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Cabinet Refinishing – Give Your Cabinets a Fresh Look

Cabinet Refinishing San Jose CA is an option that allows you to keep your existing cabinets and give them a fresh new look. It is usually cheaper than refacing and takes much less time.

Cabinet Refinishing

Refinishing your kitchen cabinet doors involves stripping the old paint or stain, sanding, and priming. The doors then receive two coats of color or a dye, with light sand between each.

Painting your cabinets is a cost-effective way to refresh the look of your kitchen without having to invest in expensive new hardware. It is also a good option if you want to change the color of your cabinets or simply update them to a more modern style. However, cabinet refinishing requires meticulous work and time to ensure a quality finish that stands up well to daily use and exposure to heat and moisture.

A quality paint job can make your kitchen look brand new and add significant value to your home. The key is to hire a professional who is experienced in refinishing cabinetry, has references and is properly insured and licensed. They should take the time to thoroughly clean all surfaces and carefully tape off areas where necessary, and also allow adequate drying time between coats.

You should also be aware that not all cabinet paints are created equal, and it is important to choose a product that is designed for high-traffic areas like kitchens. The natural oils in our skin break down acrylic paints over time, and when this happens, chipping and peeling occur. Paints that are formulated for cabinets are specifically made to resist this wear and tear, making them more durable and long-lasting.

Using the right tools is another crucial factor in achieving a great-looking finished result. Choosing brushes and rollers that are the proper size for the surface you are working with will save you time, as well as helping to prevent sloppy coverage. It is also important to use a degreasing cleaner before applying the first coat of paint, and to allow it to dry completely. This will help the subsequent coats of paint adhere to the surface better and will prevent the need for repeated applications.

Be sure to remove all of the doors and drawers from your cabinet boxes and label them with a permanent marker before starting the process. This will make it much easier for you to reassemble your kitchen afterward and will help you keep track of which items go where. Once you have your cabinets painted, it is wise to wait a few days before reinstalling them in order to give the paint time to fully cure to a hard enamel-like finish that is resistant to staining and scratching.


Stain offers a natural look that many homeowners enjoy. It allows the natural grain of wood to show through, providing a richer finish than paint. It’s also water-resistant, making it easy to clean spills and splashes without worrying about ruining or staining the finish. Stain also tends to match color touch-up markers better than paint, which can often have a noticeable hue difference in varying temperatures.

Before you can apply stain, though, it’s important to prepare your cabinet doors and drawer fronts for the project. Remove all hardware and set the pieces aside in a labeled container or on a dedicated work area so they won’t get lost or misplaced during the process. Vacuum and wipe down the cabinets, removing any dust that may have accumulated during sanding.

Then, clean the cabinet and door surfaces using trisodium phosphate (TSP), a heavy-duty cleaning powder that works great on wood. Mix the product according to its instructions and use a sponge to scrub each surface. Make sure to thoroughly wash the cabinet and door bevels and textured areas, as well as any other areas that might be difficult to reach with a flat brush.

After the cabinets have dried, it’s time to stain. First, make sure the surface you’re working with can accept stain by sanding again. This time, you’ll want to use a 150- to 220-grit paper and be sure to sand in the direction of the wood grain. Wipe away the excess stain within a few minutes after applying it to lighten the color or leave on for longer for a darker shade.

Be sure to test your stain on a small section of the cabinet or door. It’s also important to let the stain dry for a few hours before you begin to touch it up. Apply several coats of stain as necessary to achieve the color you’re aiming for. If you’re going from a dark to lighter shade, more coats will be required than if you were starting with a light color. If your new stain doesn’t look as good as you expected, lightly scuff the surface with steel wool after it has cured for several hours before applying a second coat.


A glaze can transform a stained or painted cabinet door into something elegant and beautiful. It is usually a dark pigmented glaze applied with a brush or sponge to highlight the details on the cabinet door, and then wiped off. The wiped off areas leave a darker highlight that can appear antiqued or distressed, depending on the color you choose. It is also a great option for cabinets with a lot of detailing, like grooves or carved edges.

Cabinet glazes can be either warm or cool, and your kitchen design specialist can help you decide which style will best suit your home. It is always a good idea to test the glaze on a small area of the cabinet first, so you can see how it looks and feel comfortable with it before applying it to the whole kitchen.

Before attempting to apply any type of glaze, it is important that you thoroughly clean the cabinet doors. Using a degreaser spray or a rag dipped in degreaser, wipe all surfaces to remove any dirt and oils that may interfere with a clean finish. If necessary, use a wood filler to repair any dents or holes. Once everything is repaired and clean, it is time to start prepping the cabinet for painting.

Begin by wiping the cabinet with a damp cloth to remove any remaining dust and debris. Then, spray the cabinets with a high-quality, low odor primer. The best one I’ve used is KILZ 3(r), which is easy to work with, adheres beautifully and blocks stains. It is also low-odor, so you can continue living in your home while working on the cabinets.

After the cabinets are primed, it is time to prepare them for staining. If you are going from a light color to a darker color, it will take much more sanding and prep than if you are going the other way around. It is also a good idea to use a stain conditioner on the wood before you start staining. This will help the stain absorb better and prevent blotching or unevenness. After the stain dries, you should apply a clear topcoat to protect your new finish.

Brush Coat

Cabinets are one of the most used items in a home, and like any item they can become worn down from daily use. Many homeowners decide to refinish their cabinets to fix scratches, gouges and stains that occur over time. The best way to do this is to either stain or paint the cabinets. Staining is great for a natural wood look while painting offers a more modern and clean finish. Both options are effective but a professional should always be hired to perform the work for safety and quality reasons.

Before you can refinish your cabinets you must first remove any hardware and carefully sand the existing surface. This is a crucial step as improper prep can compromise the entire project. This could result in a less durable finish or even chipping. Once you have sanded the cabinets down to the bare wood it is a good idea to prime them, this will create a surface for the paint to adhere to. A primer is also a good way to protect the raw wood and make it easier to wipe down in the future.

Once the primer has dried it is time to apply the final coat of paint. A professional will always use a high-quality paint to ensure the final result is beautiful and long-lasting. A pro will always tape off edges and lays down plastic sheeting to prevent overspray, this is important because any overspray can damage surfaces such as countertops, wall paint or furniture. They will also paint in a consistent pattern to avoid smears or uneven coverage.

There are several types of paint that a professional can choose from; oil, latex and a few specialty paints. Latex paints are the most popular because they offer a more user-friendly clean up and are water based. However, professional painters will generally opt for an oil based paint as it provides a harder and more durable finish that will last longer.

Once the final coat of paint has dried it is a good idea to put on two coats of polyurethane. This will help keep your cabinets looking new for a much longer period of time and it will also protect the paint from water damage, which is common in kitchens.