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Upgrading Existing Cabinet Doors

There are many methods of how to upgrade cabinet doors. The style of the kitchen, bathroom or vanity door will determine the upgrading process. If you have a raised panel style, consider applying a glaze to add more detail. Formica kitchen Cabinets generally have flat fronts and look good when additional moldings are applied or glass frames are inserted.

Should you replace the old ones with a new style? Is it difficult to do this yourself? How much money does it cost to replace the existing kitchen faces? Can I just add something to the cupboard fronts to make them look better? All of these are great questions and with some research you can find the answers online, but in this article I will share practical and affordable methods of upgrading existing cabinet doors.

This is a very easy way to get a different look on your cabinet doors. For the best results, I highly recommend that you hire a professional to take care of this type of finish work.

Upgrading kitchen cabinet doors that are raised panel by adding a glazed detail is fairly easy. First, purchase some dark brown glaze, a foam applicator, wiping rags, and some clear satin spray-on lacquer. The spray can be bought in regular sized aerosol cans.

Place a small amount of the brown glaze on the lid of the paint can.
Dip the end of the foam brush in the brown and apply it to the detailed edges on the raised panel door.
Wipe the excess off with the rag.
Allow the glaze to dry according to the recommendations on the product can.
Spray the lacquer on allowing sufficient drying time between coats.

When glazing is done right, your doors will have a nice antique look to them. This method of applying a lacquer finish is to be used on wood cupboard doors only. Before you get carried away, make sure that you practice on the back of one of the kitchen or bathroom cabinet doors to ensure that the lacquer finish is compatible with the existing finish on the doors.

Cabinet Door Glass Additions

It’s possible to upgrade adding glass to kitchen cabinet doors. In this video by Megan Carter, she gives step-by-step information about the upgrading process.

Tools and materials needed:
Chop saw
Finish nails, hammer and nail set
Staple gun
Paint and primer
Jig saw
Quarter round

Determine what size the glass needs to be and order it. When the glass is ready, place it over the door where you want it to be. Mark the pattern and cut out the area with a jig saw leaving enough room for the glass to be inserted. Prime your molding wood strips. Cut strips of molding on forty five degree angles using the chop saw, staple or hand nail them into position on the front of the door. Place the glass in the door frame from the backside. Fit, cut and nail the quarter round molding pieces in place on the back of the door to hold the glass in place. The final steps are to fill all the nail holes and seams with Spackle or caulk. Then, paint the final color on the wood molding.

There are many creative ways of upgrading bathroom doors. Some women have used faux style painting to upgrade an old looking set of bathroom cabinet doors. Actually, one of the faux processes is to take a newer looking cabinet door and make it look distressed and old. There are many videos on Youtube that explain how to do this type of paint upgrade to existing cupoards.

We have an article that explains a low-budget process of remodeling cabinet doors. Making an upgrade to existing doors using this method just requires attaching painted or stained molding to flat kitchen or bathroom cupboard doors doors.

Whatever method you choose for remodeling your kitchen or bathroom cabinets, remember to allow sufficient time to complete the project in a professional manner. Professional cabinet makers are generally perfectionists. You should conduct your “do it yourself” upgrade to kitchen or bathroom cabinet doors as though you were a professional.

  1. Dan
    July 17th, 2010 at 07:30 | #1

    Thanks for sharing your discoveries. This has been helpful for me to get ideas for remodeling my old set of cupboards.

    I’m wondering if I can make a raised panel door into a glass framed door?

    Is this something that can be done or will I have to order new doors all together?

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