Spray Painting Kitchen Cabinets

Learn how to spray paint kitchen cabinets.
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spray-painting-kitchen-cabinets_4x3

The lackluster kitchen of a new construction home is reinvented as a high-design masterpiece, thanks to a mix of high and low remodeling ideas.

Photo by: Brian Patrick Flynn

Brian Patrick Flynn

If your kitchen cabinets need a major facelift, but you're unable to replace them, don't fret. Spray painting your kitchen cabinets will help you freshen them up with a new color.

How to Update Your Kitchen Without Breaking the Bank

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Don't Desert Your Island

If you love your kitchen cabinets, but want to add some interest to the space for very little money and time, consider changing the color of your island. This has been a popular design element for years and is showing no signs of changing anytime soon. Paint it, stain it a darker color or clad it in beadboard. You could even put corbels under the breakfast bar for added dimension and inexpensive customization.

Are You Both Worn Out?

These kitchen cabinets are hopefully in worse shape than yours, but they're not that uncommon. If you like the style of your existing cabinets, they're still functioning well or new ones aren't in the budget right now, paint is your friend here. Choose a color that complements the other elements in the room and get ready to go from "ow" to "wow!" Check out the next picture to see just how amazing this low-cost solution can look.

Acquaint Yourself With Paint

A fresh kitchen is just a few days' elbow grease away. Prep work and light, even coats are the keys to a successful paint job. Take the time to sand the surfaces until smooth, caulk as needed and try using pieces of a brown paper bag to "sand" between coats. It smooths and knocks down the high spots without dulling/removing as much paint as sandpaper so you don't have to be quite so careful.

Ready For a Change

This kitchen could be Anywhere, USA, and might remind you of yours. Let's say you have a bigger budget and it's time for some changes, but new cabinets aren't one of them. Repurposing them by changing their color and focusing on other areas that'll give you a big bang for your buck is a smart way to go. Look to the following picture for inspiration.

More Bang For the Buck

This kitchen's renewed darker cabinets, new backsplash and stainless steel appliances all combine to make it into a welcoming space with minimal hassle and mess. Keeping the same layout, cabinets and flooring made it possible to put the dollars into the higher-end appliances people expect these days and to add texture with the tile backsplash — all ideas you can consider if your kitchen's not to your taste.

Not-So-Bright White

This kitchen's beige/whitewashed cabinet color makes the white countertops and walls look dull. That isn't what anyone wants in a space that should be clean and fresh for cooking and eating. If you're ready for a change and crave color, check out the next picture to see how adding a new hue to just the cabinets transformed this kitchen.

For Those Who Crave Color

New molding along the top of the stock cabinets and N-HANCE® wood renewal in blue make the entire kitchen look unique, bright and white, even though the countertops and walls didn't change. When you're ready to update your kitchen cabinets, consider all your color options and don't be afraid to make a bold statement.

For an extra smooth and professional-looking finish, many paint experts recommend spray painting kitchen cabinets. This method can be easier than working with a paintbrush and roller, but it takes some time and practice to really get the hang of it. Spray painting kitchen cabinets is also a good way to go if your cabinets have raised panels and lots of areas that might be hard to paint with a paintbrush or roller.

If you've decided to spray paint your kitchen cabinets, you'll want to buy a special sprayer to make it easier. If you try to do this job with basic cans of spray paint, your pointer finger will be sore in no time. Talk to the paint experts at your local hardware store about HVLP (high volume, low pressure) sprayers, which will give you much more control over the spray. This type of sprayer has a dial that allows you to use a targeted spray for nooks and crannies or a broader spray when you're covering the cabinets. HVLP sprayers are on the expensive side, so look for one that can hook up to an air compressor.

When you're ready to get started, remove all of your cabinet doors and drawers, making sure to label the inside of each one so you know exactly where they go when it's time to reinstall them. Remove the hinges and hardware, then put them in plastic baggies, hanging each one in the appropriate cabinet so you can easily reinstall them as well.

Before starting to spray paint, clear off your counters, empty your cabinets and tape off everything, including the floor and some of the ceiling. It's also important to seal off any open areas in your kitchen to prevent the spray paint from floating to other parts of your house.

To spray paint your cabinet doors and drawers, you'll want to set up a work area, preferably outside or in a basement or garage. Whichever work area you choose, make sure it's well ventilated. Set up a worktable in your space that you can put each cabinet door on so you can work around it easily. It's also important to give your cabinets and drawers a light sanding and a good scrub to remove any grease or residue.

When you're ready to start spray painting, it's important to familiarize yourself with the spray paint gun and understand all of its settings. You'll also want to prime everything to ensure your paint will stick.
Once the primer has dried, you can spray on two coats of paint, but make sure to wait for the paint to dry in between each coat.

While the doors and drawers are drying, you can spray paint the frames. Make sure to sand and clean the frames before you begin spray painting them as well, and be patient in between each coat. Once your cabinets, drawers and frames are completely dry, you can reassemble everything.

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