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Should You Paint the Inside of Kitchen Cabinets?

should you paint the inside of kitchen cabinets

The time will come when you will need to change/update your kitchen décor, and if you know anything about such a process, you know it can be quite expensive.

Painting your kitchen cabinets can help you avoid the high-cost implication of a total remodeling, while profoundly improving your kitchen décor.

Sure, cabinet painting does sound simple enough.

However, there are several challenges you may face in the process.

One of such problems is whether you should paint the inside of your kitchen cabinets or not.

In this article, we will carefully review and answer this question while also discussing some other cabinet painting tips.

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Kitchen Cabinet Painting Tips

Kitchen cabinet painting is not an overly complicated process.

Nevertheless, there are certain tips that can make the process easier for you and the result more satisfactory.

Clean Thoroughly

Kitchen cabinets require deep cleaning from time to time as they tend to greasy.

Oil vapor from your cooking floats around creates a coating that cannot be removed by simple wiping.

If you have always neglected to clean your cabinets, you have to do so before painting, or else, the primer will have a hard time sticking.

Get a good degreaser to thoroughly clean all exposed parts of your cabinets before you start the painting process.

Remove Doors and Drawers

It may seem a bit arduous, but it is somewhat necessary that you remove doors, drawers, knobs, hinges, and other related hardware before you paint the cabinets.

This makes it easy to paint effectively and avoid damages to hinges and knobs as a result of painting over them.

Label Hardware

Label the doors, drawers, knobs, hinges, and other hardware as soon as you remove them, to know which part goes where when you are ready to reassemble.

This is particularly important if you have many cabinets to paint on.

Sand the Surfaces

To make the surfaces of the cabinets paint-ready, sand them lightly with a 120 grit sandpaper.

Wooden cabinets- finished or unfinished- are the best to paint, because you can easily sand them to ensure good paint bonding.

Materials like laminate are not so easy to sand, as they require much care so as not to tear through them.

Also, laminate materials do not bind with paint as well as wood materials, but with a light sanding, they will do just fine.


Following the thorough cleaning and preparation of your cabinets, you should apply an oil-base bonding primer before you go ahead to paint.

Depending on the paint color you will use, you may have to tint the primer so that the colors match.

It may seem quite attractive to paint on your cabinets without priming.

However, you risk stains or the bare surface of the wood showing through the paint layer after it cures.

Take Your Time

Another mistake a lot of people make is that they believe they can rush through the painting process, and it becomes quite overwhelming for them along the way.

Considering the cleaning and preparation required, you may not be able to complete the project over the weekend.

Take as much time as you need to ensure an efficient painting process.

Allow the Paint to Dry Before Reassembly

You will smudge individual sections of the painted surfaces if you don’t allow it to cure fully before you rush to reassemble the cabinet fixtures.

This would imply another tedious process of sanding and painting over the smudges.

If you eventually decide to paint the interior, more time will be required for the inside to dry entirely than the exterior would need.

Should You Paint the Inside of Kitchen Cabinets?

should you paint the inside of kitchen cabinets spray paint before after drawers

In the most typical situations, kitchen cabinet interiors are left unpainted.

In reality, it is of little effect whether or not the inside of the kitchen cabinets are painted.

The cabinet interior is adequately protected from oil vapors that will typically attach to cabinet exteriors, so you can do as you like.

However, you should paint both sides of the cabinet doors.

You should find this easy enough because you are required to remove the doors before painting on them.

On the other hand, if the insides of your kitchen cabinets are already painted, it is just as ideal that you touch them when repainting the cabinets.

If you eventually decide to paint the interior, you should know that it is not an easy process as the exterior painting would be, as access to the innermost part will be quite restricted.

It takes more effort to paint kitchen cabinet interiors than most people envision.

Painting upside down and reaching corners are two things that will prove very challenging.

Furthermore, you need to consider the likelihood of getting paint chips in your kitchen utensils and equipment.

While this does not always happen, if the painting is not done rightly, you will most likely end up with chips of paint stain whatever it is your store in those cabinets.

Another thing you want to consider before you make a decision is the condition of your cabinets.

If your cabinets are in good, then you are most likely repainting for decoration purposes; this doesn’t require you to paint the interior.

However, if you are painting the cabinets to increase their lifespan and make them last longer, you may have to paint the interior, to ensure absolute protection.


Painting the inside of kitchen cabinets is entirely dependent on personal preference.

There are diverse testimonies from homeowners who have tried to paint their kitchen cabinet interiors; some love it, and some believe that it is unnecessary.

The conclusion is that unless you are doing it to preserve/improve the condition of your kitchen cabinets, you don’t have to paint the interior.

Before you make your final choice, you should also consider the difficulty in accessing the interiors.

This is very important for Do-It-Yourself enthusiasts who plan to paint by themselves.

To make the painting process a success, we have included some essential painting tips you should consider.

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