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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a valuable investment when compared to ripping out and purchasing new cabinets, and has made painting cabinets a often outdated practice.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. 

How much does it cost to replace cabinets?

Remodeling kitchens are one of the most expensive investments in the life of a homeowner. The kitchen is a valuable space. It serves not only for the practical function of cooking and serving, but as the catering centerpiece in many homes. Traditionally, the dining room or living room was separate when entertaining guests. The trend in the past decade has been to open the space, blending the living room and kitchen together as the focal point to any occasion. This has made cabinets much more desirable ascetically, which is why Resurrect Wood Refinishing has been determined to provide a durable and cosmetic overhaul without needing to replace cabinets completely. 

Based on a Big Box Home Improvement store estimate calculator (which does not include the hidden upcharges), a standard 10 x 10 L-shaped kitchen is going to be approximately $7,100-$8,900 to demo and install new cabinets. This number is for their “basic” cabinet boxes, which are described as “furniture board construction.” This is a thin MDF board with a maple veneer glued on top to mimic the appearance of wood veneer. It is essentially a sticker. It is not real solid wood and incredibly weak against accidents in the kitchen, sagging from weight, and peeling from the Florida humidity. Most importantly you can only construct with them one time. You have one chance to drill a screw in and that’s it. You can never upgrade them, never redoor them, likely any changes at all will require ripping out again and replacing. The quote for this style of cabinet is only 30” tall and includes basic hinges. Handles are not included in this price and it must be stressed that any plumbing or electrical problems that are discovered during installation will be costly as well as wallboard damage, exposing old broken tiles or backsplash etc.

Working with the same layout, their most expensive offering is going to be approximately $17,000-$21,300. This price increase is only because of decorative trim options and not genuine quality material. The boxes are now plywood with a maple veneer glued on top. They are still not real wood cabinet boxes and suffer the same risks as described with the basic tier format. The hinges have been upgraded to soft-close and the cabinet boxes extend to the ceiling. The cabinet doors may appear stylish, but it’s likely the center panel is thin MDF. These small differences are not worth the $10,000 price difference, especially considering that the material and construction is essentially the same.

Is it hard to install cabinets?

Installing cabinets is difficult work, which is why it is the majority of cost when considering new cabinets. Do not be fooled by the seemingly good price on a major retailer’s site. Those veneer cabinet boxes are just the material cost and do not advertise the installation price until the contract is finalized. Resurrect Wood Refinishing has mastered not only refinishing any type of wood, but provides a Re-Door option to convert to real wood doors. This option will save homeowners thousands of dollars by preserving the existing cabinetry while delivering a fresh new look. There is no reason to install new cabinets unless the boxes are falling apart from the wall, and even that may be able to be repaired with the right carpenter.

Why are cabinets so expensive?

Cabinets are expensive because they are one of the few items that cannot be mass produced at a high quality. Big Box Home Improvement Stores have figured out a way to replicate the look of quality cabinets without the actual integrity. There have been multiple instances where a customer has been frustrated because their new cabinets built in 2019 are worse than the oak cabinets they had in their old home from 2005. Quality cabinets require genuine craftsmanship. If there is a decrease in the available labor, it will affect the current market. 

Is it better to Refinish than Replace?

The best value for refinishing cabinets is that it is consistently ⅓  the cost of replacing cabinets. The best incentive for refinishing is that if the existing cabinets are of great quality our price is going to remain the same. Where retailers will upcharge $10,000 from cheap MDF to less cheap plywood, our refinishing quote will stay true to the essential charges of quality product and labor. The small investment in refinishing can majorly impact the total value of a home as we can make cabinets look brand new again.

How to find a kitchen cabinet painter?

Finding a cabinet painter or refinisher can be difficult. Even in this technological age, good craftsmen are hard to find. It requires personal experience in the field of home renovation to recognize who stands by their word and who is a scam. Many customers have difficulty with hiring painters, when there is little way to vette professionals. It can be hard to tell by an online presence if they are an established company or not. We have come behind cheaper bids to fix their work more times than we can count. If you are looking for a contractor and one bid is 10-20% less than all the other bids. Beware. This is a good indication that there is a reason they are so much less. The work will reflect it. 

On the other hand if a bid is 10-20% higher than the rest, it is okay to ask why. There is always a reason for why your bid is where it is. I have found people generally don’t mind paying for higher quality. Ask about the process, the staff, the experience, the warranty, license and insurance. Most companies have set their margins to reflect their costs. Higher quality products and knowledgeable staffing requires higher costs. In my opinion it’s worth it to make it last. 

Do painted cabinets look cheap?

There is nothing more heartbreaking than to arrive on a jobsite and see that a customer has attempted to paint their own cabinets. Paint is uneven, and is fragile to chipping and peeling, especially in a high traffic environment like a kitchen. Painting does not adhere to the original finish like a finishing product does. It looks caked on and does not look original to the cabinetry. Painting cabinets is a very outdated service with today’s revolutionary refinishing methods. The big risk with painting cabinets is that the homeowner needs to change the color after painting.  For instance in the event of needing to sell the home, they would either have to spend unnecessary money on new cabinets or, sand off the paint and start from scratch. This sanding process is a waste of  time and money, and does not guarantee good results because it is based on the level of practice of the hired worker. 

Refinishing is not just a great investment because it looks stylish and sleek, it’s a fantastic service because it offers the flexibility for the homeowner to change their color in the future, all the while continuing to preserve their excellent cabinetry. 

What happens if you don’t sand before painting?

If you don’t sand before painting you will be sure to find chipping and peeling after the job is done. Preparation of the surface is critical for a smooth operation, which is why we at Resurrect Wood Refinishing dedicate the entire first day of the project to masking and preparing. In the past, painters sanded cabinets because their paint did not adhere to the original finish on the cabinets. They needed to give the original finish a “tooth” or grit to it for proper adhesion. Our product bonds chemically, so no sanding is required. Instead, we focus on cleaning the surface of grease, oil, and other impurities. This saves you time and money and a big mess, for an unnecessary extra step.

Is it Hard to Paint Cabinets?

Resurrect Wood Refinishing is a cabinet renovation business dedicated to rejuvenating cabinets with the most up to date process called “Refinishing.” Painting of any kind for your cabinets is not recommended, as anything bought from a store is not designed for a factory finished look. That being said, the process and application of painting is similar to refinishing, which is why we feel confident to answer the following common questions from customers.

Painting cabinets is a very tedious and detail orientated job. We have personally met professional painters who have referred us to customers simply because the job is too daunting for their own crew. So if you are someone who has seen a DIY YouTube video and think you’re up to the task, beware. Painting cabinets by yourself may seem approachable on paper, but one misstep can  ruin your expensive cabinets. There are some key things to educate yourself in, if you’ve decided to try it yourself.

Know what kind of wood/surface you are working with. Not all wood is alike. They all have some quirks unique to the breed. Research on how to properly clean and prep the surface. Not all cleaning products that are designed for wood have the correct ph levels or are complementary to oil enamels or water based paints. Many use wax or acidic oils that need to be neutralized before prepping in your primer coats. Remove hardware and know the measurement of overlay of the hinges in the case of broken or worn out hinges. Have a temperature, humidity controlled area to work in. Remember to include all paper, tape, applicators, gloves, and other tools into your budget. If applying by hand, even following all the guidance you can find on the internet, it will still look hand applied. Consider renting a spraying rig, and remember to purchase all protection and filters for dust in your house. You will likely spend between $1000- $2500 doing the job yourself, and it will likely take you 7 days to 3 weeks to complete properly.

Is painting kitchen cabinets a good idea?

Painting kitchen cabinets in general is not a good idea. We excel in a process called “Refinishing,” which is a more innovative approach to updating existing cabinetry. The key difference is the product we use. Our proprietary blend of polyurethane acrylic adheres to the existing finish on cabinets. It is thin, durable, and odorless, leaving a factory finish that looks as if the cabinets always were that way. It is also water soluble and environmentally friendly. We are able to tint it to any stain or solid color upon request. In our experience we are hired often to fix DIY work. There are some things in life worth hiring out. We think our level of expertise can make all the difference. 

What is the average cost to paint kitchen cabinets?

The average cost to hire a painter for your kitchen cabinets is usually about $100-$120 per surface area. Refinishing is only a little more expensive than that since the equipment and product we use is much more valuable. It’s always discouraging to see customer’s take a bid from a general painter when the price difference is only a couple hundred bucks compared to the scope of the project. It may seem like a good deal, however in the long run the product isn’t as durable and won’t have the longevity a higher quality refinish would.  Many general painters do not focus exclusively on repainting cabinets. Resurrect Wood Refinishing is dedicated only to refinishing woodwork, which is why we are so confident and proud of our quality service.

Is it hard to paint your own kitchen cabinets?

Painting or refinishing cabinets can be an overwhelming endeavor if not managed by practiced hands. That is one of the main reasons we have managed to dedicate a business to just that service. There are a lot of factors to consider when painting or refinishing cabinets. Surrounding areas need to be masked, the surface has to be properly prepared, and air quality must be regulated, and the list goes on..

Mistakes can happen. It is crucial to make sure the right product is being used for the right circumstances. This is why we hope you will trust our knowledge in the field. 

Is it expensive to refinish my cabinets?

Before refinishing, homeowners really only had two options for cabinet renovations: re-painting or remodeling. Painting was a cheap bandage and remodeling burned wallets.

Refinishing was revolutionary, because it sits perfectly in the middle between the two options. The goal of refinishing is to help rejuvenate and restore without leaving any drips, brush strokes, odors, or any other side effects that painting causes. Refinishing provides as close to a factory finish as is humanly possible. It creates a stellar impression, making the new color selection look original to the home. That is why it’s only a little more expensive than “Joe’s Paint shop,” and significantly cheaper than a complete cabinet demolition. Our business model is consistent in pricing at  ⅓ the cost of purchasing and installing new cabinets. It’s the perfect investment for your flip or your forever home.

How much does it cost to have kitchen cabinets refinished?

An average kitchen, with 10×10 layout and 32” tall cabinets is generally quoted at about $2,500-$4,500 for refinishing. That estimate is for the front and back of the cabinet doors, the face frame of the cabinet boxes, side panels, and anything else that is in the original finish. Refinishing is designed to fit perfectly at the ⅓ cost price range from a complete cabinet renovation. It preserves the existing wood and layout while updating the design, tone, color and atmosphere of a kitchen, which is what most customers typically desire when considering an update.

Is it cheaper to refinish or replace cabinets?

It is significantly cheaper to refinish cabinets than it is to replace them. Wood cabinets rarely need to be replaced. Real wood cabinets are getting so rare. Our society is moving more and more to disposable furnishing. They simply aren’t making solid wood cabinets affordable anymore. Solid wood cabinets are the highest durability surface in a kitchen you can have. PLEASE DON’T THROW THEM IN A LANDFILL! It’s valuable and can last decades, which is why many builders are pushing for cheaper alternatives. If you have wood cabinets and just dislike the style or color, refinishing is definitely the way to go. With today’s lumber prices going up, it’s going to be best to hold on to what you’ve already got. There are exceptions in the case of deteriorating surfaces due to moisture that may cause swelling or damage. 

How much does it cost to sand and repaint kitchen cabinets?

Sanding and repainting cabinets are typically the same price as refinishing. Generally painting companies just paint. Many won’t do necessary sanding because of extra labor and material costs.  If your cabinets need to be sanded but you’ve received a quote to only paint them, be careful. The final result may look rough, uneven, or caked on the surfaces of your cabinets. If you are bid for sanding, you may want to consider our Re-Door service. Re-Dooring is the process of buying new cabinet doors. If you’re already going to invest so much into an in-between service, it may be worth it to invest the extra money for new doors and provide an opportunity for a whole new design. You can take a Standard Oak kitchen, re-door with full overlay Shaker in maple and the cabinets look completely new. New raw doors are guaranteed to look flawless. Add some of our tinted finish to it and it will appear as if your cabinets were brand new. 

What is Cabinet Glazing?

Cabinet glazing refers to the technique of applying a color accent onto a base color. It is typically applied by a hand, making it custom and unique in every project. Glazing is generally added to the millwork of cabinet doors, panels, crown molding–anything and everything with grooves, bevels, and intentional indentation. Glazing is a great way to personalize your cabinets and can accommodate many designs.

Resurrect Wood Refinishing offers a custom glazing service that can be tweaked and adjusted to each client’s desired aesthetic. The three main styles we have been able to categorize are called Neat Glazing, Full Body Glazing, and Farmhouse Faux Grain Glazing. Neat Glazing or “Pin glaze / PinStripe Glaze” as some call it, is a technique where a technician uses a thin paint brush to add crisp, straight lines. It serves as a great way to accentuate shadows and profiles.

pinstripe kitchen cabinets

Full Body Glazing is a wipe-on-wipe-off technique. Glaze is liberally applied across the millwork, into all the corners and crevices,  and then wiped off and cleaned up. The base and accent colors are blended better together since the lines are not as precise and even. This creates a rustic and antique appearance. This technique can be as subtle or dramatic as the client likes. Offering a softness and warmth to millwork, or really getting the drama out of the profiles in greater contrast approaches.

pinstripe kitchen cabinets
pinstripe kitchen cabinets

Farm Faux Grain Glazing is our newest technique. As the name suggests, the goal of this style is to mimic modern wood veneer patterns. (think variable gray woodgrain) The technician wipes glaze across the center panel, stiles, and rails in consistent vertical and horizontal lines in multiple shades. Then a final coat of blending and sealing makes for a beautiful final product.

pinstripe kitchen cabinets

Should I Glaze my Cabinets?

Glazing is a great way to personalize your cabinets and tie together countertops, floors, backsplashes, and even adjacent rooms. It does not suit every design vision, but really adds a custom “Wow” factor. Increasing the “factory finish” look, with this technique, no one would ever guess it was a refinish.  Resurrect Wood Refinishing offers Interior Design Services, so feel free to inquire for additional assistance with whether or not glazing is the right fit for your cabinetry. 

How do you apply glaze to cabinets?

Glazing is applied on top of the base color before the final clear coat is added. It is a water-based pigment that can be easily applied and removed. It is a very viscous product, so the steadiest of hands is required to achieve uniformity in the final result. That is why nearly all  (PinStripe Cabinets) (Pin Glaze) glazed cabinets sold in retail kitchen remodeling stores are done by factory application. Resurrect Wood Refinishing is proud to not only have mastered the technique in so many forms but is able to accommodate any vision and style. Our Artist personally glazes every project. With a background and degree in Fine Arts and 30 years experience in painting and color, together with you, she will accomplish your vision. 

Are glazed cabinets out of style 2021?

Glazed cabinets are more fashionable than ever before, with our newest Farm Faux Grain Glazing being inspired from last year’s trend. We are seeing less of the bolder contrast glazes, but the low contrast approaches are really gaining steam. Right now there is a great focus on warmth, rustic, and multi color accents in the kitchen. That being said, all it takes is a different color combination of cooler tones to transform glazing from French Country to New York sleek. We are seeing some traditional designers using glazing to create applique designs or patterns. (we can do that too!) This is not for every project but can be great for hiding damage, or adding some texture to the back wall of a glass door cabinet.

PinStripe Cabinets
PinStripe Cabinets
PinStripe Cabinets

How much does it cost to paint cabinets?

Resurrect Wood Refinishing is a wood refinishing company, not a painting company. Our technique is much more thorough than painting, our product is durable, odorless, and as close to a factory finished look as possible. We use a proprietary blend based on a polyurethane acrylic that is selected from choice vendors. Think water based lacquer finish. That all being said, we understand the confusion with painting versus refinishing and hope that this blog post will clarify the common questions we receive.

With labor and product, the average cost to paint cabinets in the Orlando market is about $110-$120 per surface area. Painting may seem like the more affordable choice at first, professional painters charge a bit less than refinishing. However, with such a large difference in quality between refinishing and painting, we don’t think the small gap in price justifies the purchase. Most professional painters do not focus exclusively on cabinets. They apply the same techniques for walls, baseboards, and ceilings to wooden cabinets. Thus producing a quality that is less than desirable due to unconsidered factors like, type of wood, grain direction, and depp grease/oil stains.

Can you just paint over cabinets?

It is impossible to paint over cabinets if the expectation is anything but to look like painted-over-cabinets. Even with spraying techniques, the paint products are designed to be applied by hand, and in order to spray they have to thin the product, thus compromising the durability. If hand applied, latex and enamel paints clog up corners, leave thick brush strokes, and do not adhere to wood as well as our refinishing products do. Painters typically skip the important steps we use to prepare the wood surface. This neglect can risk what is called a “color bleed-through,” where the old color and stain appear through the new coat of paint. In most situations, professional painters who do not specialize in cabinet refinishing will just keep applying paint as a solution to bleed-throughs, creating thicker coats. The result in the end product looks less like a factory finish and more like painted cabinets.

Many professional painters will apply generous amounts of gloss finish, at the end of their cabinet service, suggesting this as an alternative for refinishing. We applaud the effort but the poly coats are generally too thick, and leave bubbles and a rough feel.

Is it better to spray paint or brush cabinets?

We prefer spraying over brushing. Spraying our refinishing product helps maintain even coats without any risk of brush strokes. It allows our technicians to evaluate every situation on an as-needed basis, as different types of wood require different amounts of coatings. This attention minimizes unnecessary labor time and cost to the customer. 

How long do professionally painted cabinets last?

In addition to looking less than desirable, professionally painted cabinets only last about 2-5 years before requiring another coat of paint. They are subject to chipping and peeling and most painting companies do not offer a touch up service. 

Depending on the homeowner, refinished cabinets can last the life of the cabinets themselves. Keeping up with cleaning and after care helps ensure our product to last for years without needing any additional work. Our product is water-based, meaning mild dish soap and water can be used for all clean ups. 

Is it cheaper to refinish/”paint” or replace kitchen cabinets?

The goal of refinishing is to save customer’s a third of the cost of replacing their cabinets completely. Resurrect Wood Refinishing aims to preserve the existing cabinetry by applying a new coat of finish and also changing the color if desired. Many times customers are perfectly fine with the layout of their cabinets. Their cabinet boxes are in great shape and they do not mind the style of their cabinet doors. If this sounds like you then we encourage you to contact us for an in-person estimate. It’s getting harder and harder to buy wood cabinets without the hefty price tag, so why not just update what you already have?

Can You Repair Peeling Thermofoil Cabinets?

You may be able to reglue one or two sections, but once the laminate layer has pulled off from the MDF, the thermofoil cabinet is exposed to humidity and the swelling breakdown of the structure begins.

Thermofoil cabinets are designed as a laminate that has been heated to shrink-wrap over an MDF core panel. This pressured bonding is fantastic and serves well for the limited years. Yet thermofoil cabinets are designed to be disposable. They make a great selling point for a quick and affordable modern appearance, but they do not last, especially in the Florida humidity. 

In most scenarios, thermofoil doors peel much more quickly than cabinet boxes. If the boxes are in good condition, then we recommend replacing the thermofoil doors with wooden doors. We recommend wooden doors because wooden doors will never have to be replaced if cared for under normal use. Resurrect Wood Refinishing offers a door replacement service that still preserves the existing cabinetry. Our refinishing product adheres to laminate, so we have the ability to replace the doors, color them, and match your current cabinet boxes. In basic terms, the answer is no, you cannot repair peeling thermofoil cabinets.

Can Thermofoil cabinets be refaced?

Absolutely. While it may be unfortunate that your thermofoil cabinet doors are peeling, in most scenarios the cabinet boxes are untouched and last much longer. Our kitchen cabinet re-door service provides customers the opportunity to replace their thermofoil cabinet doors with wood doors. We recommend wooden doors to prevent future replacement. We can choose from any design, as all of our doors are produced from a custom carpenter. Once the color and door are selected, we can preserve the existing cabinet box to match the new design. 

Why are my bathroom and kitchen thermofoil cabinets peeling?

Your bathroom and kitchen cabinets are most likely peeling due to humidity. Coffee makers, dishwashers, shower heads, and anything else that produces high steam in a close range to your cabinet, can cause slight lifting to the glue on the edges of the thermofoil layer. This trapped water lifts the bonding between the laminate layer and the MDF core which begins the dreaded “peeling,” process. Additionally, if your cabinets do not have any handles, high-traffic use of opening and closing your cabinet doors on the corners can also increase the risk for damage in those sections.

How long do Thermofoil cabinets last?

Most vendors only guarantee their thermofoil cabinets for a year. Anything beyond a year is subjected to “manufacturer fault,” which does not cover peeling or damage due to elements like humidity or normal use. 

Outside of warranty, thermofoil cabinets are expected to last up to five to ten years when cared for properly. That isn’t to say that small sections may start to peel or chip sooner. It must be advised that while thermofoil cabinets may be a solution for a budget-conscious decision, the investment is temporary and will need to be redone down the road.

Are Thermofoil cabinets cheaper than wood?
The raw price of thermofoil cabinets is more expensive than wood. Builders are able to sell them at a cheaper price because the laminate is already finished. The only reason wooden cabinets seem more expensive is because they have to be finished with a stain or solid color, which is an added service. This can deter customers because when compared by prices, thermofoil cabinets definitely seem more appealing. The problem is that thermofoil cabinets will always, at some point, need to be replaced. Wooden cabinets will never have to be replaced if taken care of. Consider replacing–not “repairing.”

What’s the difference between refinishing and refacing cabinets?

The difference between refinishing and refacing is quite drastic, that we are always surprised that the terminology is still mixed up. Refinishing is taking the existing cabinetry and applying a new finish to the old finish. We offer three types of Refinishing/ Traditional, Solid Color, and Stain. Our Traditional Refinish is re-applying a new, clear coat, and correcting any color loss or fading  to refresh and reinvigorate the old stain. Our Solid Color and Stain services allow us to tint that new coat into any color the client selects. Please look through our services page for more details and pictures.

Refacing on the other hand involves re-applying new skins of laminate onto the existing cabinets. It’s a much more cost-intensive project and could be totally unnecessary if your cabinets qualify for Refinishing. Sometimes Refacing can be redefined as “Re-Dooring” which is buying new doors to put over your existing cabinet boxes. That is a service we offer if that is the end goal of the project.

Is it cheaper to refinish or reface kitchen cabinets?

It is much cheaper to refinish than to reface your kitchen cabinets. Whether you select new doors or new laminate, you are looking at about half the cost it would be to just buy new cabinets. Resurrect Wood Refinishing offers a first class service that aims to be ⅓ the cost it would be to purchase and install new cabinetry.  We do offer our Re-Door service, in which we order new doors in any material or style many times obtaining a drastic new look. While much more of an investment than a standard Refinishing service, it significantly increases the value of your home and kitchen. It is a service best recommended to the customer hoping to achieve a dream kitchen or trying to assist with selling their home. 

Is it better to reface or paint cabinets?

As discussed, there is a slight difference in terminology in the word “Refacing.” The professional verbiage for Refacing is applying a new skin of laminate over your existing cabinets. This is an incredibly expensive procedure and is something we do not recommend since there is no guarantee in the durability. Think sheets of plastic being glued over wood. It will eventually peel off and is not worth the cost in our opinion.

Painting is another service we do not recommend. While it may be cheaper than Refinishing, it is a service that ultimately does not look good on kitchen cabinets. Many painted cabinets have brush strokes or thick gloss. There are cracks and corners that build and bubble up, and you are certain to expect peeling, chipping, and cracking in only a couple years. Refinishing is designed to adhere to the existing finish, which creates an end product as close to a factory finish as humanly possible. It’s sleek, clean, and durable. Give us a call or check out our website for the differences between Refinishing and Painting.

Is it worth it to reface kitchen cabinets?

The only time it is worth Refacing your kitchen cabinets is if the term is being used to describe acquiring new doors, and if that’s the case, we call it “Re-Dooring.” The cost of the project is a little more expensive than a standard Refinish, but it significantly adds value to the project and provides a completely new look to your kitchen. If you are happy with the layout of your kitchen but want a new style, Re-Dooring may be what you are looking for.

Is it better to spray or roll kitchen cabinets?

Rolled cabinets will always look rolled. Rolling is time-intensive treatment and can leave brush strokes even when applied correctly. While there is leftover dust from spraying, the product we use at Resurrect Wood Refinishing is water-based and non-odorous. There is no overspray from the dust and our masking procedure protects everything inside the work zone. If dust is the only concern in moving forward with our Refinishing services, you may want to consider renting out one of our Air Scrubbers. We offer a three-fold HEPA filter Air Scrubber at a much lower cost than our competitors and it guarantees over 3/4 less dust at the end of the project than without. Ask one of our sales associates for details.

Is It Dangerous to Refinish Cabinets?

Depending on how you approach your cabinet refinishing project, most professionals offer a completely safe, dependable, and affordable process when refinishing your cabinets. Refinishing helps rejuvenate your wooden cabinets and preserves them for the years to come. When using the appropriate product, there are no dangerous risks to the quality of your cabinets, nor harmful exposures to you and your family if using the Resurrect product line. 

At Resurrect Wood Refinishing, we have triple checked our products and procedures to ensure that our process is not only safe, but preventative of any risks to you as the client. Our product is an eco-friendly, water based solution that’s easy to clean. There are no harsh fumes that linger for weeks nor heavy dust. The chemicals are designed to adhere to your existing finish, without needing to strip or sand. We plastic everything off and keep all of the work within the parameters, creating a safe environment for you to continue working in the next room if need be. And, most importantly, we are a small family business which does not hire any outside contractors to do the work. Our respect and consideration for your home is our top priority. Plus, we clean up after ourselves, so rest assured you won’t see any crushed soda cans anywhere.

Is it difficult to refinish cabinets?

The process to refinish cabinets definitely takes more skill, research, and experience to replicate the desired factory finished look our company accomplishes. The training alone takes almost six months for any one of our new recruits to fully understand the entire process. Every step requires attention, from cutting the perfect corner piece of masking tape to applying several even coats of product without the dreaded “Orange Peel” look. What we do within 4-5 business days could take many weeks for someone who is inexperienced.

Refinishing cabinets is our specific focus. We have many horror stories of painters who insist they can take the project on, only to hire us later to fix their mistakes. There are so many variables to consider when refinishing cabinets. That is why we at Resurrect Wood Refinishing have been able to make it our primary service. We have many years experience in trial and error, learning from every type of scenario imaginable. Our quick turnaround service is a credit to our knowledge gained over the years. 

Is it better to strip or sand kitchen cabinets?

We never recommend you sand or strip your cabinets. The only scenario we’ve experienced where this would be applicable would be trying to get rid of unfinished paint, and even then, we sand only as needed. Stripping is working with harsh chemicals that are not only dangerous to handle, but could ruin your wood if not applied correctly. It is an old method that is no longer required since there are now revolutionary techniques like those that our company utilizes. 

Sanding is only to be done if there is paint that is chipping or peeling, such as latex paint or an enamel paint. If the entire project needs to be sanded, then we would recommend considering new raw wood doors in place of the sanding cost, we offer a “Re-dooring” service. This would not only make up for the service charge, but increase the value of the kitchen. Consider researching Resurrect Wood Refinishing’s “Re-Door” service on the homepage for more information. A true transformation.

Why shouldn’t you paint your cabinets?

The reason you shouldn’t paint your cabinets is because painted cabinets look painted. It’s as simple as that. Painted cabinets look uneven, unpolished, and unnatural. They can be rough in texture if not sanded correctly and will always chip or peel within a couple years. The only way to correct chipped paint is to go over with another coat of paint or sand the entire kitchen and start from a raw surface.  Continuing to paint cabinets over the years begins to make your cabinets look “caked” in paint, further enforcing that unnatural and cheap appearance. 

Refinishing cabinets is the better alternative to painting because not only is it much more durable than paint, but it has the flexibility to be re-colored in the future without risking that factory finished look. While paint continues to thicken, our product easily adheres to new, tinted finish should your tastes in colors change in a couple years. 

Do painted cabinets look cheap?

Yes, yes, and yes. Many times painted cabinets are applied by the same methods that painters use on walls or other flat surfaces: a brush or roller, and a gallon of latex paint. While walls or ceilings may look beautiful in the right hands, brushed cabinets can leave thick lines and look terribly uneven. Even if the painter reassures he will only spray your cabinet, paint has the terrible habit of dripping and bubbling in small corners and cracks. Not to mention that latex paint is a rubberized compound. While it’s organic and non-odorous nature may seem appealing, it is very fragile to the slightest bump or bruise. Imagine if such coating was applied on kitchen cabinet surfaces that must endure high traffic and hot temperatures and lots of fingernails, it never makes for a good outcome, and it is why we are always called to remedy the situation a couple years later.

How long does it take to redo my cabinets?

Here at Resurrect we aim to resurrect them in three days (wink), but in most cases from start to finish is about 4-5 business days, while it could take up to two months to purchase and install new cabinets. We think refinishing is the best option when you want to “Redo” your cabinets. Installing new cabinets requires demolition, measurement, and installation, and lack of access to the premises for sometimes months. Refinishing, on the other hand, is not only cost effective, but can be a very quick and smooth process.

Refinishing your kitchen project can be summarized into three steps.

Step One is the masking stage. Our small, professional, cleancut and background checked crew will arrive onsite for the very first day of the project. The crew will mask off everything from your cabinet boxes to the countertops to the floors and walls. They will take down your cabinet doors and mask off the interior of the box. This will protect your space from overspray and will also allow you to keep most of your items inside the cabinet boxes.

Step Two will be to refinish (paint) the boxes. This is day two of the work week. A lead technician will arrive at your house, run a plastic curtain around the entire room and begin the process of refinishing. While this is happening, your doors and drawer fronts will also be worked on back at our facility, with the same refinishing that is happening with your boxes in your home.

Step Three in the final step a crew will return to your home for installation day. Every door and drawer front will be installed back in its original location. Every hinge, knob and handle will also be put back exactly where it was taken from. After which the crew will take down all masking, clean up any dust from painting and do a final check for touch up spots.

Why do kitchen renovations take so long?

A full kitchen renovation can take anywhere from 6 to 8 weeks. It’s a long process because measurements must be made, approved, and double checked. The contractor then submits the blueprints to construction, and depending on their timeline will also affect your project’s. Then there will need to be a window for demolition, receiving the new cabinets, hanging them up, installing, and final adjustments. There are several vendors and teams involved with the process which not only affects the length of the process, but the budget. That is why we recommend refinishing.

Refinishing is a process of taking your existing cabinets and cleaning and prepping them to put a brand new finish, and even color on them, making them look brand new. This process takes much less time and is far less expensive than a full rebuild. The main reason people want to “change their cabinets” is usually because they don’t like the color. We have found that changing the tone can affect the entire space, which is why refinishing is a much more effective way of reaching the same end goal. The process is generally done in as little as three to five business days depending on the size. We guarantee a small, respectful, family-orientated work team.

How much does it cost to refinish cabinets?

To refinish your exciting cabinets will be around one third the cost of a complete remodel and build out of new cabinets. It will depend on the size of your kitchen or bathroom and how many doors and drawers you have. It could average anywhere from a couple of thousand dollars for smaller spaces, to upwards towards $10,000 or more for a larger kitchen. Remember, these numbers are reflective of the third of the value for your project. While a quote may be in the thousands, your existing cabinetry will most certainly be triple that cost and time to complete the work.

Resurrect Wood Refinishing offers free estimates and calculations to help plan your budget. Please keep in mind that while our prices are a little more expensive to a general painter’s quote, the end result is getting as close to a factory finish as possible, with the same durability and sleekness you would expect from buying new cabinets.

Refinishing is a great alternative to new cabinets because it tends to have the same effect as brand new cabinets, simply because our refinishing process changes the color but also looks like a factory finish no one would ever guess it was a refinish. Brand new look, for a third of the cost.
Is it better to refinish or replace kitchen cabinets?

The question of whether to refinish your cabinets or replace them is a pretty common one. Most people think that replacing their cabinets with brand new cabinets is the only way to achieve the fresh, new and professionally looking renovation for their kitchen. And with that mindset some people often spend much more money than they need to.

Having a professional and experienced company refinish your existing cabinets can be far less expensive, take much less time and still give you that brand new look you are hoping for. You could have your cabinets refinished with a new coat similar to what you are used to or change your colors altogether. It’s really entirely up to you.

If you are looking to redesign your space completely then it may be necessary to replace your cabinets and have new ones built. However if your existing cabinets are in good shape but you would like a new look for your kitchen, you could save time and money with refinishing.

Is it cheaper to refinish or replace kitchen cabinets?

It will be much cheaper to refinish your kitchen cabinets rather than replace them. To refinish your existing kitchen cabinets will be around one third the cost of a complete remodel and build out of new cabinets. The process of replacing will also take much more time than refinishing.

Refinishing or refacing your existing cabinets can be done in as little as a couple of days and in some cases you may not even have to clear your cabinets out for the work to be done. It is a much less invasive process and will have your kitchen looking brand new in a shorter time for much less money.

What are Thermofoil Cabinets?

Thermofoil cabinets have become increasingly popular as homeowners seek a stylish yet affordable way to update their kitchen or bathroom. Thermofoil cabinets offer exceptional durability in various colors, styles, and finishes that complement any home décor. But what exactly are thermofoil cabinets? In this article, we’ll explain what thermofoil cabinets are, their benefits, and how to select the right ones for your home. So keep reading to learn more about thermofoil cabinets!

Definition of Thermofoil Cabinets

Defination of thermofoil cabinets

Thermofoil cabinets, contrary to what the name might imply, are not made of thermal foil but rather a vinyl coating. This coating is applied to medium-density fiberboard (MDF) using heat and pressure, hence the ‘thermo’ prefix. Think of cabinet doors as the ultimate chameleons of the cabinetry world.

They can mimic the appearance of painted wood, natural wood grain, and even high-gloss finishes, allowing you to achieve your desired aesthetic without breaking the bank. For instance, if you’re after a classic, crisp white kitchen, thermofoil cabinets can deliver that fresh, clean look. Or would you prefer a rustic, farmhouse style? No problem! Thermofoil cabinets can emulate the warm, natural grain of oak or pine. They’re like the talented actors of interior design able to take on any role you need them to play!

Benefits of Thermofoil Cabinets

Benefits of thermofoil cabinets

Upgrading to thermofoil cabinets can provide numerous benefits for your home. Here are the key advantages that Thermofoil cabinets can offer:


Thermofoil cabinets are akin to the superheroes of cabinetry, with durability being their chief superpower. They’re engineered to withstand the rigors of daily kitchen activities, from coping with hot steam from your hearty soups or pasta sauce splatters to dealing with accidental bumps and bangs. They are the silent, resistant warriors in your kitchen, unfazed by the accidental spills and splashes that would make a regular wooden cabinet shudder.

Think about the last time you spilled hot coffee or dropped a hot sauce bottle on your kitchen and bathroom cabinets. Did the finish bubble or peel? With thermofoil cabinets, such incidents won’t be part of your worries anymore. Their impressive resistance to heat and moisture ensures they remain as dazzling as the day you first installed them.

Imagine the relief of knowing that your cabinets will still look fabulous even after your culinary experiments have gone wrong or your kids’ creative attempts at making breakfast. This high level of durability makes thermofoil cabinets an appealing option for homeowners who value both form and function.

Maintenance Ease

Besides being durable, thermofoil cabinets are straightforward to maintain. Unlike hardwood cabinets that require regular dusting and waxing to keep them looking their best, Thermofoil cabinets can be easily wiped down with a damp cloth and mild detergent solution. This makes upkeep an incredibly swift process without special cleaning products or tools.

And for those accident-prone homeowners, thermofoil cabinets provide the perfect solution to keeping your cabinets looking showroom quality all year round. Just a simple wipe-down is all it takes to restore their original shine and luster without the fear of causing permanent damage.

Cost-Effective Solution

Thermofoil cabinets are surprisingly affordable, making them ideal for homeowners who want to upgrade their kitchen without breaking the bank. This cost-effectiveness is due to the materials used to construct thermofoil cabinetry being more budget-friendly than those used in traditional wood cabinets.

More importantly, however, thermofoil cabinets can help you save money in the long run. Since they are so easy to clean and maintain, there’s no need for costly repairs or replacements due to wear and tear.


Thermofoil cabinets are both a budget-friendly and low-maintenance choice and an eco-friendly option for the environmentally-conscious homeowner. Crafted from a Medium-Density Fiberboard (MDF) enveloped in a layer of vinyl, thermofoil cabinets utilize significantly less wood in their construction than traditional wooden cabinets. This reduces deforestation, helping preserve our planet’s precious woodland ecosystems.

The manufacturing process of thermofoil cabinets involves minimal waste, as any MDF offcuts can be recycled into other products, embodying the principle of ‘waste not, want not’. So, by opting for thermofoil cabinets, you’re not just investing in a stylish, durable solution for your home but also positively impacting the environment.

A Timeless Appeal

Thermofoil cabinets are in various colors, styles, and textures, making them the perfect addition to any kitchen or bathroom space. Whether you prefer a modern look with sleek lines and bright colors or a more traditional style with neutral tones and intricate detailing, you will surely find thermofoil cabinets that fit your taste.

What’s more, thermofoil cabinets never seem to go out of style – their look and feel remain remarkably timeless no matter how the trends change. So if you’re looking for a long-lasting cabinetry choice that will stand the test of time, consider installing thermofoil cabinets in your home.


Thermofoil cabinets can be shaped and formed into almost any design, allowing maximum versatility for cabinetry needs. From doors with intricate detailing to edges that mimic the look of natural wood grain, you have complete control over the finished product when you opt for thermofoil construction.

Whether you’re looking for a classic kitchen makeover or a custom one-of-a-kind project, thermofoil cabinets will give you the flexibility to bring your vision to life. Plus, with various finishes and colors, you won’t need to worry about finding the perfect shade.


Another great thing about thermofoil cabinets is that they can easily be customized to fit your needs. If you’re looking for a storage solution tailored to your space’s dimensions, thermofoil cabinets are an excellent choice. They can also serve as the perfect base for any additional features or accents you may want to add.

Thermofoil cabinets are also a great option for those who want to make their cabinetry an extension of their lifestyle. With the ability to choose from various shapes, sizes, and styles, you can easily create a look that’s all your own.

Challenges of Thermofoil Cabinets

Challenges of thermofoil cabinets

Despite the many benefits of thermofoil cabinets, they also have a few drawbacks. These include:

Difficulty Painting Over

While thermofoil cabinets are lauded for their durability, versatility, and customization potential, they are not without their hiccups. One common obstacle faced by homeowners is the challenge of repainting the surface. The plastic-like finish of the thermofoil makes it difficult for the paint to adhere effectively.

A successful painting requires meticulous surface preparation, typically involving a thorough cleaning, sanding, and priming routine. Even with this preparation, the paint’s longevity could be compromised due to the non-porous nature of the thermofoil surface. So, if you’re the type who likes to switch up your color palette frequently, thermofoil might not be your first choice. However, given the broad spectrum of colors and finishes in thermofoil cabinets, you might find your preferred hue without needing a paintbrush.

Limited Print Variety

Another drawback of thermofoil cabinets is that the prints and patterns tend to be limited to a tight selection. As such, if you’re hoping for a unique or personalized look, thermofoil may not be your best option. However, as mentioned above, there are still plenty of colors and finishes from which to choose.

Susceptibility to Heat Damage

Another potential downside of thermofoil cabinets is their susceptibility to heat damage. Excessive exposure to direct sunlight, high humidity, steam, or even a humidifier can cause the coating to separate from the cabinet frame. Once this separation occurs, it’s difficult (if not impossible) to repair without replacing the affected areas.

So, if your thermofoil kitchen cabinets often experience high temperatures or moisture levels, it’s important to take precautions to protect them from damage. Consider moving any heat sources farther away from the thermofoil surfaces and drying off water droplets that might accumulate during cooking or washing dishes.

How to Select the Right Thermofoil Cabinets for Your Home

How to select the right thermofoil cabinet for your home

When looking for thermofoil cabinets, there are a few important factors to consider. These include the following:

Design Aesthetics

The visual appeal of your thermofoil cabinets is an essential factor to consider. The design aesthetics should align with your existing decor and personal style preferences. Whether you have an affinity for modern minimalism, rustically charming, or traditionally elegant interiors, thermofoil cabinets come in a wide array of designs to meet your taste.

For instance, if you’re a fan of sleek style, a high gloss white thermofoil finish will ooze contemporary sophistication. Alternatively, for those with a penchant for the rustic charm of countryside kitchens, a wood grain thermofoil cabinet will emulate the warmth and homeliness of natural timber. Remember, it’s not just about functionality; it’s also about making your kitchen a place where you’re happy to spend time. So choose a design that makes your heart sing whenever you enter the room.

Cabinet Quality

When it comes to selecting thermofoil cabinets, quality is an important factor. Ensure you check the construction and materials used to ensure your cabinets are durable and long-lasting. High-quality thermofoil cabinets will save you money in the long run due to their increased strength and longevity.


When selecting them for your home, it’s important to consider how much you want to spend on your thermofoil cabinets. If you have a limited budget, plenty of fairly priced options still look great and provide high-quality materials and construction. Remember, it’s possible to find stylish and affordable cabinets.


The installation process is another important factor when selecting thermofoil cabinets for your home. Check if the company provides professional assembly services or has a list of recommended installers in your area. This will save you time and hassle during installation and ensure your cabinets are assembled properly.


Maintaining your thermofoil cabinets is the secret sauce to their longevity; luckily, it’s a breeze. Unlike solid wood cabinets that require special cleaning solutions and esoteric maintenance rituals, thermofoil cabinets are known to be low-maintenance champions. They are highly moisture resistant, meaning you won’t have to worry about warping or discoloration. Their smooth and non-porous surface makes them a cinch to clean.

A simple wipe with a damp cloth and mild detergent will remove most spills and stains, keeping your cabinets looking as good as new. Imagine the pleasure of cooking spaghetti bolognese without the anxiety of tomato sauce splashes ruining your cabinet finish! To add to their charm, thermofoil cabinets do not require repainting or refinishing, making them an ideal choice for those who prioritize simplicity and convenience in their kitchen maintenance. Remember, your kitchen should be a place of joy and creativity, not a source of constant upkeep worries. So, embrace the beauty and ease of thermofoil cabinets, and let your culinary adventures be the only thing on your mind when you enter your kitchen.

Maintenance and Care of Thermofoil Cabinets

Maintenance and care of thermofoil cabinents

Thermofoil cabinets are a great addition to any kitchen. They offer exceptional durability, easy maintenance, and an appealing aesthetic that will add value to your home. To ensure that your thermofoil cabinets stay pristine for years, you can take a few essential steps during regular cleaning and maintenance.

Avoid Excessive Heat and Direct Sunlight

While thermofoil cabinets are champions in the battle against moisture and stains, they’re not impervious to all foes. Excessive heat, for instance, can prove a formidable adversary. It’s important to keep these resplendent warriors away from high-temperature appliances like ovens and stovetops, as prolonged exposure to heat can cause warping and other damage. Direct sunlight should also be avoided, as it can fade the vibrant colors of your stock thermofoil cabinets over time.

Clean Regularly With Mild Detergents

No one wants to spend their Saturday night elbow-deep in soapy water, but regular cleaning is essential for keeping your thermofoil cabinets looking their best. The good news is that thermofoil is exceptionally easy to clean, so you won’t need to invest in many specialty detergents. Warm water and mild dish soap are often sufficient for most dirt and grime. Use an all-purpose cleaner such as vinegar or baking soda for tougher spots.

Don’t Forget the Inside

When cleaning your thermofoil cabinets, don’t forget about the inside surfaces. Regularly wiping down all sides with a damp cloth will help keep dirt and grime at bay and ensure that your cupboards are as clean on the inside as they are on the outside.

Seal the Edges

If your thermofoil cabinets have exposed edges or joints, it’s important to ensure they’re properly sealed. Use a quality sealant to protect the edges from moisture and wear, which is especially important in humid climates. Applying sealant to the edges of your cabinets will help keep them looking pristine for years to come.

Get Professional Assistance When Necessary

Getting professional assistance if you’re unsure about maintaining your melamine cabinets. A knowledgeable technician can provide tips and advice on the best cleaning solutions and identify any potential signs of damage or wear that require attention.

Invest in Quality Products

Quality is always worth the investment in your white thermofoil cabinets. Investing in high-grade materials and specialized cleaning products will ensure your cabinets look their best and last longer.

Things To Avoid When Cleaning Thermofoil Cabinets

Thermofoil cabinets are a great choice for your home but require special care. Here are a few things to avoid to keep your cabinets looking their best:

  1. Don’t use abrasive materials: When cleaning thermofoil cabinets, avoid abrasive materials like steel wool or scouring pads. These can cause scratches that will damage the surface of your cabinets and make them look dull over time.
  2. Avoid strong cleaning solutions: Strong and harsh chemical cleaners can damage the finish on your cabinets. Stick to mild soaps and warm water when possible.
  3. Don’t use too much moisture: Too much water or humidity can cause swelling or peeling of the thermofoil finish, leading to unsightly damage. When mopping floors or cleaning countertops, use a damp cloth and dry it immediately.
  4. Don’t skip regular maintenance: Regularly dusting your thermofoil cabinets and wiping them down with a damp cloth will help keep them looking their best over time.


The allure of thermofoil cabinets lies not only in their aesthetic appeal but also in their durability and ease of maintenance. These remarkable cabinets, however, do demand a degree of special care. Opt for gentle cleaning solutions instead of harsh chemicals, and avoid abrasive materials that might cause unwelcome scratches. Humidity and moisture, too much of either could be kryptonite to your thermofoil cabinets, leading to swelling or peeling. Regular maintenance is not just recommended; it’s a must. Keep a strict dusting routine and gently wipe them down, ensuring their luster remains intact.

Remember, quality is an investment that pays dividends in the long run. High-grade materials and specialized cleaning products guarantee that your thermofoil cabinets stay in prime condition for years.So, whether you’re a proud homeowner admiring your new kitchen or a seasoned expert giving advice, let this guide be your roadmap to maintaining the beauty and longevity of your thermofoil cabinets. After all, a well-kept kitchen is a happy kitchen, and who doesn’t love a spot of happiness in their home?

What kind of wood is used for cabinets?

There are many different kinds of wood used in cabinetry and they all vary in durability and style. The most common wood for cabinetry, especially here in Florida is Oak and Maple. There is also Pine which is typically yellow and very rustic–perfect for cabins, poplar is common for refaced cabinets, and for very lucky homeowners we sometimes see Hickory wood, one of the most expensive varieties. Before we dive in, there is definitely something terminology that needs to be covered. The very first key factor that will help you identify the kind of wood you are looking at is going to be by observing its “grain.” The grain of the wood is essentially the fingerprint, and there are different levels of thickness and imprint that helps someone identify the grain. There is also the difference between “builder grade” and “custom” cabinetry. Builder grade, in this article, will refer to the common type of wood and style we have observed in the cabinets that are normal for new homes in the Florida Market. Custom cabinetry is as it sounds. Someone–either themselves or a professional–added or built from scratch their cabinetry. And then, for the purposes of this article, there is a difference between “solid wood” and “veneer,” but we will elaborate on that in just a moment.

Identifying what kind of wood will be especially important if you are considering refinishing, because it helps set the right expectations and flexibilities for what you are working with.

What wood is cheapest for cabinets?

In the Florida market, the “cheapest” wood is going to be builder grade, which is typically Oak and then followed by Maple with veneer paneling. The reason it’s called builder grade is because the contractor likely bought for many homes in bulk with their lumber provider in selling mass quantities of easily accessible wood. Oak is identified by its very thick grain texture and in Florida is usually aged to an orange color or pickled oak (a pinkish/whitish color). The problem with Oak and why it’s so cheap is its thick grains. The grooves go deep into the wood and so after years of steam, grease, oils, etc. the moisture can get trapped deep within and can be very hard to clean. The other downside is if you are trying to modernize your cabinets into a white color, you will be able to visibly see the grain. 

The next “cheap wood” is Maple with veneer paneling. Solid Maple cabinets are actually higher quality and standard, but when it comes to Builder Grade, we’ve noticed the standard is to mix Maple wood with Maple veneer. Maple wood is identified by its smooth texture and very light grain pattern. Every once in a while there may be a knot, but lumberors are usually good at filtering those out.  Veneer is a plywood with a thin layer of Maple sheet glued on top. It helps continue the appearance of wood without the sturdy durability and hefty price tag. It is typically found in the center panel of cabinet doors as well as the sides of boxes.  Rest assured, for kitchen cabinets, this is perfectly normal practice and mimics Maple perfectly when refinishing. It’s still a good quality cabinet and will be charged as thus, just don’t be surprised if that center panel breaks if something slams into it.

Finally, every once in a while we see pine cabinets. They aren’t too common in Florida, but they are there. This is considered one of the cheapest types of wood because the material is so soft and light. It’s easily scratchable and not durable to hard, blunt accidents. They can be refinished no problem, but just make sure you are gentle even with Resurrect Wood Refinishing’s awesome polyurethane acrylic. We can only do so much with what we are working with.

What is the most durable wood for kitchen cabinets?

As mentioned, if pine is going to be one of the softest and least durable, Oak, solid Maple, and Hickory are going to be very durable wood for kitchen cabinets. Aesthetically they may vary in style, but solid wood is going to be solid wood, and would all be perfect for your kitchen cabinetry. Hickory is identified by its smooth texture but incredibly varying tones of grain color. They are very heavy doors and in our opinion are one of the most durable types of wood for kitchen cabinetry.  Hence the rarity in builder grade homes as well as increase in price compared to Oak and Maple. Hickory Cabinets are very durable, and in our expert opinion, perfect candidates for staining because of their beautiful print. 

Are solid wood cabinets worth the money?

Absolutely. Solid wood cabinets are becoming harder to find because of the veneer as mentioned above. Maple veneer is easy to mimic solid wood without the durability and cost, therefore it is very attractive to builders who are trying to save money. Solid wood cabinets provide an opportunity for some very beautiful custom millwork and will last decades if properly taken care of and regularly refinished when required. If you have the chance to invest in some new cabinets, we completely recommend the additional step for ensuring that they are solid wood. It may seem like a large price at first, but the value over time is incredibly high and makes future refinishing very easy and affordable for when it comes time to renovate and update. 

It is also to be noted that the reason we at Resurrect Wood Refinishing are huge advocates of solid wood cabinets is because they are easy to clean. Cleanliness is a major factor when preparing for a new coat of finish. While veneer is perfectly fine when handled by the right craftsman (us), there is an assurity that only solid wood can provide. Do it.

 What is better for kitchen cabinets, MDF or plywood?

Neither. We’ve noticed a lot of Do-It-Yourselves will encourage this practice because MDF and plywood are easily accessible at your local Home Depot. MDF and plywood are not recommended materials for cabinets because aesthetically they look awful and cheap. If we had to choose one or the other, then plywood is the way to go since MDF is soft and easily cracked under pressure. Plywood is suitable for a garage shelf or a bookcase, but please consider higher quality wood when it comes to your kitchen. 

Can I paint my cabinets?

Sure. You can do anything you want. Will it look nice? Eh.

Technically in this day and age you shouldn’t be painting your cabinets. Every time we have had a customer who has painted their cabinets they have always regretted it. The main reason is because the texture and quality is going to look just like that: paint. Whether it’s brushed or rolled on, or even sprayed, paint is going to make what were nice, pre-finished cabinets into, well, painted cabinets. So yes, you can paint your cabinets. But please make sure your expectations are correct.

The difference between Resurrect Wood Refinishing and Joe’s Paint Shop (or Home Depot), is we utilize a process called “Refinishing.” The procedure is about the same as painting in that our technicians mask everything up and go over your existing cabinetry with a new coat of product. But that product is a very thin, durable, and eco-friendly water based chemical called a Polyurethane Acrylic. You know that nice shiny coat of finish on hardwood floors? That’s our product,  just engineered for your cabinets. So essentially you walk on your cabinets if you really wanted to.

The best part of our process is that the finish is tintable, meaning that that paint color you fell in love with, we can copy! So you still get the beautiful color you wanted without the terrible end results of a paint job.

Can you just paint over cabinets?

Yes, but unfortunately, that ruins the cabinets for if you want them refinished later. Let’s say you are an expert painter. Let’s say that somehow you are able to do a beautiful job painting your cabinets and you are satisfied with the results. Well, the next issue is durability. That paint you used has a lifespan of about 2-3 years, unless it’s continually worn out in high traffic areas, like your cabinets. Then you could be looking at less time and needing a do-over. The problem now is with paint, you can only now cover up with more paint. If you wanted to refinish, then we have to sand/strip the existing paint you used, because our polyurethane acrylic can only adhere to wood-finish, not paint.

So just be careful. That quick-buck decision could end up trapping yourself from future renovations should you wish to maintain the existing cabinetry, and likely saves you no money at all.

Can you paint cabinets without sanding?

You can paint cabinets without sanding if the cabinets are pre-finished. However, you cannot refinish painted cabinets without sanding. As we mentioned above, it’s sort of like a one-and-done type of thing if you decide to paint. With refinishing, you have the flexibility to still paint in the future if for whatever reason you don’t like the amazing durability and odorless finish. 

Now can you refinish builder grade cabinets without sanding? Absolutely. That’s one of the best things about the process we use at Resurrect Wood Refinishing. There is no sanding which means none of that awful saw dust floating around in your kitchen. Also if there’s no sanding then there is no risk losing that beautiful profile in your existing cabinetry. 

Can kitchen cabinets be painted professionally?

If by professional you mean, “can cabinets be painted by someone who I can pay money to do it?” Yes. Yes they can. If by professional you mean if painting your cabinets will look good, then no. As explained, painting, in our opinion, ruins perfectly good cabinets. A lot of painters may say they are able to do it, but first off, painting cabinets is a completely different process than painting your wall or ceiling. There is a lot of attention to detail required since you are working on a three dimensional surface versus a solid flat wall. Second, wall paint is not the same as wood paint. And wood paint will look like wood paint and not nicely refinished cabinets. 

While there are many painting professionals who claim that they can paint your cabinets, it is a completely different skill set and product and we strongly recommend researching in order for you to set realistic expectations.

How much does it cost to paint existing kitchen cabinets?

Resurrect Wood Refinishing only offers refinishing services. The market for refinishing an average sized, 10×10  kitchen is going to be about ⅓ the cost of purchasing new cabinets. The value of our service increases with the larger the project.  From our experience with painters who try to compete with us, they usually charge about the same they would for a wall or ceiling project. So while in the short term you are getting a better deal, you are paying a cheaper price for a cheaper service. 

Paint is not durable on cabinets, it chips and peels even with a common polyurethane clear coat on top. Once the painter is done with the project, that it is. There is no guarantee and you will have to hire them again to repaint the entire kitchen should it need a refresh. With Resurrect Wood Refinishing, we do offer a touch-up service just in case in the next couple of years there’s an accident or excessive wear and tear. We get it! It’s your kitchen not a museum. We also leave touch up products upon request which covers most small bumps and dings. We understand that investing in your kitchen is not only a commitment, but it is going to be well used and well loved throughout many years. That’s why it’s very important to us at Resurrect Wood Refinishing to ensure that every customer is aware that we continue to keep communication open for future projects. Once our customer, you are always a customer. We like to say we don’t make customers, we make friends, especially with your fur babies.

Should I refinish my kitchen cabinets?

Should I refinish my kitchen cabinets?

Yes. We can start tomorrow. 

In all seriousness, it’s definitely been a trending renovation for several years now and a fantastic  question to ask whether you are wanting to update your existing dream home or resale your has-been home for a new will-be home. Are your old cabinets starting to fade in color? Are there sections that have peeled off or chipped? Do you just hate how that oak aged into orange? Then yes, you may very well be ready to start the process in thinking about refinishing your kitchen cabinets. The goal of refinishing is to help update your kitchen to as close to a factory finish as possible without the pain and aggravation and cost that comes with ripping out and buying new cabinets. It’s the best choice especially if your cabinets are in fantastic condition, despite the ugly color and blemishes. And we can help. From color selection to final touches, Resurrect Wood Refinishing can accomplish any dream you have when it comes to refinishing your kitchen.  If you are starting to ask that question then it is probably time to start.

Is it worth it to refinish kitchen cabinets?

Absolutely. Refinishing helps preserve what was already constructed, especially because more and more builder-grade cabinets are becoming incredibly cheap. Everything is becoming veneer and flat panels. Gone are the days of real maple wood or oak cabinets. Refinishing is something to absolutely consider in spite of ripping out and getting new cabinets, because not only is it cost effective but it also saves you time. Buying new cabinets can be up to a 2-3 month process, from the initial planning stages, to demolishing, construction, and final installation. All because you wanted to update the style? We don’t think it’s worth the time. Refinishing your cabinets can take a week at most and you can generally keep everything inside your cabinets. That alone is definitely a worthwhile decision because it will save you all of the pushed back deadlines. Is it worth it to be without your kitchen for 2-3 months or for just a few days? We think, especially if it’s only because you want a new color, that refinishing is the worthier option every single time. Unless, in the very rare instance, your entire cabinetry is disintegrating. Then we will be happy to provide you with new stylish doors alongside the new cabinet boxes!

Is it better to strip or sand kitchen cabinets?

Neither! Refinishing avoids sanding or stripping. Now, realistically, there are unfortunate situations that call for sanding, especially if you are wanting to refinish your kitchens. Many customers we’ve had in the past had a lot of latex paint gunked up on their cabinets. That will have to be sanded so that way the wood is prepped and ready to receive a new coat of finish. But that will only be sections as needed and never the entire kitchen cabinets. Sanding and stripping is just a tedious step for a less-than-desirable result. They are only suitable for painting which is not what we do. At Resurrect Wood Refinishing we are able to work with the existing finish without having to sand or strip the kitchen cabinets. Sanding and stripping also risks ruining the profile of any cabinet doors or added wood work like moulding or trim pieces. Plus you’re dealing with a lot of dust from sanding and toxic fumes from the stripping… It’s just not worth the risk and the only best choice is to either refinish or replace.

Is it better to paint or replace kitchen cabinets?

First off, there is a difference between painting and refinishing. Refinishing is working with the existing finish and using what is called a polyurethane acrylic, which is essentially re-engineered floor finish designed for your cabinets. It’s a water-based product so it’s eco-friendly and it’s very thin and completely odorless. It’s the best of latex paint and enamel paint. Latex paint is clean and odorless, but it’s rubber and cracks very easily. Enamel paint is stronger, but it’s toxic and cannot be sprayed to a smooth finish, and there will be an odor in your kitchen for at least 3-4 weeks after the project is complete. Refinishing takes the best traits of all of the paints without being paint. It adheres to the finish and will look factory finished. No streaks or heavy sections. Just smooth and beautiful.

Replacing cabinets are only recommended if your old wooden cabinets are damaged beyond repair or if they are laminate cabinets that are peeling. However, Resurrect Wood Refinishing does offer what we call Re-Door, and is recommended even on laminate cabinets. As long as the boxes are structurally sound, we can replace the peeled, damaged doors with nice wooden doors and then refinish them. But we never recommend painting as it will just ruin what is already existing and will most likely need to be repainted 2-4 years later due to cracks and peels.

What is the average cost to refinish kitchen cabinets?

The average cost to refinishing a kitchen will be about ⅓ of the price to replace cabinets completely. The value of refinishing goes up the larger the project is. Your $500 bathroom vanity may not be worth refinishing if it would only save you a few hundred bucks, but when you’re staring at your beautiful $30,000 maple wooden cabinets in the kitchen, then you may be incredibly surprised to know that we can refinish the whole thing for under $10,000. Plus it would only take about 4-5 business days unlike 2-3 months of replacing cabinets. And the best part is that refinishing will restore your cabinets to their former glory and increase their durability for years to come, to the point that if you sold your house, the new homeowners may not even be aware that you did refinish them at all. 

What are good colors for kitchen cabinets?

Even when we are about to move forward with a huge project, this is still the number one question we are met with, sometimes days before we begin. It can be daunting because the color is truly what can make or break a kitchen renovation. Yet in honesty, it is a very simple answer: the best colors are going to unite what is going on in the kitchen. This is why you need to decide whether this is going to be a refresh to what already exists, or if you are prepared to overhaul a new theme.

If you are going to just be refreshing, neutral colors are going to be your best friends, with new trends being to add an accent color on the island, pantry, or that beautiful built-in by the dining room table. This way you have the ability to be a little creative without feeling obligated to change the floors, countertops, backsplash, etc. 

If you decide to overhaul, then just make sure you have a uniting theme throughout all different aspects of the kitchen. Pay attention to natural light and the overall tone you wish to accomplish, but if your heart is set on some fabulous teal you just fell in love with, then just make sure it’s balanced out with everything else.

What is the best color for kitchen cabinets?

The best colors will be neutrals of the white, gray and greige variety. Some of our fan favorites are going to be a broad spectrum across different paint brands, because the good news is, we at Resurrect Refinishing can match any off-white from any catalogue across the country. For whites we recommend:

  • BEHR Swiss Coffee
  • Sherwin Williams Perfect White
  • BEHR Bit of Sugar
  • Benjamin Moore Simply White
  • Sherwin Williams Incredible White

For grays you may want to consider:

  • BEHR Shark Fin
  • BEHR Natural Grey
  • Benjamin Moore Coventry Grey

Other than that, any accent colors you just want to make sure have a place in the kitchen. If it’s an accent, it needs to be strong enough to contrast on its own while still having a place. 

What is the most popular kitchen cabinet color for 2020?

The most popular kitchen colors we saw last year were whites, blacks, and navy blues. Black was definitely coming back, and nothing more fitting we found in several of our projects was Benjamin Moore’s “Black Beauty.” For whites, we noticed an increase in cool-toned whites. Cool tones are going to pair better with greys, silvers, and black. Cool-toned whites are what justify those silver bar handles you see in IKEA. A perfect example of this was BEHR’s “Frost” color, not too warm, not too cool, but if you’ve got stainless steel appliances you’ll definitely start noticing more grey. Alternatively, if you are wanting a warmer white, then Sherwin Williams “Perfect White,” has a charming rosy undertone and it’s what we personally use in our office.

Now tea greens and navy blues can be used as the primary color for a kitchen or the accent color. We have seen both types of customers attempting to recreate Julia Child’s sage tea green kitchen completely, or delicately nodding the culinary Queen with a quaint island. Many homes are already set up for warm-toned greens because there are already a lot of tans and off-whites existing in the walls, floors, and countertops. If you like green and want to update without overhauling, then a sage tea green would be a great alternatively to playing it safe with white. Navy Blue, however, is going to be more modern and will either need to be paired with a cool-toned white or grey as an accent, or, if you want the whole kitchen to be navy blue, then we advise you have the right flooring and countertops for that pair. Last year Benjamin Moore’s “Hale Navy” was incredibly popular and we continue to use it as one of our sample doors on estimates. 

What color kitchen cabinets are in style 2020?

In addition to the popular colors already mentioned, we found glazing to be incredibly stylish last year in 2020. Resurrect Wood Refinishing offers a wide variety of glaze colors and techniques and if there’s a specific style you want, just be sure to provide a photo in your in-person estimate. For 2020 “Neat Glazes” were very stylish. A neat glaze is when our technicians paint along the borders with a paint brush to give a great accent. Typically browns and greys are traditionally popular, but in 2020 we found metallic silvers and gold incredibly trending. Pair that BM “Hale Navy” with a neat gold glaze and you’ve got yourself a beautiful modern kitchen with an added twist. Blacks, Whites, and even that Sage Green would be perfect candidates for a metallic neat glaze. It’s the perfect style.

What is the best kitchen cabinet color for resale?

The best kitchen cabinet color for resale is going to be a neutral. Unfortunately, all of the creative flash and style is going to be a huge no-no if turning over a pretty penny is your end goal. The navy blues, tea greens, glazings–while all incredibly beautiful and stylish are going to be way too personal for a resale. You want to think of a blank canvas when you are refinishing your kitchen to help add value to your resale. Solid Whites or Greys will forever help achieve the goal of making your kitchen more attractive for realtors and their prospective clients. While your kitchen may have been filled with beautiful memories and exciting color choices, the kitchen must be re-designed to welcome a new homeowner, and unfortunately, they may not have a passion for Julia Child as you did. But rest assured, once you successfully sell that home, you can always hire us again to refinish your new kitchen into that perfect Sage Green. We can custom match your kitchen to match any memorable color your cherish.