Your kitchen sees a lot of action. It doesn’t take long for wood cabinets to show signs of wear and tear. You may soon decide that certain changes or upgrades are required. And sometimes the simplest solutions are the best—and the most cost-effective.


If your stained or painted kitchen cabinets need a revamp, you can give them a crisp, new look without paying too much for tools and materials.


Simple Ways You Can Restore Your Cabinet Finishes


Cabinet Refinishing with Stain


If your stained cabinets are still functional but have worn-out surfaces, or if you want a different aesthetic, a fresh stain is simple to apply.


If you like a darker color, start by cleaning your cabinets with a mixture of TSP and water. After they’ve dried, lightly sand the cabinets and dust with a tack cloth. After that, apply a polyurethane varnish (tinted to whatever tone you find appealing). This varnish-stain combination is likely to achieve the trick in a single coat.


If you prefer a lighter color, use paint remover or, if necessary, chlorine bleach to remove as much of the old stain as necessary (or an aggressive stripper). If your cabinet doors have crevices or shapes, use elbow grease and a scraper. Before sanding to create a smooth surface, repair any dents, fissures, or deep scratches with wood filler. Allow the stain you’ve chosen to dry before applying a coat of protective wood sealant. Dry the surfaces with 000 steel wool and then wipe with a tack cloth.


Using Paint to Restore Cabinets


Just as you can restore cabinets with worn-out stain finishes, you can also restore cabinets with worn-out painted surfaces.


  1. Using a paint stripper, remove as much of the old finish as possible. Then, where necessary, use a sharp scraper to remove any remains of the original finish.
  2. Repair any dents, scratches, or other surface damage with wood filler.
  3. When the newly smoothed surfaces are dry, sand them with 100 grit sandpaper, then 180 grit, and lastly 220 grit.
  4. Paint in any color you want; wipe surfaces with a tack cloth before applying sealant.
  5. When the sealer has dried, lightly rub the surfaces with 000 steel wool and use a tack cloth to remove any remaining dust.


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