack the durability needed to withstand daily use, leading to frequent replacements or repairs.

Using Low-Quality Adhesives:

  • Low-quality adhesives often lack the necessary strength to securely bond the veneers or laminates to the cabinet frames.
  • Weak adhesives can result in peeling or loose veneers, compromising the structural integrity of the cabinets.
  • Inadequate bonding can allow moisture or humidity to seep in, causing the veneers or laminates to warp or bubble.

Neglecting The Hardware Quality:

  • Overlooking the quality of cabinet hardware such as hinges, pulls, and knobs can lead to functionality issues down the line.
  • Low-quality hardware may not operate smoothly or endure regular usage, causing inconvenience and frustration.
  • Inferior hardware materials can corrode or break easily, requiring frequent replacements and incurring additional costs.

Investing in high-quality materials for cabinet refacing is essential to ensure a successful and long-lasting transformation of your kitchen. By choosing superior veneers or laminates, using reliable adhesives, and selecting durable hardware, you prioritize visual appeal, functionality, and longevity. Don’t compromise on the quality of materials when it comes to cabinet refacing – choose wisely to enjoy beautiful and functional cabinets for years to come.

Avoiding Costly Mistakes By Prioritizing Measurements

Prioritizing measurements is crucial to avoid costly mistakes when refacing kitchen cabinets. By accurately measuring dimensions and planning accordingly, you can prevent issues such as ill-fitting doors or mismatched hardware, ultimately saving time and money on cabinet renovations.

Failure To Accurately Measure Cabinet Dimensions

  • One of the primary problems with refacing kitchen cabinets is the failure to accurately measure the cabinet dimensions. This oversight can lead to numerous issues and costly mistakes.
  • Inaccurate measurements can result in ill-fitting veneers: When the measurements are not precise, the veneers may not cover the cabinet surfaces properly. This can leave visible gaps or uneven edges, compromising the overall appearance of the cabinets.
  • Misaligned doors and drawers: Incorrect measurements can contribute to poorly aligned doors and drawers. This means they may not open and close smoothly, causing inconvenience and frustration in daily kitchen activities.
  • Difficulty in finding compatible replacement components: Inaccurate measurements can make it challenging to find suitable replacement components, such as hinges or handles. This can result in additional expenses and delays in the refacing process.
  • Wasted time and money: If the measurements are wrong, the refacing project may need to be restarted or extra materials may need to be purchased. This can waste both time and money, prolonging the completion of the kitchen renovation.

Overlooking The Need For Trimming And Adjustments

  • Another common issue is overlooking the need for trimming and adjustments during the cabinet refacing process.
  • Ensuring proper alignment: Trimming and adjustments are crucial to ensure that the veneer aligns correctly with the cabinet structure. Neglecting this step can result in uneven surfaces, visible gaps, or misaligned patterns.
  • Creating a seamless finish: Proper trimming and adjustments contribute to achieving a seamless finish during the refacing process. This means that the newly applied veneers will blend in seamlessly with the existing cabinet surfaces, enhancing the overall aesthetics of the kitchen.
  • Preventing functional issues: Neglecting trimming and adjustments can lead to functional issues, such as doors that don’t close properly or drawers that get stuck. By addressing these details, you can ensure smooth functionality after the refacing is complete.

Disregarding The Impact Of Poorly Aligned Doors And Drawers

  • Disregarding the impact of poorly aligned doors and drawers is another significant problem that can arise when refacing kitchen cabinets. Here’s why it’s essential to consider this aspect:
  • Aesthetics and visual appeal: Poorly aligned doors and drawers can significantly diminish the visual appeal of the refaced cabinets. Crooked doors or unevenly spaced drawers create a haphazard look, detracting from the overall beauty of the kitchen.
  • Functionality and usability: Misaligned doors and drawers can cause practical problems in the kitchen. Doors that don’t close properly may swing open unexpectedly, and drawers that are misaligned can be difficult to open or close smoothly. This can hinder everyday tasks and make cooking and organizing a hassle.
  • Long-term durability: Improper alignment can put stress on the cabinet structure, potentially leading to premature wear and tear. Over time, this can impact the durability and lifespan of the refaced cabinets.

By prioritizing accurate measurements, considering the need for trimming and adjustments, and acknowledging the impact of poorly aligned doors and drawers, you can avoid costly mistakes and ensure a successful kitchen cabinet refacing project.

Investing In Professional Help For Successful Cabinet Refacing

Investing in professional help can solve the problems when refacing kitchen cabinets, ensuring a successful outcome. With skilled assistance, you can overcome issues such as uneven surfaces, color mismatches, or improper installation for a seamless cabinet transformation.

Refacing kitchen cabinets can be a cost-effective way to transform the look of your kitchen without the hassle and expense of a complete cabinet replacement. While it may seem like a simple task, there are several problems that can arise when attempting to refinish cabinets on your own.

That’s why investing in professional help for cabinet refacing is often the best decision. Hiring a reputable and experienced refacing company can ensure that the job is done correctly, efficiently, and with long-lasting results.

Benefits Of Hiring A Professional Refacing Company

  • Expertise and knowledge: Professional refacing companies have the expertise and knowledge to assess your cabinet’s condition, determine the best materials and techniques for refacing, and deliver a high-quality end result.
  • Time and cost savings: By hiring professionals, you can save yourself the time and effort of researching, purchasing, and applying materials. Professional refacing companies also have established relationships with suppliers, often receiving discounts that they pass on to their customers.
  • Customization options: A professional refacing company can provide a wide range of customization options, ensuring that your kitchen cabinets reflect your personal style and taste. They can help you choose the right door styles, colors, finishes, and hardware to achieve the desired look.
  • Precision and detail: Cabinet refacing requires precision and attention to detail to create a seamless and cohesive appearance. Professional refacing companies have the skills to achieve precise measurements, align doors and drawers perfectly, and ensure that the final result looks flawless.
  • Enhanced durability: Professional refacing involves using high-quality materials that can withstand the rigors of everyday use. They know how to properly prepare the cabinet surfaces, apply adhesive, and secure the new veneers or laminates to ensure long-lasting durability.
  • Minimal disruption: Attempting to reface cabinets on your own can lead to a lengthy and disruptive process. Professional refacing companies have the tools, experience, and efficiency to complete the job in a timely manner, minimizing kitchen downtime.

Finding The Right Refacing Contractor

  • Research: Begin your search by researching reputable refacing contractors in your area. Look for companies with positive customer reviews, professional certifications, and a portfolio of past projects.
  • Request quotes: Reach out to multiple contractors and request detailed quotes for your specific project. Compare their pricing, materials, turnaround time, and any warranties offered.
  • Check references: Ask for references from previous customers and take the time to contact them. Inquire about their experience with the contractor, the quality of workmanship, and their overall satisfaction.
  • Licensing and insurance: Verify that the refacing contractor is appropriately licensed and insured. This ensures that they meet industry standards and protects you from any liability in case of accidents or damages.
  • Face-to-face consultation: Schedule a face-to-face consultation with the contractor to discuss your project in detail. This will give you an opportunity to assess their professionalism, communication skills, and how well they understand your needs.

Ensuring Long-Lasting Results With Expert Installation

  • Proper preparation: Before installation, the existing cabinet surfaces must be thoroughly cleaned, sanded, and primed. This ensures proper adhesion and helps achieve a smooth and flawless finished look.
  • Meticulous installation: Only experienced professionals have the know-how to properly align doors and drawers, ensuring they open smoothly and close snugly. They will also make any necessary adjustments to ensure a perfect fit.
  • Quality materials: Professional refacing companies use high-quality materials such as solid wood veneers, durable laminates, and premium finishes. This guarantees that your cabinets will not only look great but also withstand everyday use.
  • Attention to detail: From measuring and aligning surfaces to handling corners and edges, professional installers pay close attention to every detail. This ensures that the refaced cabinets look like they were custom crafted for your kitchen.
  • Final touches: After installation, a professional refacing company will clean up the workspace, leaving your kitchen clean and ready to use. They will also provide any necessary instructions for proper care and maintenance to ensure the longevity of your refaced cabinets.

Investing in professional help for your cabinet refacing project can save you time, money, and frustration while ensuring a beautiful and durable outcome. Take the time to find the right refacing contractor who understands your vision and has the expertise to make it a reality.

With expert installation and attention to detail, you can enjoy the benefits of a transformed kitchen that will stand the test of time.

Frequently Asked Questions On Problems With Refacing Kitchen Cabinets

What Are The Cons Of Refacing Kitchen Cabinets?

Refacing kitchen cabinets has a few downsides. First, it may be costly compared to other renovation options. Second, the results may not be as durable as replacing the cabinets completely. Third, if the cabinets are in poor condition, refacing may not be the best solution as it won’t address structural issues.

Fourth, the process can be time-consuming and disruptive, as professionals need to remove and replace cabinet doors and drawer fronts. Additionally, matching new veneers or laminates to the existing cabinets can be challenging, resulting in an uneven appearance. Furthermore, refacing may limit your options for changing the layout or design of your kitchen.

Lastly, if you’re planning to sell your home in the near future, potential buyers may prefer new cabinets, so refacing may not add significant value to your property.

Is It A Good Idea To Reface Kitchen Cabinets?

Refacing kitchen cabinets is a great idea. It’s cost-effective and can give your kitchen a fresh look. Refacing involves changing the cabinet doors and drawer fronts while keeping the existing cabinet boxes. With a wide range of door styles, colors, and finishes available, you can easily achieve the desired aesthetic.

This process also allows you to upgrade hardware, such as hinges and handles, to enhance functionality. By choosing to reface, you save money compared to a full cabinet replacement. It’s a quicker and less disruptive option, as there is no need to remove and reinstall the entire cabinet structure.

Refacing is a practical solution for those who are happy with the current layout of their kitchen but want to update its appearance.

How Long Does Kitchen Cabinet Refacing Last?

Kitchen cabinet refacing typically lasts for 10-15 years, making it a long-lasting solution. By choosing this option, you can effectively rejuvenate the appearance of your kitchen cabinets without having to replace them completely. The process involves removing the cabinet doors and drawer fronts, then applying a new veneer or laminate to the existing cabinet frames.

This gives them a fresh new look while keeping the existing structure intact. Kitchen cabinet refacing is a cost-effective way to update your kitchen’s aesthetics and can be completed in a relatively short amount of time, often within a week or two.

With proper care and maintenance, your newly refaced cabinets can continue to enhance the beauty of your kitchen for many years to come.

Is It Better To Paint Or Reface Kitchen Cabinets?

Painting or refacing kitchen cabinets depends on your preferences and budget. Painting is a cost-effective option to transform the look of your cabinets by applying a fresh coat of paint. It is ideal if you want to change the color or update the style.

On the other hand, refacing involves replacing only the cabinet doors and drawer fronts while keeping the existing cabinet boxes. This option is more expensive but provides a complete makeover, including new doors, hardware, and veneers, while maintaining the original layout.

Refacing is a good choice if you like the current layout and the cabinets are in good condition. Overall, both options can give your kitchen a fresh and updated appearance, so choose the one that aligns with your preferences and budget.


Refacing kitchen cabinets is a popular and cost-effective option for many homeowners looking to update their kitchen without the need for a full remodel. However, it is important to consider the potential problems that may arise when choosing this route.

One of the main issues with refacing cabinets is that it may not always be the best solution for cabinets that are very old or have significant damage. Additionally, refacing cabinets can be a time-consuming process that requires careful attention to detail and expertise.

Another potential drawback is that refacing limits the design options compared to completely replacing cabinets. Moreover, the cost savings of refacing may not outweigh the long-term durability and functionality of new cabinets. Ultimately, when deciding whether to reface or replace kitchen cabinets, it is crucial to assess your specific needs and the condition of your cabinets to ensure you make the best choice for your kitchen renovation project.

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