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  • Writer's pictureChris Arnett

Understanding the Different Types of Kitchen Cabinet Updates: Refinishing, Painting, and Refacing

When it comes to updating your kitchen cabinets, there are several methods you can consider: refinishing, painting, and refacing. Each approach has its benefits and drawbacks, and the best choice for your kitchen will depend on your specific needs, preferences, and budget. In this blog post, we'll take a closer look at each of these methods to help you determine which option is the best fit for your kitchen cabinet update.

Cabinet Refinishing

Cabinet refinishing is the process of restoring the existing finish or applying a new one to your cabinets. This option is ideal for homeowners who want to preserve the natural wood grain or achieve a factory-like finish while changing the color of their cabinets. The primary benefits of cabinet refinishing include a smooth, uniform finish and a durable coating that allows for moderate to heavy use and easy cleaning.


  • Retains the natural wood grain or achieves a factory-like finish

  • Durable and easy to clean

  • Generally more affordable than refacing


  • May not be suitable for cabinets with significant damage or wear

  • May not work if you are not happy with the design of the cabinet doors

  • Limited to the existing cabinet design and layout

Cabinet Painting

Cabinet painting is a popular option for homeowners looking to change the color of their cabinets without investing in a full-scale remodel. This method involves thorough preparation, including sanding and priming, before applying a high-quality paint designed for cabinets. While cabinet painting can result in a much needed color update, the finish may not be as smooth or durable as refinishing or refacing.


  • Cost-effective way to update the look of your cabinets

  • Faster process compared to refinishing or refacing


  • May not be as durable as refinishing or refacing

  • Finish may show brush strokes or imperfections and "orange peel" texture on the frames and cabinet doors and drawer fronts

Cabinet Refacing

Cabinet refacing involves replacing the cabinet doors and drawer fronts, while applying a wood veneer to the existing cabinet frames to match the new doors. Or, in our case, refinishing the existing frames (as long as they are wood and not another materials like vinyl or MDF board) This method allows homeowners to update the appearance of their cabinets without tearing out and replacing the entire cabinet structure. Refacing is an excellent option for those who are happy with their current cabinet layout but want a new look.


  • Completely transforms the appearance of your cabinets

  • Less expensive and disruptive than a full kitchen remodel

  • Can add custom features, such as crown molding or light railings


  • Typically more expensive than refinishing or painting

  • Requires professional installation for best results

When deciding on the best method for updating your kitchen cabinets, consider your budget, the current condition of your cabinets, and your desired outcome. If you're looking for a cost-effective way to change the color of your cabinets, painting may be the right choice. However, if you prefer a more durable and factory-like finish, refinishing is worth considering. Finally, if you want a completely new look without the cost of a full kitchen remodel, cabinet refacing may be the ideal solution.

No matter which method you choose, it's essential to work with an experienced professional who can guide you through the process and help you achieve the kitchen of your dreams.

If you live in the central Ohio area, contact us today for a free consultation to determine what method is best for your kitchen and budget

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