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Painting Kitchen Cabinets

I am planning on painting my 20 year old stained oak kitchen cabinets. I plan on removing the hardware, lightly sanding them to rough up the surface and then applying a primer and two finish coats. I will be using floetrol in both the primer and finsih coats. I plan on using Behr premuim paint. What steps am missing if any or what pitfalls can I expect?

Re: Painting Kitchen Cabinets

The only problem with your gameplan is that you're intending to use an ordinary latex paint.

Kitchen cabinet doors take a fair bit of wear and tear since people will forget the door has knobs or handles and pull the door open and push it closed with their bare hands. It's that handling that causes discolouration on wood veneered doors, and you really should be using a paint that dries to a harder and stronger film to stand up better to that wear and tear. If you use an ordinary latex paint like Behr, it'll dry to a soft film, and dirt on hands is gonna soon cause beige areas on the doors where dirt from the hands has become embedded in the soft latex paint.

I would use Penetrol and an interior alkyd primer and an interior alkyd top coat.

And, if you're planning on painting the interior shelves, then I would use a polyurethane fortified alkyd paint on those shelves. In my case, I have 21 apartments in my building, and the insides of all of the kitchen cupboards and cabinets are painted with Benjamin Moore "Melamine" in the 303-90 white tint base. I have been perfectly happy with the way this paint has stood up to the wear and tear of tenants. I can remove stains from it with bleach, or if push comes to shove, remove the top layer of Melamine paint by cleaning it with acetone. This "Melamine" paint is an alkyd paint to which alkyd based polyurethane resins have been added to make it dry harder and stronger film than a conventional interior alkyd paint. It's like mixing an oil based wall paint with a polyurethane hardwood floor finish to get a harder and stronger paint.

In both cases, if you are concerned about the alkyd paint yellowing with time, then there is a water based paint that I'd highly recommend. It's made by the Comex company of Mexico and sold under their various subsidiaries companies in Canada and the USA. In central and western Canada, it's sold as "Envirogard" by General Paint:


Envirogard is a "waterborne acrylic enamel", that uses a "modified" acrylic resin, but I have no idea how that acrylic resin has been modified. It's certainly not a conventional latex paint since it's the only water based product I know of that dries as hard as an oil based paint and sticks exceedingly well to smooth surfaces like high gloss oil based paints, plastic laminate and galvanized metal. I wish I knew what was in the stuff, but I don't. Envirogard washes up with water just like Behr Premium paint, but that's about where the similarity ends. It's about the only water based paint I'd use in place of an oil based paint.

If any of these paint company names is familiar to you, you can buy Envirogard (perhaps being sold under a different name) from them:

Colorwheel Paints
Frazee Paints
Parker Paints
Kwal Paints


Re: Painting Kitchen Cabinets

the first step you're doing wrong is buying box store paint when i do kit cabinets i use b/moore direct to wood paint it's a waterborne paint apply 2coats dried in a hour second for a lasting finish i use parks poly also a waterborne product you do have to buy it at h/d have done hundreds of cabinets this way the b/moore dealer i use in the metro det area has a special cabinet paint that also works great but i don't know if they have it at all stores

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