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Editorial


Front Page - Friday, May 22, 2015

Tips and tricks on painting kitchen cabinets


Do It Yourself



April Sherrill

Painting kitchen cabinets is no small undertaking; however, in a time when people are venturing out to accomplish their own renovation projects there are many ways to keep things running smoothly. This particular kitchen DIY is a project that you can do without the professionalss, but it does require patience, and you will have to be prepared to deal with a bit of chaos and disorder.

Painting the cabinetry will revitalize the look of a kitchen immensely, and make you fall in love with it all over again, so I have sorted through many websites to figure out the best tips and tricks to make the work as painless as possible. 

Choosing the right paint makes all the difference in how this project will turn out. Everyday wall paint is not conducive for cabinetry surfaces. Wall paint is known to chip, and it will not stand up to time and repeated cleanings. The proper paint does cost more initially, but choosing an alkyd enamel like Benjamin Moore ADVANCE or Sherwin-Williams Pro Classic will benefit you in the long run. Also, the formulas of these paints are self-leveling which will leave a smooth surface.

Labeling might be the second most important step in the process. Make sure to take the time to mark all the hardware and cabinet doors. There are many different ways to go about this step, so chose whatever works for you, and be sure not to skip it. There is nothing worse than finishing all that hard work and having to spend the time and frustration of trying to figure out what fits where.

Consider spending the money on buying or renting a paint sprayer. Using a paint sprayer to spray the cabinet door fronts will leave you with a flawless finish. A paint sprayer can be purchased for around $50 dollars, and trust me, it’s worth every penny.

Use an electric sander and buy plenty of sandpaper. Even if the surface material is refinished, sanding is essential in creating the best surface for primer and paint to adhere. The more you sand the better the finished product will be. 

Sanding does not stop after the initially sanding; the cabinetry needs to be sanded in between primed coats, and coats of paint as well. Use 80 grit to 120 grit sandpaper to prep the base cabinetry, and 180 grit sandpaper in between coats of primer and paint, and you will ensure a flawless finish.

Using tack cloths in between sanding will guarantee that you are lifting all the dust off the cabinetry. Making sure all the dust is off is very important when painting and priming multiple coats.

Many pro painters recommend using Kilz oil-based primer, not the water-based. The oil-based formula will help lessen the likelihood of discoloration. The oil-based also helps create the best possible surface for the primer and paint to adhere. 

If you are painting with a dark color, having the primer tinted the color of the paint will lessen the chance of needing multiple coats. This is especially important if you are doing a duo tone. If you are doing a duo tone, first use the un-tinted primer to prime the lighter cabinets and then take the rest of the can back and have it tinted. This will save you from having to repurchase another can of primer. 

Use plastic bags or plastic wrap to seal the brushes and rollers overnight. If you are going to be doing this project over the course of a couple of consecutive days, skip cleaning the brushes; just wrap them up, and store them in the refrigerator. 

Choose the right paint rollers: one type for primer, another type for paint. Browse the painting aisle at your hardware store to help you determine which rollers are ideal. Look for words like “smooth cabinet finish” and “mirror finish.” High-density foam rollers are the best for application of the oil-based primer. For rolling the paint, the Purdy 1/4” low-nap “mirror finish” roller specified for use with clear sealers and enamels is great. I found that the low-nap rollers actually perform better after they sit, used, wrapped in plastic overnight. The nap lessens, it gets “broken in,” and the finish is spectacular, which means you can get a little more use out of each roller before tossing it.

Lastly, avoid applying heavy coats. Drips happen and enamel paint begins curing immediately, which might leave visible drip marks that will have to be sanded and re-painted. It is always best to stick to the mantra, “less is more!” 

April Sherrill is a staff writer for the Hamilton County Herald. Contact her at april@dailydata.com. 

Painting kitchen cabinets is no small undertaking; however, in a time when people are venturing out to accomplish their own renovation projects there are many ways to keep things running smoothly. This particular kitchen DIY is a project that you can do without the professionalss, but it does require patience, and you will have to be prepared to deal with a bit of chaos and disorder.

Painting the cabinetry will revitalize the look of a kitchen immensely, and make you fall in love with it all over again, so I have sorted through many websites to figure out the best tips and tricks to make the work as painless as possible. 

Choosing the right paint makes all the difference in how this project will turn out. Everyday wall paint is not conducive for cabinetry surfaces. Wall paint is known to chip, and it will not stand up to time and repeated cleanings. The proper paint does cost more initially, but choosing an alkyd enamel like Benjamin Moore ADVANCE or Sherwin-Williams Pro Classic will benefit you in the long run. Also, the formulas of these paints are self-leveling which will leave a smooth surface.

Labeling might be the second most important step in the process. Make sure to take the time to mark all the hardware and cabinet doors. There are many different ways to go about this step, so chose whatever works for you, and be sure not to skip it. There is nothing worse than finishing all that hard work and having to spend the time and frustration of trying to figure out what fits where.

Consider spending the money on buying or renting a paint sprayer. Using a paint sprayer to spray the cabinet door fronts will leave you with a flawless finish. A paint sprayer can be purchased for around $50 dollars, and trust me, it’s worth every penny.

Use an electric sander and buy plenty of sandpaper. Even if the surface material is refinished, sanding is essential in creating the best surface for primer and paint to adhere. The more you sand the better the finished product will be. 

Sanding does not stop after the initially sanding; the cabinetry needs to be sanded in between primed coats, and coats of paint as well. Use 80 grit to 120 grit sandpaper to prep the base cabinetry, and 180 grit sandpaper in between coats of primer and paint, and you will ensure a flawless finish.

Using tack cloths in between sanding will guarantee that you are lifting all the dust off the cabinetry. Making sure all the dust is off is very important when painting and priming multiple coats.

Many pro painters recommend using Kilz oil-based primer, not the water-based. The oil-based formula will help lessen the likelihood of discoloration. The oil-based also helps create the best possible surface for the primer and paint to adhere. 

If you are painting with a dark color, having the primer tinted the color of the paint will lessen the chance of needing multiple coats. This is especially important if you are doing a duo tone. If you are doing a duo tone, first use the un-tinted primer to prime the lighter cabinets and then take the rest of the can back and have it tinted. This will save you from having to repurchase another can of primer. 

Use plastic bags or plastic wrap to seal the brushes and rollers overnight. If you are going to be doing this project over the course of a couple of consecutive days, skip cleaning the brushes; just wrap them up, and store them in the refrigerator. 

Choose the right paint rollers: one type for primer, another type for paint. Browse the painting aisle at your hardware store to help you determine which rollers are ideal. Look for words like “smooth cabinet finish” and “mirror finish.” High-density foam rollers are the best for application of the oil-based primer. For rolling the paint, the Purdy 1/4” low-nap “mirror finish” roller specified for use with clear sealers and enamels is great. I found that the low-nap rollers actually perform better after they sit, used, wrapped in plastic overnight. The nap lessens, it gets “broken in,” and the finish is spectacular, which means you can get a little more use out of each roller before tossing it.

Lastly, avoid applying heavy coats. Drips happen and enamel paint begins curing immediately, which might leave visible drip marks that will have to be sanded and re-painted. It is always best to stick to the mantra, “less is more!” 

April Sherrill is a staff writer for the Hamilton County Herald. Contact her at april@dailydata.com.   v