Painting Kitchen Cabinets

Step 1: Remove cabinet doors, drawers, and hardware. Drop the hardware in a box or can so that nothing gets lost; you can clean and polish it while the cabinets are drying. Place the doors and drawers in a dust-free area where they can stay several days while they’re drying. Wash all surfaces with a strong detergent.

Step 2: Sand cabinet surfaces lightly with 100-grit sandpaper to dull the gloss and aid paint adhesion. Vacuum and wipe with a clean tack cloth (available at paint stores) to eliminate dust. Choose a water-based stain-resistant paint formulated for kitchens. It should be scrubable and contain a mildewcide against the high humidity of a kitchen.

Step 3: As a first coat, use a primer recommended for the type of paint you are using. Buy good-quality brushes to avoid streaks and errant bristles. When the primer is dry, lightly sand and wipe the cabinet surfaces again. Apply the first coat of finish paint, let it dry, sand lightly, and wipe again. A second finish coat should complete the job.

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