Author Topic: painting kitchen cabinets, want a professional look  (Read 12101 times)

Transmatic

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painting kitchen cabinets, want a professional look
« on: June 07, 2014, 05:33:40 PM »
Wife and I bought a fixer upper 18 months ago. Our home hasn't been updated since the 80's but we have done TONS of updating since we moved in (lay tile in both all 3 bathrooms, paint ever single room, paint all trim, doors and baseboards, etc).

Next on my list is the kitchen cabinets. I have a lot of hours and experience as a painter, even a full summer in college. However, I want to get the most professional look possible when I paint our kitchen cabinets white. Looking for reccomendations as to which technique will give me the best finished look. Use a fine brush, roller, or a spray gun (borrowed from a buddy)? I'm aware of the prep work of deglossing etc. but I want to ensure the paint looks good and doesn't stick to itself when the cabinet doors close and peel paint off.

oldladystache

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Re: painting kitchen cabinets, want a professional look
« Reply #1 on: June 07, 2014, 05:40:11 PM »
I love the look of wood cabinets. If they were mine I wouldn't let you paint them. But they aren't mine, so whatever.

Frankies Girl

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Re: painting kitchen cabinets, want a professional look
« Reply #2 on: June 07, 2014, 07:02:28 PM »
Your cabinets actually look pretty nice. If it was me, I'd ditch the awful knobs/pulls that are on the lower ones for something more updated and just give them a good cleaning with a degreaser (or Murphy's if it's not too bad buildup) and then do a wipedown with orange oil.

http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/how-to-quickly-154404

But painting them, if done well, can look good too. I saw this a while back and bookmarked it as I have crappy orangy/yellow "oak" builder grade cabinets and do plan on either painting or replacing as the color is hideous. ;)

http://www.thefrugalgirl.com/2014/05/how-to-paint-kitchen-cabinets/

Transmatic

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Re: painting kitchen cabinets, want a professional look
« Reply #3 on: June 07, 2014, 07:14:23 PM »
Thanks for the link.

I wouldn't paint them if it were up to me....this is all my wife's idea. Considering I have 3 full days putting a new roof on the house and 50+ hours redoing the backyard this year, and the fact that she's been asking me to do this for over a year, I don't have much choice.

We already have new knobs and hardware to replace the horrible ones that you see in the photo. We actually got them as a Christmas gift from my mom, so no money spent on hardware.

I'm about to replace the interesting adobe colored floor. My wife's grandpa owns a furniture and appliance store so I can get all my supplies at his cost (extremely cheap). The top cabinets had the same awful knobs but they were directly in the middle of each door, it was the most awkward thing. I removed them the day we moved in 18 months ago.

Still trying to decide if hand painting with high quality brush or using a spray gun will give me a better finish.

iris lily

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Re: painting kitchen cabinets, want a professional look
« Reply #4 on: June 07, 2014, 07:33:15 PM »
Use a very fine brush and very very high end oil paint.

DH built our kitchen cabinets from unpainted poplar, a fine grained wood. I wanted painted cabinets so that's why we chose that finish. The first paint job lasted 15 years, with DH doing it. We hired someone else to do the 2nd paint job 3 years ago, a nice guy but largely unskilled, and already the paint is wearing thin and sliding off.
« Last Edit: June 08, 2014, 06:20:25 AM by iris lily »

geekette

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Re: painting kitchen cabinets, want a professional look
« Reply #5 on: June 07, 2014, 07:58:21 PM »
These guys give good info.

ephillipsme

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Re: painting kitchen cabinets, want a professional look
« Reply #6 on: June 09, 2014, 01:55:27 PM »
I have recently completed a similar project of painting over older cabinets. The cabinets were in good shape but were a dark stain and we painted them to brighten up the kitchen.  I removed all the doors and hardware.  I started with washing the cabinets using TSP which is available in painting stores or hardware stores in the paint section.  I then used a sandpaper to smooth out some rough areas.  I repaired any dings and chalked all the gaps.  I then used a primer that was specific for use over stained wood and was enamel for a harder finish.  I painted with a enamel which goes on thicker and products a harder finish. I use Sherwin Williams enamla and the links are below.

Primer
http://www.sherwin-williams.com/homeowners/products/catalog/all-surface-enamel-latex-primer/?referringCategory=interior-paint-coatings/primers/

Paint
http://www.sherwin-williams.com/homeowners/products/catalog/proclassic-interior-acrylic-latex/?referringCategory=interior-paint-coatings/paint/


good luck
« Last Edit: October 08, 2014, 07:38:39 AM by ephillipsme »

luigi49

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Re: painting kitchen cabinets, want a professional look
« Reply #7 on: June 09, 2014, 04:27:04 PM »
Wife and I bought a fixer upper 18 months ago. Our home hasn't been updated since the 80's but we have done TONS of updating since we moved in (lay tile in both all 3 bathrooms, paint ever single room, paint all trim, doors and baseboards, etc).

Next on my list is the kitchen cabinets. I have a lot of hours and experience as a painter, even a full summer in college. However, I want to get the most professional look possible when I paint our kitchen cabinets white. Looking for reccomendations as to which technique will give me the best finished look. Use a fine brush, roller, or a spray gun (borrowed from a buddy)? I'm aware of the prep work of deglossing etc. but I want to ensure the paint looks good and doesn't stick to itself when the cabinet doors close and peel paint off.

I painted ours 20 years ago when i was poor.  The paint is still holding up.  I used wagner sprayer.  I don't remember the paint.  I would also use kilz. 

Weedy Acres

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Re: painting kitchen cabinets, want a professional look
« Reply #8 on: June 09, 2014, 08:40:54 PM »
I used SW Pro Classic and have been very happy with it.  They seem to have constant sales and coupons for 30% off, so don't pay full (over)price.

In general, they say a brush will give you a more "classic/vintage " feel while spray is more like factory finish.  Me, I use a good brush.  I tried a sprayer once and it was more trouble than it was worth.  If you've been a pro, ymmv.

ephillipsme

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Re: painting kitchen cabinets, want a professional look
« Reply #9 on: June 10, 2014, 01:41:43 PM »
Yes Sherwin Williams has a lot of sales and coupons.  You can sign up for via email and I seem to get a 30-50% off coupon every couple months.  the Pro Classic Enamel is a hard finish paint and great for cabinets, but it is fairly pricy @ 60$ gal unless you get it on sale. 

Transmatic

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Re: painting kitchen cabinets, want a professional look
« Reply #10 on: June 10, 2014, 06:55:27 PM »
Thanks for the advice and helpful links. I've looked over everything multiple times and I'm confident the final product will look great. I think my buddy can get SW paint at contractor pricing so I'll see if that's cheaper than using a coupon. I've used cheaper types of paint in the past and would never do it again. I'll pay a few extra dollars for a high quality paint.

Powers

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Re: painting kitchen cabinets, want a professional look
« Reply #11 on: June 11, 2014, 03:24:33 PM »
I really recommend using a sprayer - it gives you the best finish by far.  I did this very project about 6 months ago (first time using a sprayer) and am very happy with the results.  There was one false drawer that we were forced to hand paint, and I always notice the brush strokes since it's right next to a glassy smooth sprayed drawer.  I wish we had figured out a way to spray it as well.

We used simple kilz primer and an oil based SW paint - I have read/heard that oil based is best in the kitchen because it's tougher and easier to clean in an area where it's likely to get all kinds of food and liquid splatters. 

One tip I'd like to pass on - make sure your compressor is powerful enough for the gun you're using.  I was borrowing a friend's compressor and assumed it was enough, but the primer kept splattering (albeit lightly).  Turns out, even though it was a decent sized compressor (3-5 gal range, portable but still big), the SCFM was not sufficient.  Our gun required 5.4 SCFM @ 60 PSI, and the compressor only put out around 4.0.  We ended up renting a more powerful one from HD, and it made a world of difference. 

chasesfish

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Re: painting kitchen cabinets, want a professional look
« Reply #12 on: September 20, 2014, 05:24:33 AM »
I'm actually going through a similar project right now.

We pained a test cabinet, the SW Pro really shows the imperfections from 65 years of wear, it makes the imperfections of the smooth surface stand out.  Am I going to have to suck it up and sand every one of them, or is there another paint option?

bluecollarmusician

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Re: painting kitchen cabinets, want a professional look
« Reply #13 on: September 20, 2014, 06:10:32 AM »
Many pros swear by hand painting.... Most will hand paint the cabinets and spray the doors, but lots of old timers hand paint the doors too.   Usually a high quality oil based with some penetrol added to it.... Put it on with a nice brush and the finish will be like glass.  Generally , use a roller to the paint on and then "tip" it with the brush.   If you have access to a sprayer that can yield excellent results.... Just know that there is a bit of a learning curve there too.... Better to practice on some scrap to get your technique down.   I have done both and have been happy with all results.   As always, you prep will determine how good a finish you can get on the cabs.  You are a diyer , so take your time and you will get great results you are proud of.   

Mrs. PoP

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Re: painting kitchen cabinets, want a professional look
« Reply #14 on: September 20, 2014, 07:11:11 AM »
I've been reading Addicted 2 Decorating and she recently had a recommendation for a high quality fine mist sprayer that worked wonderfully on her painted cabinets - called a Critter.  Price seemed good at $40 on Amazon.  Number 5 on the list in this post: http://www.addicted2decorating.com/essential-diy-power-tools.html

Technically the sprayer itself isn't even a power tool since it attaches to mason jars you fill with paint and uses a separate air compressor that you have to pressurize the spray.  More of an attachment than a power tool.

Mrs. Frugalwoods

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Re: painting kitchen cabinets, want a professional look
« Reply #15 on: September 20, 2014, 11:15:56 AM »
My husband and I hand-painted our wooden kitchen cabinets white last year and, if you're interested, I wrote up the whole process here: http://www.frugalwoods.com/2014/05/03/how-to-refinish-kitchen-cabinets-part-1/.

We used Benjamin Moore Advance Paint and Stix Urethane Acrylic Waterborne Bonding Primer. It was labor intensive, but totally doable and we're very pleased with the results. We looked into renting a sprayer but didn't want to incur the expense or hassle of taping off the rest of our house (we have a very open floor plan).

Here's our "after" photo (I never get tired of looking at the kitchen now!)

chasesfish

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Re: painting kitchen cabinets, want a professional look
« Reply #16 on: September 21, 2014, 05:25:04 AM »
Frugalwoods - You have the exact kitchen we're building, ours came with the almost identical appliances and we had to redo the flooring and left it hardwood. 

We're going to have to do (or pay for) the countertop to be installed.  I don't know if we'll be able to do the backsplash ourselves, we have a curved laminate counter top that also is the back splash currently.

Do you happen to know exactly what your backsplash or cabinet pulls are?  As in where they're from or the model?

I appreciate your reply

Mrs. Frugalwoods

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Re: painting kitchen cabinets, want a professional look
« Reply #17 on: September 21, 2014, 05:54:51 AM »
Frugalwoods - You have the exact kitchen we're building, ours came with the almost identical appliances and we had to redo the flooring and left it hardwood. 

We're going to have to do (or pay for) the countertop to be installed.  I don't know if we'll be able to do the backsplash ourselves, we have a curved laminate counter top that also is the back splash currently.

Do you happen to know exactly what your backsplash or cabinet pulls are?  As in where they're from or the model?

I appreciate your reply
I so wish I could help you out--unfortunately, the backsplash tiles and drawer pulls were here when we bought the house. We just removed all the hardware and painted the ugly wood cabinets.

I measured them, which I hope might be helpful:
-Backsplash tiles are translucent sage green glass and they measure 6" wide x 3" tall
-The cabinet pulls are brushed nickel rectangles that measure a little over 5" long

I'm sorry I don't have more details on them!

Simple Abundant Living

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Re: painting kitchen cabinets, want a professional look
« Reply #18 on: September 21, 2014, 07:48:37 AM »
I've looked into this for a while now.  I finally decided that the look I really wanted was from lacquer paint. You can probably rent the sprayer, but I don't know if its a DIY job.  The good thing is that lacquer dries really fast and they can get done in a couple days with a professional crew. 

The other thing I've seen lately is chalk painted cabinets finished with coats of poly.  This is better if you want a rustic, distressed look.  People say you can do a whole kitchen in a couple days for $200. Search on Pinterest "chalk paint kitchen cabinets."

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Linea_Norway

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Re: painting kitchen cabinets, want a professional look
« Reply #20 on: April 12, 2017, 09:26:12 AM »
How about using asmall roller? We have been using that when painting a door. My DH has also painted a selfbuilt cupboard with a roller and that looks really professional.

MasterStache

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Re: painting kitchen cabinets, want a professional look
« Reply #21 on: June 02, 2017, 06:07:24 AM »
I would like to suggest you hire a professional painter or Company because DIY could be hectic and expensive. Get free quote here [spam link removed]

Nice advertisement.
« Last Edit: June 04, 2017, 09:17:07 AM by FrugalToque »

Mgmny

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Re: painting kitchen cabinets, want a professional look
« Reply #22 on: June 02, 2017, 07:35:44 AM »
Old thread, but we painted our cabinets. We used a product called, "Smart Prime" to prime them, and used Hirschfield's Satin Impervo paint (color: Gray Owl). We cleaned them thoroughly, and used sandpaper to rough them up a bit to give it tooth. I'll toss before and afters below:



After:


Linea_Norway

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Re: painting kitchen cabinets, want a professional look
« Reply #23 on: June 04, 2017, 05:00:51 AM »
A nice and fresh result. I see you also got a new surface which looks nice. I guess this job has improved the value of your house. Congrats.

Mgmny

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Re: painting kitchen cabinets, want a professional look
« Reply #24 on: June 05, 2017, 06:38:47 AM »
A nice and fresh result. I see you also got a new surface which looks nice. I guess this job has improved the value of your house. Congrats.

Thanks! The surface looks fantastic, and it's actually Formica.We paid about $1100 total for it including custom edge profiles (beveled edges to avoid the tell-tale Laminate brown line), installation, and backsplash. It turned out really nice. No maintenance, easy to clean, and won't stain and etch like real marble.

sokoloff

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Re: painting kitchen cabinets, want a professional look
« Reply #25 on: June 05, 2017, 06:51:47 AM »
One tip I'd like to pass on - make sure your compressor is powerful enough for the gun you're using.  I was borrowing a friend's compressor and assumed it was enough, but the primer kept splattering (albeit lightly).  Turns out, even though it was a decent sized compressor (3-5 gal range, portable but still big), the SCFM was not sufficient.  Our gun required 5.4 SCFM @ 60 PSI, and the compressor only put out around 4.0.  We ended up renting a more powerful one from HD, and it made a world of difference.
Another compressor-related tip: Make sure the tank isn't full of water (that condenses out of the air being compressed) when you start and, if possible, find a way to condense the water out of the air before it goes into the line to spray. That could be as simple as a large, cool tank (when the compressor tank is warm to the touch, stop painting, let it cool, drain the water, and resume), or as complex as an inter-cooler/after-cooler/dryer setup.

For a small job, simply having a cool, initially dry tank is probably enough.

Grantstacey

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Re: painting kitchen cabinets, want a professional look
« Reply #26 on: June 08, 2017, 05:03:39 PM »
Hey there,

I am a cabinetmaker and finisher and I have some thoughts, especially if you are after a premium quality finish.

First, are the doors solid wood or veneered? If they are solid wood I would recommend sanding them to remove the old top coat and to scuff the substrate for the paint that you will eventually apply. If however, they are veneered you need to be careful when sanding them as veneer is typically 0.5mm thick and it can be easier than you think to sand through this very thin layer of wood. If the doors are already very smooth you will only need to sand them with 220P or 320P sandpaper. All you are doing are making small micro scratches that allow the primer to adhere effectively.

Second, for paint grade it is best to use a primer coat that is 1/2 tinted to the desired color of white for your top coat. Primers are cheaper than top coats so this is an effective way to get a good buildup of paint on the substrate and begin to hide what was on the door previously. This is especially important when painting anything white that was previously a dark color.

I would also highly recommended using a spray gun. Brushes leave brush strokes and you cannot compete with the efficiency and quality of sprayed finish. To brush on a coat of paint of great quality would take years of practice compared to the small amount of time and practice involved with figuring out how to use a spray gun properly. I recommend getting some MDF and practicing with that. Your passes should have a 50% overlap and I recommend spraying the doors horizontally (laying down) to avoid the paint running. Furthermore, when painting a panel with a sprayer I recommend you sequence you coats by spraying the back of the door + the edges then once the paint has cured flip over the panel and spray the face.

Lastly, figure out what sort of paint you will be using and if it requires a chemical bond or a mechanical bond. Chemical bond means that each new coat of paint you apply reactivates the previous coat (due to the solvent) and they melt together. If however the paint requires a mechanical bond then you will need to "scuff" the substrate between each coat. Scuffing, as indicated earlier is when you make small micro scratches in the previous coat of paint which allows the new coat of paint to bond to the substrate.

P.S. Most paint is harmful and is full or carcinogens. Make sure to wear the correct mask to filter out these harmful chemicals especially when using a sprayer which atomizes the paint particles and fills the air. Ideally you want to paint in a ventilated but enclosed space so be sure to wear tyvek coveralls as well.

I hope this was helpful.