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Should I Do Countertops Before Refinishing Cabinets?

In our experience, there has never been an issue with refinishing cabinets before or after new countertops are installed. The right countertop professional will be able to take their measurements, cut the stone, unglue the old countertop, and slide the new one perfectly in its place. This makes refinishing cabinets perfectly flexible especially when countertop vendors are booked out weeks in advance. 

The only exception to this rule would be if there was any demolishing or expanding of sections in the kitchen that interrupts the cabinets. For example, if a kitchen sink was being replaced with a large farmhouse sink that dips into the cabinetry, we would then need to wait until those renovations are complete before we refinish. The countertop specialist is likely going to saw off a small section of the lower cabinets to make room for the new sink. 

How do you prep a countertop for a cabinet refinish?

Preparation for refinishing is very easy and Resurrect Wood Refinishing provides clients with a checklist to assist them in case anything is forgotten. All items on countertops need to be removed. Everything can stay within the cabinets for the most part, we just require about 2” of space to tape paper inside the face frame. We cover all the floors, countertops, appliances, and adjacent walls with paper and plastic, so a customer does not have to worry about overspray. It is very easy to prepare countertops before a cabinet refinishing project. 

What should I pick first in kitchen remodel?

The only item in a kitchen remodel that may need to go first is the floors. If the floor is being ripped out and replaced, that must be taken care of before anything else. The demolition process can damage the bottom trim and toe kicks of the cabinets as well as the surrounding drywall. However even in this case we can always come out and touch up anything that may have been affected. We remain as flexible as possible, since we are often the only contractors who stick with a set schedule. We will make it work!

There is a rise in vinyl floor planks that cover the existing layout. If you are considering this option, then the remodeling process can be done in any order, as the new flooring will not affect the surrounding surfaces.

What is the most expensive part of a kitchen remodel?

Replacing cabinets with new is the most expensive part of any kitchen remodel. A standard 10 x 10 kitchen can be about $8,000-$12,000 for a basic plan with MDF cabinetry. Refinishing cabinets can cut this cost to a ⅓, turning what would have been the most expensive add-on to one of the cheapest. Refinishing not only preserves what is already there, and cuts labor costs down to 3-4 business days, but also minimizes unforeseen costs such as rewiring electrical, structural issues, drywall damage, or other plumbing issues one could discover in the middle of a total cabinet replacement project. 

Resurrect Wood Refinishing has designed its process to work within the home while it’s occupied. We hire skilled tradesmen only, they are all background checked, drug tested, and fully licensed and insured. We never hire any additional sub-contractors, helping us to keep our customer service quality at its highest. We strive to make your experience with our company the easiest,  most affordable and best part of your kitchen remodel project.

What is Cabinet Refinishing?

Cabinet Refinishing refers to the process of repairing and re-applying a coat of finish to the existing finish. It is a much more durable process than painting, and does not require any sanding or harsh chemical stripping. The base chemical of the product used in refinishing is called a polyurethane acrylic. It is a tintable, water-based, non-toxic solution which can be mixed to look like any paint color or stain. It is higher quality than any paint that can be purchased at a store, and the products Resurrect Wood Refinishing use, are the best from vendors selected through years of experience. 

The goal of cabinet refinishing is to restore the wood to appear as close to a factory finish condition as possible. This process restarts the shelf life of the cabinets, proving to be a valuable investment when compared to ripping out and purchasing new cabinets, and has made painting cabinets a often outdated practice.

What is the difference between painting and refinishing cabinets?

The difference between painting and refinishing is the product. Both processes require heavy masking and preparation, which involve covering every visible surface that is not being addressed. Resurrect Wood Refinishing sprays their product in order to create an even, balanced, clean look. Unlike paint, the water-based solution that is used in refinishing is odorless and non-toxic. The polyurethane acrylic is water soluble while maintaining high pigmentation, giving control of it’s thickness to Resurrect technician’s. Thus allowing plenty of control in application, and preventing the occurrence of paint clumps or drips due to overspraying or thickened paint. 

In general most painted cabinet applications only last 2-3 years until chipping, cracking, and peeling begins, whereas refinished cabinets can last as long as the life of the cabinets themselves under normal wear and tear. The poly acrylic however, is designed to bond with the organic nature of wood. 

How do you make old wood cabinets look modern?

Real wood cabinets are becoming obsolete to the average buyer as prices of materials continue to increase since the pandemic. Lumber has increased 288% since 2019. When we think of Modern and updated, we sometimes pigeon hole our minds into thinking new, but the reality of the quality of new is just nowhere near what you likely already have. Chances are your cabinets just look “old”, due to years of grime, oil build up, and fading finish or outdated profiles and color. The truth of the matter is that solid wooden cabinetry can last many decades, and even though the finish may have dulled out, the structural integrity is still strong. It is a craftsmanship that is unfortunately being replaced by laminate or cheap MDF alternatives, that can be bought at Big Box Home Improvement Stores. 

Right now in the Florida Market, builders are making significant savings by selling these poorer products to customers than investing in wood. That is why refinishing is a more valuable service than ever before. Many of the customers that reach out to Resurrect Wood Refinishing still have oak or maple cabinets. A thorough cleaning and refinishing can modernize any old looking cabinet. A change of color to the finish can suddenly make those 30 year-old cabinets look incredibly sleek and stylish, with added durability to last. And if you really just hate the style, consider ordering new doors in our redooring service. That is one fast way to make those cabinets look like what’s new and in style without the price tag and lower quality of new cabinets. Plus, if one decides to sell the home, having genuine wood cabinets is going to raise the overall value, returning your investment with profit.

Is it cheaper to buy new cabinets or refinish?

While the product price for new cabinets have gone down by using cheaper material, the labor to install them has remained the same: expensive and prone to many upcharges. A person may find affordable new MDF cabinets online, but whether or not plumbing or electrical issues arise can only be discovered in the middle of a project after the contract is signed. These new charges will be added to the final bill and the cheap DIY project has now turned into a major investment with no profitable return due to the cheap quality product.

Whether the prospective new cabinets are of excellent or poor quality, refinishing will always be the cheaper alternative to installing new cabinets. It is a process not only designed to rejuvenate what is already there for ⅓ of the cost, but refreshes the space and creates a lasting impression that our work is original to the home. 

Can I just change cabinet doors?

Changing cabinet doors is certainly an option and a service we provide. Resurrect Wood Refinishing is able to provide clients with any style they desire in addition to coloring and glazing, all without ripping apart a single cabinet box. While replacing the cabinet doors bumps up the budget a couple thousand dollars from a standard color change refinish, customers can look forward to significant savings by pursuing new, solid wood doors over risking the disaster that can come from installing new cabinets. If the structure is sound and the original layout is pleasing, refinishing and purchasing new doors is definitely the way to go.