Secrets to Finishing Unfinished Cabinets Like a Pro

exepensive or cheapSo you bought your unfinished cabinets and you’re excited to get started on getting them ready for installation. If you’re new to painting or staining, don’t worry. Whether you bought expensive cabinets or cheap cabinets, there is a consistent way to get a flawless finish. While the steps to finishing the best kitchen cabinets are quite simple, there are other things that influence the smoothness of the project. Here are some secrets that professionals use to get a flawless finish without the headache.

Tip 1: Plan Your Cost and Timeline

Most pros recommend allowing two weeks to complete your project on your unfinished cabinets.

The cost for refinishing supplies hangs around $200. You’ll be excited to know that you’re probably saving up to $3,000 in labor costs by doing this yourself. That’s a whole lot of money saved by purchasing unfinished cabinets.

Tip 2: Sand the Surfaces

Carpenter Using Electric SanderOne of the most common mistakes in a finishing project is to neglect to sand the wood. The best kitchen cabinets are always sanded before they are finished. Sanding opens the pores of the wood if you choose to stain, and it helps the paint stick if you choose to paint. Use medium grit first when sanding, and use fine grit to resolve scratches.

Tip 3: Clean the Wood After Sanding

Dust particles are a consequence of sanding, and they are a complete nuisance if they aren’t removed completely. Painting over dust will give your cabinets a gritty texture and interferes with the bonding process. Avoid these problems by vacuuming after sanding, wiping the wood with a cloth, and using compressed air to work out any dust that got stuck in the grain.

Tip 4: Don’t Forget the Primer or Conditioner!

If you’re staining your unfinished discount cabinets, you’ll need to condition the wood first to ensure that the stain absorbs evenly. Primer ensures an even application for paint, and it is necessary for proper bonding to the wood. Use tinted primer if you are using dark or bold colors.

Tip 5: Use an HVLP Paint Sprayer to Get a Factory-Finished Look

No matter how skilled you are, using a paint brush will leave brush strokes. If this is the desired effect, you may be satisfied. Otherwise, you can rent a high-volume, low-pressure (HVLP) paint sprayer from your local home improvement store for around $100 per day. Hold the sprayer about eight inches from the surface for best results. The paint is ejected into a mist, so cover everything else with a plastic tarp beforehand.

Use these tips, and you’ll get that designer look for a fraction of the price when you buy unfinished cheap kitchen cabinets.

You’ll need to remove your doors, fronts, and hardware before starting a finishing project. We recommend ordering ready-to-assemble cabinets over fully-assembled cabinets to achieve a thorough application. Visit our website to find out more.

Tagged with: , , , ,
Posted in RTA Kitchen Cabinets


Get Your Dream Kitchen Designed for FREE!

The staff at RTACabinetStore.com will provide you with a FREE, no obligation professional kitchen design consultation with one of our expertly trained designers (a $500 value).

Free Download

Design Ideas & Buyer's Guide

Free Kitchen Buyer's Guide

When you sign up, you'll also receive information about our free Kitchen Design Tool! It's the easiest way to design your dream kitchen.

I'm interested in cabinets as a…

Subscribe to RSS Feed

Online Kitchen Design Tool