Cabinet Refinishing – A Cost-Effective Way to Refresh Your Kitchen

San Jose Cabinet Refinishing or restaining, is a great way to refresh your kitchen. It’s a cost-effective option if your cabinets have good structural integrity and need a new shade.

Cabinet Refinishing

However, refinishing is limited because it doesn’t allow you to change your door style or wood species. It’s best used for natural-grained materials.

Cabinet refinishing is an excellent way to update the look of your kitchen without spending a fortune. The refinishing cost will depend on the type of new finish you choose and the work required to achieve your desired result. You can save money by avoiding expensive customizations and opting out of glazing. You can also reduce costs by bundling other painting projects or purchasing hardware at a discount from your refinishing professional.

While materials like stain and paint are generally included in the overall estimate from your refinishing professional, other factors can add to the cost of your project. For example, changing the color of your cabinets will take more time and require more coats of new finish than keeping them the same. If your doors and drawers have ornate trim or carving, they may be more difficult to refinish than those that are simpler. It is also important to consider the style of your kitchen and whether you want to match the new finish to your floors or backsplash tiles.

Another factor to consider is the type of wood used for your cabinets. For example, if your cabinets are made from medium-density fiberboard (MDF), they won’t hold up to staining, even if they’re painted. If your cabinet doors are solid wood, they’ll be able to accept stain, but you might need to spend more time sanding to remove the existing finish before you can apply a new one.

Sanding is the most time-consuming aspect of the refinishing process, and the duration will depend on the type of wood and the type of finish you’re applying. For instance, sanding an untrimmed oak door can take 15 to 45 minutes per side, and you’ll need to double the time to sand each door if it has ornate trim or windows.

In addition to refinishing the cabinet doors, you’ll also need to refinish the cabinet boxes and face frames to make them match the new door and drawer fronts. This will involve sanding and priming the cabinets to prepare them for painting. It’s important to allow sufficient time for the primer and paint to dry before the cabinet boxes are transported back to your home.


If your cabinet doors are still in good shape, but you’re ready for a change, you have the option of refacing or refinishing. Refacing replaces the existing cabinet doors and drawer fronts, while refinishing changes their color. Refacing can be more expensive than refinishing, but it’s also more permanent. Brand new doors and drawer fronts are expected to last up to 50 years, while refinishing will likely only hold up for about 20 or so.

It’s important to choose the right paint for your cabinets. It’s best to work with a professional who can provide recommendations on the type of paint and finish you need for your kitchen cabinets. They’ll be able to explain the differences between an oil-based and water-based paint and how the different types of finishes will stand up over time. Choosing a high-quality paint will help the finish last longer and reduce the need for future refinishing or repainting.

Cabinet refinishing is a labor-intensive project that requires careful and thorough prep work to get the best results. The surface must be thoroughly cleaned, sanded, and prepped for primer and then paint. Depending on the type of finish you choose, additional steps may be required, such as a stain or lacquer. This process takes several days, so you’ll need to plan accordingly. If you have other rooms in your home that need painting, it’s a great idea to bundle the projects together to save on labor costs.

Refinishing can be very messy, and it’s important to protect yourself and your surroundings while working. A mask is a must, and you should wear safety goggles when applying stains and lacquers. It’s also important to consider the environmental impact of your refinishing project. Refinishing creates a lot of waste, so it’s important to dispose of it properly. This can reduce your overall carbon footprint and help the environment.

Another way to lower your environmental impact is by refacing rather than refinishing your cabinets. Approximately 9 million tons of wood and other material end up in landfills every year, and many of these items could have been reused or recycled. Refacing is a greener alternative to refinishing, because it uses your existing cabinet boxes and only replaces the door and drawer fronts.

Environmental Impact

Cabinet refinishing is an environmentally friendly option for updating your kitchen. It uses existing materials and reduces waste compared to tearing out and replacing cabinets. It also allows for more customization and saves time and money. However, it is important to find a professional who can properly sand and finish the cabinets so they last. This is essential because improper sanding and painting can lead to peeling within a few weeks. It is also important to have your cabinets refinished in a well-ventilated area. If you don’t, you may end up with toxic fumes in your home.

Traditional wood furniture manufacturing is energy-intensive, resulting in a large amount of organic hazardous air pollutants (HAPs) such as toluene, xylene, methyl ethyl ketone, methyl isobutyl ketone, and glycol ethers. These harmful chemicals can be released into the air while sanding, causing respiratory problems and other health issues for you and your family. When refinishing your cabinets, make sure to use a reputable company that has proper ventilation and follow all the steps in the process.

Disposing of your old cabinets at landfill sites can contribute to climate change by releasing toxins and greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. In addition, refinishing your cabinets instead of replacing them will help reduce the need for new lumber and other resources. Many of the cheaper cabinets available at big-box stores are made from MDF, which contains formaldehyde, a dangerous chemical that can leach into soil and water.

If you decide to refinish your cabinets rather than reface them, you can customize the look with paint, stain, and other finishes. While refacing is possible, it is usually more expensive than refinishing and requires much more time. Refacing is also not as durable as refinishing and can require frequent repairs.

Another advantage of refinishing your cabinets is that it can improve your home’s value and increase its resale potential. This is because refinishing is less expensive than a complete remodel and can hide minor wear and tear and blemishes. However, it’s important to remember that if your cabinets are in poor condition, they can significantly lower your home’s resale value.


Cabinet refinishing is an economical and environmentally friendly alternative to buying new cabinets. It uses your existing cabinetry and lets you choose a color, design, hardware, and more. You can also make additional changes to your kitchen with this project, including adding new doors or drawer fronts. You can even add molding and trim to your cabinets to change the style of your kitchen.

However, it’s important to hire a professional who can do quality work. Refinishers should use high-quality paint and coatings that will last. They should also be certified by the Kitchen Cabinet Manufacturers Association (KCMA) to ensure that they’re using the best products for your home. These professionals should also be familiar with the various kitchen cabinet refinishing techniques.

The first step of the process is cleaning the cabinets. It is important to remove any grease, dirt, or food residue before refinishing your cabinets. This can be done by scraping the surfaces and scrubbing with synthetic steel wool or soap and water. If you have a lot of grease, you can try using a solvent like TSP to dissolve it. After cleaning the cabinets, they should be thoroughly sanded with medium-grit sanding sponges or 180-grit sandpaper on a random orbital sander. Once all of the sanding is done, you should vacuum and tack rag off the dust to prepare them for painting.

When you’re ready to start your cabinet refinishing project, it’s essential to have a good plan for the entire process. This will save you time and money and ensure that your project is completed in a timely manner. Having a plan will also help you stay on budget and avoid any surprises along the way. If you’re unsure where to begin, consult with an experienced professional who can help you decide what’s right for your home. They can explain the benefits of each option and recommend the best approach for your situation. They can also provide you with quotes from top-rated professionals in your area.