Replacing Kitchen Cabinet Hardware – Bob Vila
Wait a minute, before you decide to take on the hassle and expense of a full kitchen renovation, consider that a variety of cheaper, simpler alternatives can make a similarly dramatic change, especially when combined. For example, homeowners typically treat details like closet hardware as trivial – an “afterthought,” said Jim Eldredge, product manager at Sears Home Services. But in the kitchen, he says, seemingly unimportant components can “have a surprisingly large impact on the overall interior design”. However, replacing your closet hardware is no magic. It can’t make old cabinets look new again. When your kitchen has seen better days, take the time to carefully examine the condition of the cabinet drawers and cabinet doors. As long as the boxes are kept in decent condition, you can actually leave them intact and just redesign or replace the cabinet doors. In combination with new hardware in particular, updated cabinet fronts can completely redesign the look of your kitchen in a short time and usually on a low budget.
Whether you are installing new cabinet doors or just refurbishing existing ones, Eldredge advises that when choosing cabinet hardware it is a mistake to “focus only on aesthetics”. To be satisfactory over the long term, new hardware needs to do more than just look good. There are important practical considerations to keep in mind. Would you like to learn more about effective, affordable kitchen upgrades? Continue reading!
When you decide to install new hardware as part of your closet upgrade project, you will quickly find that “homeowners are spoiled for choice,” as Eldredge puts it. With so many compelling hardware options, many find it challenging to choose from all of the styles and finishes available. To make the selection process clearer, Eldredge recommends narrowing down the field step by step. First he says, “Decide what kind of hardware to install.” There are certainly exceptions, but according to popular belief, knobs go best with doors and pulls go best with drawers for ease of use. Once you have clarified the type or types of hardware you prefer, you can move on to choosing a style. To do this, Eldredge recommends taking clues from your closets. In a sleek, modern kitchen with clean, clean lines, “people tend to use slimmer, more angular hardware,” he says. In traditional kitchens, hardware is now more likely to show up with finer details and curves. However, when you upgrade both the case and the hardware, you can consider an almost limitless number of exciting design combinations. Nothing is off the table.
A similar approach can help you choose not just a hardware style, but a hardware finish as well. For example, many experts recommend adapting the new housing hardware finish to the finish of the existing kitchen lighting and sanitary fittings. Others argue that the hardware is the best match for the devices. Still others claim that the hardware in particular must complement the color of the paint or stain on the cabinets. When it comes to light-colored or white-painted furniture, Eldredge says, “Black and stainless steel are among the most popular.” For darker cabinets, however, it is advisable to “think of oil-rubbed bronze or brushed nickel,” he says. Ultimately, however, when it comes to updating cabinets, Eldredge admits, “Guidelines are just guidelines; They can only get you so far. “Given the multitude of variables, the advice and guidance of seasoned professionals can be invaluable. One benefit of working with a statewide name like Sears Home Services is that the project coordinators explain all of the options that will help you get the most out of your remodeling dollar. Would you like to discuss your kitchen with a qualified expert? Click here to schedule a free in-home consultation today!
“What the hardware looks like – that’s only half the battle,” explains Eldredge. Even if you’re not a chef, chances are good you’ll be interacting with your cabinet hardware morning and night, says Eldredge. In these circumstances, it is only wise to make sure that you like the way a button or pull feels in your hand as much as you like it, as it looks to your eye. To that end, Eldredge says, “I always urge people to test the hardware before installing it.” If the hardware is pinching your fingers or if the sharp edges are causing discomfort across the board, keep looking. You will not be satisfied with your choice if you cannot naturally manipulate the hardware without a second thought. For the same reason, take the time to ensure that the size and shape of the hardware you choose will support the weight of your cabinets. While standard sized knobs are usually sufficient for average sized doors, larger doors and most drawers are easier to open with fittings large enough to accommodate multiple fingers. Therefore, when updating both cabinet doors and cabinet hardware, it is often a good idea to determine, or at least inform, where you land on questions regarding the latter, in order to make decisions about the former.
Finally, realize the bigger context for upgrading the cabinet hardware. Kitchens are very busy and subject to frequent, heavy use that inevitably collects grease, sand and dirt. To make matters worse, while it is easy to spot crumbs and spills on, for example, worktops, it is often not that easy with furniture fittings. Do yourself a favor, and as Eldredge advises, “Consider daily grooming in your decision-making.” As much as you love the look of certain elaborate, intricate hardware designs, it’s worth asking whether those particular details are worth the extra effort it would take to keep them clean. Since cooking grease and dirty fingerprints accumulate not only on the hardware but also on the surrounding cabinets, many homeowners also choose to replace or redesign their cabinet doors with a low-maintenance material or finish. After all, you can’t have a low maintenance kitchen if there are no low maintenance components installed in the parts of the room that are most likely to wear out over time.
Different homeowners take different considerations into account when planning a budget kitchen upgrade. Regardless of the scope of the project, however, every remodeling always ends the same way – by putting your plans into action. Obviously, if you just want to use hardware of the same type and size as your existing buttons and pulls, this is an easy replacement that you can probably do yourself without a contractor. However, if you want to go a step further and upgrade not just your hardware but also your cabinets, the next step is often to hire knowledgeable professionals. Sears Home Services is different from local contractors in a number of ways, but last but not least, when working with Sears, whether straightforward or complex, the coordinators guide you through every step of the remodeling process from the earliest planning stages to complete installation. When working with a contractor, you usually have a right to expect the job to be done on time and on budget. But with Sears Home Services, you can expect all that and more – namely a satisfaction guarantee that shows a commitment to the continued success of your project.
This article was brought to you by Sears Home Services. His facts and opinions are those of BobVila.com.