Paint cabinets to brighten a shabby kitchen. Choose an oil-based paint or a water-borne acrylic enamel. Both create tough, durable surfaces that’ll take hard wear.


Priming old cabinets

Carefully sand and prime will set the stage for a smooth, durable top coat.

Painting is a great choice to give new life to old wooden kitchen cabinets. There are several good paint options. To have the best adhesion and a harder, more durable finish, an oil-based (alkyd) paint odour is a tough one.  You have to be able to put up with the strong odour and the flammable solvent cleanup, along with much longer drying period and curing time as compared to ordinary water-based paint. Plus, the colour will tend to get yellow over a period of time.

To avoid the hassle of oil-based paint, the best way is to use the newly improved waterborne acrylic enamel paint that is able to provide good and consistent flow, the required levelling and hardening attributes of an oil-based paint all without the odour and long drying time. These newly improved paints dry up fast and can be easily cleaned with soap and water. The main challenge is a smooth finish, but as many Singapore handyman may agree, that, if the waterborne acrylic enamel is applied heavily enough and as we worked it out in small sections, it will have a nicely flattened result. You have to be mindful to avoid using a dry brush and going over sections that are already starting to dry.

Lastly, please do not miss out the other keys to the success when painting the cabinets; they are the surface preparation (cleaning and sanding), priming (using of a high quality primer), brushing (by using the highest quality brush for that particular paint) and drying (please follow the label directions on the paint can).

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