Repainting kitchen cabinetry can be a bit challenging. But done right, you can transform dull and dingy kitchen cabinets into good-as-new.

Kitchen cabinets tend to take a lot of abuse. The combo of heavy use and frequent opportunities for stains and discolorations can rapidly transform sparkling-new into dull and dingy. And that makes the kitchen cabinets in most homes leading candidates for a repainting project.

The same hard use can make a kitchen cabinet repainting project a bit more challenging than most. But if the project is done properly, there’s no reason that your aged, hard-living cabinets can’t be restored to their youthful splendor.


  • 1

    Preparation is Key

    Proper preparation is a key to success for all painting projects. But because of the contaminants of grease and grime that constantly assault kitchen cabinets, proper preparation is especially critical before beginning painting.

    Start by removing all of the doors and drawers. You might want to devise a location code to inconspicuously mark or tape onto each piece as it’s removed, just to ease the job of reinstalling everything. You should also remove all hardware attached to the cabinets, such as knobs, handles and hinges.

  • 2


    Your objective will be to remove all traces of contaminants that might hinder the adhesion of the new paint, including dirt, grease, oil, and wax. You might need to resort to some fairly heavy-duty chemical cleaners, wax removers, or degreasers to get the job done properly.

    Once the cabinets have been thoroughly cleaned, lightly sand the surface, and then wipe clean to remove sanding residues and any dust that may have accumulated.

  • 3

    Paint - Traditional method

    With the cabinet surfaces cleaned and prepped, apply one coat of a high-quality, oil-based enamel undercoater primer.

    Allow the primer coat to dry overnight, and then apply two coats of either an alkyd enamel or a waterborne alkyd paint. Allow the first coat to dry overnight before applying the second coat.

  • 4

    Paint - Cabinet Coat by Insl-x

    Cabinet Coat is a urethane-reinforced acrylic paint specially formulated for use on kitchen and bathroom cabinetry. It’s designed to better withstand the hard use and exposure to dirt and grime that both kitchen and bathroom cabinets are regularly exposed to.

    Apply Cabinet Coat using either a high-quality synthetic bristle brush or a high-quality roller with a short-nap cover (less than 1/2 inch). Cabinet Coat can also be thinned with water (up to 8 ounces per gallon) and applied with a sprayer.

    No primer is needed, but two coats of Cabinet Coat should be applied. If you’re painting bare wood surfaces, wait 16 hours between coats. Otherwise, allow 6 hours between coats.

Your Shopping List

  • Norton 180 grit sandpaper
  • Reeves Tack rags for cleaning
  • Benjamin Moore Advance Primer 790
  • Benjamin Moore Advance Satin 792
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