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Frank O
Kitchen cabinet paint
Frank O

We've had some traditional cabinets fabricated for the kitchen of our 100-year-old California bungalow, and plan to paint them white. Three questions:

1) I've heard that cabinetry is usually done in oil-based primer and paint since it is more highly trafficked, as opposed to walls or ceilings, which are typically done in water-based primer and paint. True?

2) Would semi-gloss be the logical finish?

3) Are interiors of cabinets (walls, shelves, insides of doors, etc) usually painted as well?

dj1
Re: Kitchen cabinet paint
dj1

1. The type of primer depends on the type of paint you choose, so read the paint manufacturer's recommendations carefully.

2. For paint, go with gloss.

3. For a finish look paint inside the cabinets too. Sorry about it.

Frank O
Re: Kitchen cabinet paint
Frank O

Thanks. Re question #1, that wasn't quite what I was asking. Let me rephrase:

Would it be normal to paint kitchen cabinets in oil-based paint, or in water-based paint?

I got the impression that the answer might be "oil-based," because it holds up better against the amount of contact that cabinets receive compared to, say, walls or ceilings.

A. Spruce
Re: Kitchen cabinet paint
A. Spruce

On old cabinetry, wash down with TSP, then prime with Kilz or BIN primer. On new cabinetry made to match old/existing, prime with Bull's Eye 123. Top coat either primer choice with an alkyd paint. Alkyds mimic oil base in workability and finish. Go with a gloss or semi-gloss finish for best protection for the environment.

Read the labels of ALL the products you use for preparation, application, and clean up, as each one has their own specific needs and requirements. Good luck and report back with your progress.

ordjen
Re: Kitchen cabinet paint
ordjen

There are now water based alkyd enamels which give the low odor, quick drying, water clean up attributes of a water based product with the hard finish , durable, good leveling attributes of an oil based alkyd. Sherwin-Williams, Ben. Moore and Behr all make versions of the WB alkyd.

WB alkyds are not self-priming over bare wood, but can be applied directly to sound existing finishes. They exhibit excellent adhesion.

Over bare wood, I would favor an oil based primer. It does not raise the grain of the bare wood, as do water based products, and can be easily sanded to present an excellent base for the finish coat. Bare wood usually requres a primer and two finsih coats to give a really good finish. An oil primer is compatible with either a water based or oil based finish coat.

Frank O
Re: Kitchen cabinet paint
Frank O

Thanks, very helpful info.

My wife, who is an artist, says that in her world, water-based over oil-based can be a problem (partly due to drying time, partly something to do with how it adheres). I gather this isn't an issue in the housepaint realm?

Also, on gloss vs semi-gloss: I see one message above that recommends gloss, one that suggests either gloss or semi-gloss. What would be the more traditional finish in a kitchen 70 or 100 years ago?

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