Sometimes, our customers think that cabinet refacing and cabinet resurfacing are different. In fact, they are both industry terms, used interchangeably, describing the same process. Cabinet refacing/resurfacing is an affordable, efficient and eco-friendly way to update the look of existing cabinets, without a full replacement.
Both are, however, completely different from cabinet refinishing or repainting as they are more permanent cabinet solutions.
Cabinet Refacing (and/or resurfacing) Explained
Cabinet refacing—and resurfacing—uses the basis of your existing cabinet boxes, and changes everything about their exteriors. When the job is done by skilled professionals, the result is cabinets that look brand new and are completely updated. Ultimately, homeowners opting to reface their cabinets enjoy a custom cabinet look at a fraction of the price.
For a full, detailed description of the cabinet refacing process, visit our Cabinet Refacing page. Ultimately, we:
- Remove your existing doors and replace them with new ones
- Resurface the face of the cabinetry framework with matching veneers
- Reinforce the existing cabinet box infrastructure as needed
- Replace old hinges and hardware with your updated choice
- Re-envision cabinet interiors, adjusting shelving and/or adding customized storage solutions as requested.
The condition of your cabinets, as well as your ultimate kitchen design goals, determine whether or not refacing is an option for you. Read, 5 Ways to Tell if Your Cabinets Need to Be Replaced Instead of Refaced, or watch this quick 3 minute video about what makes a good candidate for cabinet refacing:
In the case you want to add a kitchen island or change a portion of your kitchen layout, you will still save money and remodeling time by refacing the cabinets you're keeping, and only installing custom-versions for new cabinet additions. Another bonus to refacing or resurfacing your cabinets is that you can add cabinet space, something you can't do via refinishing (but more on that later).
Interested in seeing how "custom" refaced cabinets can be? Visit our Kitchen Magic Gallery, and know the large majority of the cabinets shown there are refaced—rather than replaced.
Other posts worth viewing to see examples of high-end cabinet resurfacing include, 8 Amazing Refacing Transformations [Before & After Photos] and 7 Maintenance-Free Kitchens that Look Just Like Wood.
Refacing & Resurfacing Differ from Refinishing
While it's true that cabinet refacing/resurfacing are the same thing, they are entirely different than refinishing.
In the case of refinishing (or repainting), you keep the same door and drawer styles, changing only their exterior finish or color. This could mean migrating from white cabinetry to cabinets with a solid paint color; it may mean stripping your cabinets of their solid paint color in order to restore their original hardwood grain with nice finish and seal—as shown below. Either way, the door style remains the same, which can be a problem if you're interested in a complete kitchen design update.
As with resurfacing, refinishing provides the ability to change out the hinges, update the hardware, etc. However, the cabinet refinishing or repainting process is laborious (to say the least) so we highly recommend reading, The Pros & Cons of DIY Cabinet Painting. When all is said and done, most homeowners find that cabinet refacing (or resurfacing if you prefer) is the way to go.
The time and energy required to refinish cabinets, combined with the difficulty in achieving professional results, means you'll probably save time, money and energy by going the refacing route. The before and after photos below show an example of refaced cabinets—just imagine the possibilities for your kitchen!
Interested in learning more about cabinet refacing (our preferred terminology)? Contact the team here at Kitchen Magic and schedule a free in-home estimate. We've resurfaced cabinets in hundreds of kitchens around PA, the surrounding mid-Atlantic and New England states.