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If you’re looking to refresh your living space without breaking the bank, painting your kitchen cabinets can make a world of difference. But it can be overwhelming to tackle such a big project, especially if you’re not sure where to start. That’s where our top cabinet painting hacks come in – we’ve gathered the best tips and tricks to help you achieve a professional-looking result. Get ready to transform your kitchen cabinets and give your space a much-needed facelift!

Key Takeaways:

  • Cabinet painting hacks can help you refresh your space without spending a lot of money.
  • Our expert tips and tricks will guide you through the process of painting your kitchen cabinets.
  • Proper preparation, paint selection, and application techniques are essential for achieving professional-looking results.
  • Maintaining and caring for your painted cabinets can extend their lifespan and keep them looking new.
  • By following these cabinet painting hacks, you can revamp your space with ease.

Prepare Your Cabinets for Painting

If you want to achieve a professional-looking paint finish, preparation is key. Here are the best techniques for prepping your cabinets for a successful paint job:

Clear Out Your Cabinets

Before you start, remove all items from your cabinets and drawers. This will give you more space to work and protect your belongings from getting paint on them.

Clean Your Cabinets

Using a simple solution of soap and water, clean your cabinets thoroughly. This will remove dirt, grease, and grime that can affect the quality of your paint job. For tougher stains, use a degreaser or a mixture of vinegar and water.

Repair Any Imperfections

Inspect your cabinets for any damages such as scratches, holes, or dents. Fill them with wood filler and sand them down until they are level with the rest of the surface. This step is crucial as it will ensure a smooth and even paint application.

Sand Your Cabinets

Use fine-grit sandpaper to sand your cabinets until they are smooth to the touch. This will help the paint adhere better and ensure a more durable finish. It’s important to sand in the direction of the grain to avoid leaving visible scratches.

Prime Your Cabinets

Priming your cabinets will help the paint adhere better and last longer. Use a high-quality primer and apply it evenly with a brush or roller. This step is especially important if you have stained or dark cabinets, as it will prevent the previous color from bleeding through the paint.

By following these easy cabinet painting and best cabinet painting techniques, your cabinets will be ready for a flawless paint job.

Choose the Right Paint and Tools

Choosing the right paint and tools is essential for achieving a professional-looking finish when painting your cabinets. Using high-quality products ensures durability and enhances the visual appeal of the final outcome.

For best results, select a paint that is specifically designed for cabinets and trim. These types of paints dry to a harder finish, making them more resistant to scratches and chips. Oil-based paints are also an option, but they require longer drying times and produce more fumes. It is also important to choose a paint color that you actually like. After all, you will see that paint color on your kitchen cabinets everyday.

When it comes to tools, investing in high-quality brushes and rollers is essential. Look for brushes with synthetic bristles, as they are more durable and easier to clean than natural bristles. A 2- or 2.5-inch angled brush is perfect for painting cabinets, as it allows for precise application in tight spots.

Rollers with a high-density foam cover are best for covering large areas quickly and evenly. For cabinet painting, use a mini-roller with a 4-inch foam cover.

Lastly, consider using a paint sprayer for a professional-looking finish. Sprayers produce less mess and eliminate brush and roller marks. However, they require more preparation and cleaning time, and they can be challenging to use for inexperienced painters.

Recommended Paint and Tools for Professional Cabinet Painting

Cabinet and Trim PaintA high-quality, durable paint designed specifically for cabinets and trim. Available in a variety of finishes and colors.
Synthetic Bristle BrushA brush with synthetic bristles that is durable and easy to clean. Choose a 2- or 2.5-inch angled brush for precision.
Foam Roller CoverA high-density foam roller cover that provides smooth and even paint coverage. Use a mini-roller with a 4-inch foam cover for cabinets.
Paint SprayerA tool that sprays paint onto surfaces for a smooth and even finish. Recommended for experienced painters only.

Section 4: Clean and Repair Your Cabinets

Before you start painting your kitchen cabinets, it’s crucial to clean and repair them thoroughly. Dirt, grease, and other stains can prevent the paint from adhering properly, resulting in a subpar finish.

To clean your cabinets, start by removing any crumbs or debris with a damp cloth. Then, use a degreaser to remove any grease or other stains. You can make your own cleaning solution by mixing equal parts vinegar and water. Apply the solution with a sponge and rinse with clean water.

After cleaning your cabinets, inspect them carefully for any damage or imperfections. Look for scratches, dings, or other marks on the surface. Use wood filler to repair any imperfections, and sand the surface until it’s smooth and even.

If your cabinets are made of laminate or plastic, they will require special preparation. Use a fine-grit sandpaper to roughen up the surface, and wipe it down with a damp cloth.

Once you’ve cleaned and repaired your cabinets, they’ll be ready for painting. Follow the steps in the next sections to ensure a successful and beautiful finish.

Remove Cabinet Hardware and Doors

If you want to make the cabinet painting process easier and ensure a more even coat of paint, removing cabinet hardware and doors is highly recommended. This step allows you to paint the cabinets more thoroughly and reach all the nooks and crannies, giving you a better final result. Here are some easy steps to follow:

  1. Start by removing all the cabinet doors, drawers, and hardware, such as handles, knobs, and hinges. Use a screwdriver to take out the screws and carefully keep them in a safe place.
  2. If you’re going to reuse the hardware, clean it thoroughly with a degreaser and a scrub brush. Dry it with a cloth and keep it in a labeled container, so you don’t mix up the different pieces.
  3. Clean the cabinet frames and boxes with a mild detergent and warm water. Let them dry completely before proceeding.
  4. If you’re working with painted cabinets, it’s recommended that you sand them lightly to promote better adhesion. Use fine-grit sandpaper and rub it gently over the surface. Wipe off the dust with a damp cloth afterward.

Once you’ve removed the doors and hardware and cleaned the cabinets, you’re ready to move on to the next step: sanding and priming. Keep reading to learn more about these essential processes.

Sand and Prime Your Cabinets

Before painting your cabinets, you need to sand and prime them to ensure a smooth and even surface. Here are some painting tips and the best cabinet painting techniques to help you get started:

1. Sanding Your Cabinets

Sanding your cabinets is a crucial step in ensuring a smooth and long-lasting paint job. Start by using a 100-grit sandpaper to remove any existing finish or paint from the surface of your cabinets. Then, use a finer 220-grit sandpaper to smooth out any rough spots and create a surface that’s perfect for painting.

Tip: When sanding, always wear a mask to protect yourself from inhaling dust particles.

2. Cleaning Your Cabinets

After sanding your cabinets, use a damp cloth to wipe away any dust or debris. Allow the cabinets to dry completely before moving on to the next step.

3. Priming Your Cabinets

Priming your cabinets is the key to achieving a professional-looking finish. Apply a coat of primer to the entire surface of your cabinets, using a paintbrush or roller. Be sure to apply the primer in a thin and even layer, and allow it to dry completely before moving on to painting.

Tip: Use a tinted primer that is similar in color to your final paint to help achieve a more even finish.

4. Sanding Between Coats

After the primer has dried, lightly sand the cabinets with a 220-grit sandpaper to ensure a smooth surface. Wipe away any dust with a damp cloth before applying a second coat of primer if necessary.

Tip: Sanding between coats is essential for achieving a smooth and even finish.

Apply the Paint

Now that you’ve prepped your cabinets, it’s time to begin painting. Applying paint to your cabinets requires specific techniques to ensure an even application and a beautiful finish.

If you’re looking for an easy cabinet painting method, consider using a paint sprayer. This tool can save you time and effort, providing a smooth and even coat of paint. However, professional cabinet painting often involves traditional brush and roller techniques for greater precision and control.

When choosing your paint, opt for a high-quality, durable product that will stand up to daily wear and tear. Satin and semi-gloss finishes are popular choices for cabinets as they are easy to clean and provide a sleek look.

Before beginning, it’s essential to stir your paint thoroughly. This step ensures that the color is consistent throughout the can and results in a smooth finish. Avoid shaking the paint can, as this can introduce air bubbles that will create an uneven application.

When applying the paint, start with the backside of the cabinet doors. This technique allows you to perfect your method and test the color before committing to the front-facing surface. Use long, even brush strokes or a small foam roller for the smoothest finish.

Once the backside is complete, move on to the cabinet frame. Use a brush to paint the edges and corners, then switch to a roller for the larger, flat surfaces. Make sure to avoid any excess paint buildup, which can cause drips and clumps.

Let each coat of paint dry completely before applying another to avoid smudging or damaging the finish. Depending on the type of paint and the color, you may need to apply multiple coats for optimal coverage.

“For a professional cabinet painting job, careful attention to detail is key. Take your time and use the proper techniques to ensure a flawless finish.”

Add Finishing Touches

The final touches to your freshly painted cabinets can make a significant difference in the overall look of your space. Here are some cabinet painting hacks and best cabinet painting techniques to enhance your cabinet makeover:

  • Distressing: This technique gives your cabinets a rustic, vintage look. Use sandpaper to lightly sand the edges and corners of your cabinets, revealing some of the wood underneath.
  • Glazing: Glaze adds depth to your cabinets. Apply a coat of glaze with a brush, then wipe it off with a clean, dry cloth for an antique look.
  • Decorative Hardware: Replace your cabinet knobs and pulls with new ones that complement your freshly painted cabinets. Choose hardware that matches your kitchen’s style and color scheme, especially the color of your kitchen island.

Remember to keep the style of your entire kitchen in mind when making these decisions, as well as your personal taste and budget.

Adding finishing touches is the final step of your cabinet painting journey. Admire your new, fresh space and the hard work you’ve put into your kitchen makeover.

Reinstall Hardware and Doors

After the paint has fully cured, it’s time to reinstall the cabinet hardware and doors. This final step is essential to complete the cabinet painting process and ensure everything looks polished and put together. Use these painting tips to make sure you get it right the first time.

Begin by carefully assessing each door and drawer front to ensure they are clean and free of debris. Use a soft cloth to wipe away any dust or dirt that has accumulated during the painting process. Next, inspect the hinges and hardware, making sure all screws and bolts are tightened and in good working order.

If necessary, make any final adjustments to the hinges to ensure the doors hang straight and close properly. It’s also a good idea to label each door and drawer front using a small piece of painter’s tape. This makes it easier to know which door or drawer front goes where, especially if you painted them separately.

When you’re ready to reattach the doors and drawer fronts, start by placing the hinges back into their designated slots. Make sure they are securely fastened and aligned properly. If you removed any knobs or handles, now is the time to reattach them as well. Use a screwdriver or drill to securely fasten them into place.

Take the time to step back and review your work. Check that each door and drawer front is aligned properly and the hardware is attached securely. Once you’re satisfied with the work, you can step back and admire your freshly painted cabinets.

By following these kitchen cabinet painting tips, you can revamp your space and achieve a stunning makeover. Remember that proper preparation and attention to detail are crucial for a successful outcome. Take your time, follow the steps carefully, and enjoy the satisfaction of a beautifully painted cabinet makeover.

Maintain and Care for Painted Cabinets

After you’ve completed your cabinet painting project, it’s essential to implement proper maintenance and care to keep your cabinets looking their best for years to come. Follow these tips to extend the life of your painted cabinets:


Regular cleaning is essential to keep your cabinets looking their best. Avoid using harsh chemicals or abrasive cleaners that can damage the paint finish. Instead, use a mild cleaning solution and a soft cloth to gently wipe down your cabinets.

For stubborn stains or grease buildup, mix a solution of warm water and mild dish soap and apply it to the affected area. Let it sit for a few minutes, then gently scrub with a soft-bristled brush. Rinse with warm water and dry with a clean cloth.

Avoiding Damage

To prevent damage to your newly painted cabinets, avoid placing hot pots or pans directly on the surface. Use trivets or hot pads instead.

Be careful when opening and closing cabinet doors and drawers to avoid scratching or chipping the paint. Avoid slamming doors or drawers and use gentle pressure when opening and closing them.


Over time, your painted cabinets may develop small scratches or chips. To keep your cabinets looking their best, touch up any imperfections as soon as you notice them.

For small scratches or chips, use a small brush to carefully apply touch-up paint to the affected area. For larger areas, you may need to repaint the entire cabinet or section of the cabinet.

Professional Cabinet Painting

While it’s possible to paint your cabinets on your own, hiring a professional cabinet painting company can ensure a higher quality and longer-lasting result. Professional painters have the experience, equipment, and knowledge to properly prepare and paint your cabinets.

If you’re looking for an easy cabinet painting experience, consider hiring a professional. They can also provide valuable advice on maintaining and caring for your painted cabinets.


Embarking on a cabinet painting project can be simplified with these key tips and tricks. From preparation to selecting the right paint, and from applying finishing touches to proper maintenance, you can dramatically change your space’s appearance.

However, for those seeking a flawless, professional finish without the hassle, consider reaching out to Gonzalez Painters & Contractors. Our expert team specializes in cabinet painting, ensuring a stunning and durable result that completely transforms your space. Contact us to bring your vision to life with ease and excellence. Let us handle the details while you enjoy the transformation of your cabinets!


Can I paint over laminate cabinets?

Yes, you can paint over laminate cabinets. However, proper preparation is crucial to ensure the paint adheres well. Make sure to clean the surface, sand it lightly, and use a primer designed for laminate surfaces before applying paint.

How long does it take for painted cabinets to dry?

The drying time for painted cabinets can vary depending on factors such as humidity and the type of paint used. Generally, it can take anywhere from 24 to 48 hours for the paint to dry completely. It’s important to avoid touching or using the cabinets until they are fully dry.

Can I paint cabinets without sanding?

While sanding is recommended for achieving the best results, there are some alternatives for painting cabinets without sanding. Look for products that are specifically designed to adhere to surfaces without sanding, or consider using a deglosser to prepare the surface before painting.

How many coats of paint do I need for cabinets?

The number of coats of paint you’ll need for your cabinets will depend on factors such as the current color, the desired color, and the type of paint you’re using. In most cases, applying at least two coats of paint will give you good coverage and a smooth finish.

Can I paint cabinets with a brush or should I use a roller?

Both brushes and rollers can be used to paint cabinets, and the choice will depend on personal preference and the desired finish. Brushes are great for reaching into corners and detailed areas, while rollers can provide a smoother and more even finish on larger surfaces.

Contact Gonzalez Painters & Contractors

When you need interior painting services and exterior painting services, or other residential contracting services for roofingsidinggutter, or drywall, call Gonzalez Painters & Contractors at (919) 477-6058 or contact us online. We have been serving the Triangle area since 2000, and are the name to trust for painting and home contracting services in DurhamApexHillsboroughChapel HillCaryRaleighCarrboro, and other nearby locations.

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