How to Paint Cupboards

If your cupboards or kitchen cabinets are looking a little worse for wear but you don’t want to go to the expense of replacing them then consider giving them a coat of paint.

Like any DIY Painting job it’s all about preparation and technique and in this easy to follow guide we’ll show you how to paint your cupboards or cabinets with ease.

Step 1

Firstly you’ll need to give your cupboards a really good clean to remove any dirt, grease and grime. Get a bucket of hot water and add some Sugar Soap. This helps dissolve grease and grime. Don’t forget to wear some rubber gloves to save burning yourself from the hot water. Give the cupboards a really good clean with a the solution and a sponge. Dry off with a clean dry cloth or rag.

Step 2

You should realize that the surfaces of cupboards are covered with a laminate that is slick and shiny but don’t worry. There are a number of paints that are specifically designed to cover these surfaces and can be found in any good DIY Store.

Step 3

Take a sheet of fine grade sandpaper, either by hand or with an electric sander, and lightly sand the cupboards. This will help the paint adhere to the surface.

Step 4

Once you have finished sanding the cupboards wipe them down with a lint-free cloth and White Spirit.

Step 5

Use masking tape to cover any door handles. Most cupboard door handles are easy to remove by unscrewing the screws on the inside of the door. If you can remove the handles, do so, as this will make painting much easier.

Step 6

A really nice tip here is to replace the screw of the handle back in the screw hole and secure it with masking tape on the inside of the door. This will save you from filling the screw holes with paint and give you something to hold on to when opening and closing the door.

Step 7

Place some masking tape around the edges where you don’t want paint to go. This will leave you with a nice clean paint line when finished and removed.

Step 8

Lay down a dust sheet to protect your flooring from any unwanted paint drips.

Step 9

It’s now time to start painting your cupboards. As explained above, there are a number of paints on the market that are designed for this job, so do ask the staff at your local DIY Store. These paints are also available in a One-Coat solution. Read the information on the tin and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for use.

Step 10

Apply the paint evenly with a brush size of between 2 to 2.5 inches.

Step 11

Start with the edges around the cupboard door and then apply paint to the front. Do not overload the paint brush and apply in long smooth strokes.

Step 12

If the cupboard needs a second coat ensure that the first is completely dry before applying. Read the manufacturers drying times printed on the tin.

Step 13

If you do manage to smear or drip paint in unwanted places then remove this with a lint-free cloth and White Spirit.

Step 14

Finally remove the masking tape and replace the handles.

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how to paint cupboards

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  • Katie Guyot

    Please explain/define “WHITE SPIRIT”

    • hometipster

      Hi Katie

      In the UK ‘White Spirit’ is almost the same as Mentholated Spirit. Its used to clean paint brushes that have been used for Oil Based Paints.

      Does that help? If not please let me know and I’ll do some searching around for other terms it’s referred to.