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How to Stop Kitchen Drawer From Rubbing Countertop

February 13th, 2010 Leave a comment Go to comments

How to adjust a cabinet drawer from scraping on the top is challenging. You can stop these from rubbing on the countertop by shimming the counter or adjusting the face. The degree of difficulty is going to depend upon your situation and carpentry skills.

The first thing you will need to determine is what exactly is causing the problem.

1)Was the kitchen cupboard installer careless when he was making the final adjustments?
2)Is the countertop sagging?
3)Has there been some sort of water damage that caused the top to swell?

Possible Tools Needed and Materials Needed

-Electric drill with various bits, including a #2 square drive if you have square head screws.
-Wood shims…these can be purchased from Home Depot
-Putty knife
-Razor knife
-Center supporting stile…This is a piece of wood to prop the cabinet up if it is sagging because of a very large span. This support should be finished to match the cupboard.
– Metal L-brackets for securing the new center support stile.

Shimming The Top
If the drawer will open, the chances are good that you won’t need to lift the top up very high to get a small piece of wood shim between the top of the cabinet and the bottom of the countertop. Remove the drawers near where the problem is occurring.

Look, from an upside down position, and see if there are screws holding the top in place. Remove these lock-down fasteners in the area you are working in. Lift the top and place the wood-shim in place. Put the drawers back in and test to see if you where able to fix the drawer from rubbing on the countertop. If this did not stop the problem, place a larger shim in place. Continue to do this until you have fixed the scrapping drawer front.

Adjusting Drawer Face to a Different Position
Examine the drawer that is rubbing to see if there’s enough room to adjust it downward. If not try to move the cabinet door down to allow room for you to adjust the decorative face of the drawer.

* Take the drawer out of the kitchen cupboard
* Mark the area (on the decorative front) where the drawer is attached to the decorative front with a pencil. This will serve as an alignment reference when you move the location of the face.
* Remove handle or knob
* Take all of the screws out

  • Tip: At this point it may be necessary for you to drill new pilot holes (through the drawer) for the screws to go through. You will not be able to use the old screw holes.

* Realign the drawer front into its new position.
* Secure the face to the drawer
* Put the handle or knob back on. You may need to drill through the old holeĀ  in order to get the fastening screw attached to the handle or knob.

Adding Center Cabinet Support
Usually these center supports are made to be no smaller than three inches in width. The larger you make this piece of wood the easier it will be to secure into place and the sturdier it will be. Attach an L-bracket to both ends of the center support. Slide it into place and fasten securely with screws. If there is still enough sagging in the cabinet to cause the drawer to scrape against the counter, add some wood shims to the center support. It’s usually best to place them at the top of the new center style support.

How you adjust your drawers so they won’t scrape against the kitchen countertop is going to be a matter of using common sense combined with moderate craftsmanship. By carefully analyzing what is causing the rubbing to occur, you can determine which of the above methods will stop it from scrapping. Sometimes just tapping on the top of the drawer, using the rubber end of the hammer, will adjust the decorative face downward enough to stop the scrapping.

For more tips check out this article that explains more on how to fix cabinet drawers.

Categories: Working With Drawers
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