When it is time to redecorate your kitchen, instead of changing the cabinets, paint them. Painting is easy, fun and if you are careful it will give you a beautiful looking kitchen at a fraction of the replacement costs.
Plus, you can paint those cabinets any color you want. That is the great aspect of painting. It doesn’t cost you extra to have the color you want. In addition to all of that, you can do it yourself and save even more money.
To learn how to paint your kitchen cabinets, just continue to read our article. It provides the information you need to give those cabinets a nice finish and a perfect look.
The steps to take to paint your kitchen cabinets
There are not that many steps in this process. Each one is not complicated or very difficult to do. Most of the steps just take a little extra time but that time is needed so you can have great results.
Step #1: Pick the color(s) you want
This is a very important step as it will determine whether you will love or hate the look of your kitchen when done. Find the right colors that go together and won’t clash with the colors on your appliances or walls.
Plus, you can choose to use more than one color to make sure your kitchen has that perfect look.
Step #2: Do thorough prep work
Your painting result depends entirely on how well you do your prep work. There are several tasks in this step of the painting task that cannot be ignored.
First, remove all your drawers and doors- It is easier to paint without having obstacles in the way. Plus, it is easier to paint the faces on these cabinet items when they are not in their normal places.
Second, remove all the hardware- knobs, hinges, ext., need to be removed so that they do not get covered in paint. Put them in a secure container so that you do not lose them.
Third, do the boring sanding work- this job will be done twice but it has to be done if you want perfect looking cabinets. The first time you sand is to get all the nicks and scrapes out so that you are painting a smooth surface and that your cabinets will look like new.
Fourth, cover everything- once the sanding is done, cover all those items, countertops, appliances, backsplash, and ceiling, that you do not want to get paint on. You can use masking tape, tarp, old blankets, newspaper, butcher paper, and other materials to get this task completed.
Fifth, fill in those cracks-some good wood putty will do the trick. All you need is your finger and the can of putty. Then go over those cabinets to fill in every crack. Sand the putty down before you start painting to smooth out the wood.
Sixth, gather your tools- get your primer, paint, buckets, paint brushes, and so on. Everything you need to paint with should be in the kitchen. Don’t forget a step ladder if you are not tall enough to reach the top of the upper cabinets.
Step #3: Put on your primer
This is always needed as it helps cover up any marks, stains, or cracks you do not want anyone to know are there. Do a test in a hidden section to make sure the primer will cover everything.
Also, make sure your cabinets are clean and free of dirt. The primer and the paint won’t stick to dirty, oily surfaces. If they are not, then take the time to clean them. Then cover all the cabinets you want to paint with primer.
Step #4: Let the primer dry & sand again
This coat should take roughly 24 hours to dry and when it is, grab some very fine grit sandpaper and smooth out any rough spots. After sanding, wipe the cabinets with a damp cloth to pick up all the sawdust you created.
Again, you do not want any dirt or other particles interfering with your painting objective.
Step #5: Paint
This should be done in 2 coats and take your time. Paint all drawers, doors, and cabinets you want to be covered, and let the first coat dry thoroughly before adding the second coat of paint.
Rollers do not leave brush marks and you can get rollers in different widths to make sure every part of your cabinets, drawers, and doors are covered evenly. If you like using brushes, then watch your paint strokes.
Go in one direction and apply the paint thick enough to cover those brush marks. Once the first coat is done, give it about 24 to 48 hours to dry completely before applying the second coat.
For some tight spots or special designs, you should use a tiny brush to make sure no spot is left unpainted
Tips to make your kitchen cabinet painting task easier
Pick the tips that will help you the most. You do not need to use all of them, just the ones that will ease any difficulties you may come across during your painting time.
#1. Use rosin paper– or you can use what is called brown builder’s paper. Either one will do and they come in approx. 36-inch by 140-foot rolls. Save the leftover roll for other projects that create a mess.
#2. Remove all hardware, etc.- this makes painting easier plus you do not have painted hinges, knobs, and other items you need to clean after you are done. Do not create more work for yourself.
#3. Label everything – before you remove drawers and doors, make a sketch of your kitchen and then label those items. This will help you when it comes time to put them back where they belong. The drawing does not have to be neat, just accurate
#4. Remove the grease – your cabinets are in the kitchen and that means they will have grease on them. You can use degreasing dishwashing liquid or TSP. The latter is better but if you do not have it around the house, use the liquid soap.
#5. Sand gently – you do not need a lot of pressure on the cabinets to smooth them out. Gentle sanding will do the trick and start with 100 grit sandpaper and move up to the finer grits as you go.
#6. Speed up the drying time – you can do this by picking a primer that is known to be fast drying. read the label to make sure it is a primer that does not take a long time to dry. Also, use an oil-based primer instead of a water-based option.
#7. Pores need filling – this is up to your preference, of course, but you should take the time to fill in those pores if you do not want the grains showing at all. This is accomplished by using spackle or just extra coats of primer until all the pores are filled
#8. Vacuum before wiping – to get all the sand particles off the cabinets, use your vacuum first and then use the wet cloth. This way you are not leaving any of those particles behind.
#9. Use standoffs to support doors – when you paint your cabinet doors you need a place to set them so they can dry easily. Standoffs can be pre-bought and made of plastic or you can build your own. These standoffs make it easier to paint the edges.
#10. Use a bright light – depending on the color of your cabinets, it may be easy to miss dents and cracks or small holes. Use a bright light to see everything. That way you do not miss a dent, etc., and mess up the look of your cabinets.
#11. Follow the grain – this is the most important tip of all. Going against the grain may give you an outside-the-box look but it is not the way to paint wood. Paint in the direction of the grain all the time.
#12. Pick the right paint – read the labels carefully You want paint that is designed to cover woodwork and cabinets. Also, gloss will expose your cabinets’ flaws. Try to go with a muted type of paint option. Add a little paint conditioner to get a smoother dry look.
#13. Use a strainer – straining paint is one way to make sure you do not run into any lumps and ruin your work. Pour the paint through the strainer into another bucket to get all the lumps out.
#14. Buy top – quality equipment- the cheaper brushes and rollers can leave hairs, marks where you do not want them. use the best brushes and rollers to avoid marring your paint effort. This will cost more but it will save you time and money from not having to redo your work
#15. Watch the edges – this is an area where too much paint can be applied. Wipe the excess off so it won’t drip or create a paint ridge that needs to be sanded off.
#16. Don’t want the work? – use a paint sprayer instead. This will be faster and the paint goes on evenly if you are skilled at using one of these sprayers. A steady hand is all that is needed and a little patience. Also, thin the paint just right to make sure it goes on evenly all the time.
Some final words
Painting your kitchen cabinets is not an afternoon job when you are bored. It takes time to create that perfect look. Make sure to block out enough time so you are not rushed and can be careful as you work.
You may have to eat out or have food delivered during this painting task. Check out some Best Paint Sprayer for Cabinets.