How To Take Care of Your Cabinets

Cabinets are an expensive investment, so we understand wanting to make yours last as long as possible.

The best way to care for your kitchen or bathroom cabinets is to:

  • Clean cabinets regularly
  • Avoid damaging elements (heat, water, harsh cleaning solvents, etc.)
  • Repair nicks and scratches ASAP
  • Use shelf liners

We’ll walk you through each tip.

Is it time to refresh your cabinets? Contact us online or call 480-641-9611. One of our cabinet experts will come to your home for a same-day, no-obligation quote to refinish or reface your kitchen or bathroom cabinets.

Clean Cabinets Regularly

Clean cabinets as soon as you notice a spill or stain to help your finish last.

A good rule of thumb is to clean cabinets:

  • When you notice a spill or stain. Food, beauty products, and liquids can damage a cabinet’s finish. Clean cabinets as soon as you notice a spill or stain to help your finish last.
  • Every week. Spot-cleaning cabinets once a week or every few days helps prevent food, grease, and other substances from building up on your cabinets—making your seasonal deep cleanings a bit easier. Visit our blog for tips on cleaning grease off kitchen cabinets.
  • Every season. You should deep clean all of your cabinets every 3–4 months. That means removing everything inside the cabinets to clean any built-up dust, grease, and grime.

When cleaning cabinets, make sure to avoid using anything that can damage the finish.

Avoid Damaging Elements

Cabinets are designed to stand up to a lot, but over time, exposure to certain elements can ruin your cabinets faster than normal.

Try to avoid exposing your cabinets to:

  • Excessive moisture. Good cabinets can withstand some moisture, but a lot of moisture over time damages the finish and eventually the base material beneath it. Make sure to turn on the vent if your kitchen or bathroom is going to get a lot of moisture. If you notice liquids on cabinets, dry them with a soft cloth as soon as you can.
  • Heat. Don’t put small heat-generating appliances (like toasters or toaster ovens) inside cabinets. It might save you space, but the frequent contact with heat makes the base material expand and contract, which can make the finish inside the cabinets bubble and peel.
  • Direct sunlight. While a lot of natural light might make your kitchen look great, years of direct sunlight on cabinets can fade the finish. Closing window coverings or applying a UV-blocking window film will help your finish look great for as long as possible.
  • Harsh cleaning solutions. Use only gentle, non-acidic solutions to clean your cabinets. Solutions like bleach, ammonia, strong detergents, and cleaning solvents, and nail polish remover will strip the cabinet finish.
  • Stiff brushes or cleaning pads. Use soft brushes and non-abrasive pads to remove stubborn stains from your cabinets. Stiff plastic brushes, abrasive scouring pads, and steel wool can create nicks and scratches in the finish.

Repair Nicks and Scratches

The finish on your cabinet boxes, doors, and drawer fronts is designed to protect the base material. If you notice a damaged spot on your finish, we recommend getting it refinished as soon as you can.

Nicks and scratches expose the base material, which:

  • Allows water to get beneath the finish. This can cause water-damaged cabinets, which are often too structurally damaged to salvage and will need to be replaced.
  • Weakens the finish. If one spot of the finish is weakened, that spot will be more susceptible to damage than areas of finish that aren’t damaged.

To help prevent nicks and scratches inside your cabinets, use shelf liners.

Use Shelf Liners

Lining your cabinet shelves and drawers will protect the insides of your cabinets from damage against dinnerware and cookware, as well as storage bins and baskets.

You can choose from several different shelf liner materials:

  • Rubber: The most affordable liner, rubber provides a non-slip surface but also contains sulfur (a corrosive element), which means it’s not a good choice for silverware.
  • Fabric: Felt resists tarnish, making it a great choice for silver. Canvas liners won’t provide as much cushion as felt, but also offer a wider variety of design options if you’re looking to get creative in your cabinets.
  • Plastic: Plastic offers a wide variety of options, from hard, clear plastic sheets to thick vinyl with foam backing. Plus, it holds up against moisture, making it a good choice for bathroom cabinets.
  • Cork: Cork provides a cushion for glassware and fragile dinnerware, while also repelling mold and mildew.
  • Cedar: Cedar has natural insect-repelling properties, which makes it a great liner for cabinets housing linens, foods, and spices.

Another thing you’ll want to consider is whether you want:

  • Adhesive shelf liners: Have a sticky backing so the liner doesn’t shift on the shelf or in the drawer. Adhesive shelf liners are usually more affordable, but can also be difficult to remove if you ever want to change them out.
  • Non-adhesive shelf liners: Don’t have a sticky backing and just sit on the shelf or in the drawer.

Want to Refresh Your Cabinets? Call Cabinet Coatings Today.

Schedule an appointment online or call us at 480-641-9611. We’ll talk with you about the updates you want to make, then give you a free in-home or virtual consultation that same day. Our finishing pros will help you refresh your bathroom or kitchen cabinets, and can give you the best tips for making them last as long as possible.

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Chuck Derouen

For 20 plus years chuck has been helping homeowners make decisions on how to bring new life into their kitchens. Most homeowners know what they want but don’t know how to communicate it. When chuck does the in-home consultation he draws from the client and uses his expertise to help them bring their imagination to life (achieve the look they imagine.) Chuck dubs himself a “professional mind maker upper.”

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