How to Change Out Kitchen Cabinet Hardware: a DIY Project for the Do-It-Yourselfer

kitchen cabinet

Sprucing up your kitchen doesn’t have to cost you a fortune. You can easily level up your cabinets with decorative pieces such as cupboard knobs, drawer handles and other minor upgrades. Once you have identified what you would like to replace the existing hardware with, you can choose from a range of options. 

For instance, one of the most popular cupboard knobs is round-shaped ones. However, you can opt for a slightly less traditional choice, such as square-shaped knobs, to give your kitchen cupboards a more contemporary feel.

Go Shopping for New Cabinet Hardware 

First, you’ll need to purchase your new cabinet hardware. If you’re replacing existing hinges, measure the width between the hinge plates and the length of the hinge plate. Also, check to see if there are any notches or grooves cut into the hinge plate. This will help you determine what size hinges you need to purchase. 

kitchen cabinet knobs

To select other types of hardware, such as premium cupboard knobs or pulls, check the measurements that come with your existing hardware to ensure that they are compatible with the new knobs or pulls you’ve selected. When shopping for your replacement hardware, you can also bring along one of your existing knobs or pulls to compare them visually before buying.

Remove the Old Hardware

As with any do-it-yourself project, make sure that you work on one cabinet at a time. This way, you won’t get confused about where each piece of hardware goes. Unscrew and remove any screws or nails that hold the hardware in place. Depending on the type of cabinets you have, there may be different types of hardware bearing each piece in place. Make sure that all doors are closed before you begin this process, so they don’t fall or hit anything when they are removed. Remove the hinges first; these are usually what holds the door in place on the cabinet frame. Once these are removed, you can take down the doors to work on them separately.

Prepare the Work Area

You may want to move your kitchen table or island into another room to get it out of the way before you begin. If you don’t have any place to move these items, you’ll want to cover them with drop cloths before you start working. You will also want to keep your pets and children away from the work area while changing out the cabinet hardware. 

Clean The Doors And Cabinets Carefully

Clean the doors and cabinets carefully. Before measuring or removing existing hardware, give your kitchen cabinets a thorough cleaning. You’ll be surprised what a difference a good scrubbing makes, especially if they’ve been neglected over the years. This will give you a fresh start and make it easier for new hardware to adhere properly. Take your doors and cabinet drawers off their hinges or tracks, depending on what they have. Use a soft, non-abrasive cloth and soapy water. Do not use regular glass or window cleaners because they can damage the finish of the wood. After that, make sure they dry completely before putting the new hardware on them.

If the old hardware leaves holes behind, fill them with wood putty that matches your cabinets and allow them to dry before sanding. Be sure to match up all-new hardware before drilling any holes into your cabinets. 

Put Everything Back Together Again 

The first step to putting everything back together again is to reattach the doors and drawers. Start by screwing in the top hinge with each door, then work your way down to the bottom. Ensure that you attach the top hinges at a slightly higher level than the bottom hinges. This will help prevent gaps between the doors and frame when they are closed. 

Once you have all of your doors on, tackle the drawer fronts. Start by screwing in one side of a drawer front, then insert a flathead screwdriver into the inside of the drawer to hold it in place while you securely attach the other side of the drawer front. Once the drawer fronts are on, slide your drawers back into position — making sure not to tighten any screws until you’re sure everything is lined up correctly! 

Finally, if you’re lucky enough to have a self-closing or soft-closing hinge system installed on your cabinet doors and drawers, this is likely where they will be installed and adjusted.

To Sum Up

Remodelling cabinets is not that hard once you figure out how to do it and what tools you will need to do the job. Changing out cabinet hardware is a very economical way to give your kitchen a facelift without major renovations. The good news is that this project takes very little time and requires very few tools. So, if you’re on a renovation budget, picking up some new hardware might be just what you need to get that kitchen look you’ve always wanted.