Giovanni Valle is a licensed architect and LEED-accredited professional and is certified by the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB). He is the author and managing editor of various digital publications, including BuilderSpace, Your Own Architect, and Interiors Place.
Painting is a great way to make your home unique and keep up with current design trends. Whether you’ve considered it or not, painting inside kitchen cabinets can be an option.
Painting inside kitchen cabinets doesn’t matter either way. The wood already has protection against oil vapors, so painting inside isn’t necessary. It may also be difficult, but doing so can add visual stimulation to a boring kitchen.
If you want to redo your kitchen, painting the cabinets is an easy option. But painting inside kitchen cabinets can be more complicated. Keep reading to learn why you should or shouldn’t paint inside kitchen cabinets.
Why You Should Paint Inside Kitchen Cabinets
Painting inside kitchen cabinets can be an easy way to spruce up your kitchen. You can add a pop of color or reduce any contrast between your cabinets and cabinet doors. If you want to paint inside kitchen cabinets, you can and have it be safe.
Here are a few reasons why you should paint inside your kitchen cabinets.
Match the Cabinet Doors
One good reason to paint your cabinets is if you’re also painting the cabinet doors. You can make the interior match the doors to have a more cohesive look in your kitchen. That can look more sophisticated, and you don’t have to worry about it looking odd when you open the cabinets.
Matching can also be useful if you have windows in your cabinet doors. You can see the inside color without even opening the cabinet, so you may not want to show off the wood color.
If you don’t like the idea of matching your cabinet doors and the inside, you can paint the inside with a different color. Sure, you could leave the wood inside, but that may not look good with whatever door color you use.
Consider using a complementary color or a different hue of the same color to contrast the cabinet doors. Then, you can still have a stylish kitchen, but you don’t have to use the same shade for all of your cabinets.
Because You Want To
Don’t forget that you can do whatever you want to with your kitchen. Assuming you own your home, you can make upgrades and changes to suit your style. If you’re tired of how your cabinets currently look, consider painting inside them.
While it can be complicated, it can be a budget-friendly upgrade. You don’t need to get new cabinets, and you can complete the painting in a few days. Then, you can enjoy your “new” kitchen without replacing everything in it.
Why You Shouldn’t Paint Inside Kitchen Cabinets
Painting inside your kitchen cabinets can be a good choice but not everyone will want to do so. If you aren’t sure if it’s the right option, consider why you may want to leave your cabinets as they are.
Here are a few reasons why you shouldn’t paint inside your kitchen cabinets:
Difficult to Do
Consider the shape and size of your cabinets. If they’re small and long or the cabinet is short, it can be hard to reach everywhere. You’ll need to get the paint into all of the corners, and you’ll need to paint the top, bottom, and sides of the cabinets.
Painting inside your cabinets can be tricky, and you may not get a thick enough coat in all places. If you don’t have much experience painting, you may want to hold off on painting inside your kitchen cabinets.
Chance of Paint Chips
As the paint dries and starts to chip, it can fall on or into your kitchen supplies. The paint can get into your bowls or on your silverware, and it may even stain your belongings. If you don’t paint the inside of your cabinets correctly, you’ll have a higher chance of these issues happening.
You may need to add a sealant to lock in the paint so that it doesn’t chip. But that can take even more time and keep you from being able to use your kitchen for longer. And if you don’t use enough sealant, that may not solve the problem.
Uses More Paint
If you want to paint the inside of your kitchen cabinets, you’ll have to use more paint than if you just did the cabinet doors. Not only will you need more paint now, but you’ll need more paint whenever you decide to redo your cabinets in the future.
You may also want to have more paint on hand to fix any places where the paint chips. Painting the inside of your cabinets could increase the cost of redoing your kitchen, and it might not be worth it unless your cabinets have windows where you can see inside all the time.
How to Paint Inside Kitchen Cabinets
If you decide to paint inside your kitchen cabinets, you need to take the right steps before and during the process. It can take a lot of time to prepare your cabinets for painting, and it can take your kitchen out of commission for a few days.
Here are the steps you can follow to make the most of your time painting inside your cabinets:
- Clear out your kitchen. First, you need to take out everything that you store in the cabinets you’ll be painting. Move the items to a different room so that you can’t get paint on them by accident. You should also clear out anything in nearby cabinets to keep those items safe. And open any windows in your kitchen so that the paint smell doesn’t congregate in the room.
- Cover the counters. Use something, like a plastic sheet or tarp, to protect your counters from any paint spills. Cover everything from your stove to your sink to the backsplash tile. That way, you don’t have to worry about cleaning paint off of the things you can’t remove from your kitchen.
- Remove the doors. Removing the doors will make it easier to paint them, and you can move them outside for more ventilation while you paint. Taking the door off the hinge will also make it easier to get inside the cabinet since you won’t have a door blocking you or your arm.
- Clean everything. Next, take the time to clean inside each of the cabinets you’ll be painting. Make sure you get rid of any signs of dust, and you can use this opportunity to ensure the cabinets are empty. You never know when you might miss something small at the back of a cabinet up top.
- Use primer. Look for a primer that works well with your cabinet wood. Tight grained woods, like cherry and maple, can handle oil-based primers. However, you should look for water-based primers if your cabinets are oak, ash, or another open-grained wood. Once you select your primer, paint a coat of it over the entire inside of your cabinets.
- Sand and caulk. Once the primer is dry, use 220-grit sandpaper to sand down the smooth parts of the cabinets. This will help smooth out the cabinets even more and make them easier to paint. If you have any cracks, you should also use a latex caulk to fill those in. Let those areas dry before sanding them down.
- Paint the cabinets. Finally, it’s time to paint the inside of your cabinets. Make sure you get in all of the corners, along the back and sides, and that you cover the tops and bottoms with paint. Take your paint and brush to the room with the cabinet doors and paint those. Consider adding a sealant to lock in the paint, then let everything dry before you put the cabinet doors back on.
Painting inside cabinets can be tricky and time-consuming. Consider how you want your cabinets to look and if it’s worth that time and effort. Then, you can make your kitchen look how you want it so that it fits your style.
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