Kitchen Cabinets – Once installed kitchen cabinets for the past 15 years, it has almost become an automatic process for me when building and installing cabinets. I really forget how it feels to install my first set of new kitchen cabinets. I was surprised at how many diy’ers that were leaving messages on my blog asking questions about how to get the cabinet.
One of the common mistakes that have happened is the installer is connecting the cabinet sides together, rather than linking them in the face of the frame. Although this is not a problem with frameless cabinets, it becomes a problem with framed cabinets because of the “lip” that overlaps the sides of the cabinet. Why are frameless cabinets installed different? First let’s talk about how the cabinet is built.
Also Read: Kitchen cabinets: Reface or Replace?
Traditional cabinets with a face frame have a groove that the side panels fit into to create a strong and sturdy cabinet. Since this groove is not on the very edge of the cabinet, the face frame usually overlaps the sides of the cabinet with a 3/16″ or somewhere in the vicinity of distance. While this poses a stronger cabinet, it prevents you from getting the sides of the cabinet together without the use of the space in-between.
Since kitchen cabinets are attached to the wall first and get most of their support from there, you really just need to get the face frames to each other in order to create a strong horizontal support. By trying to get the sides to each other, you can create one of two problems – either party will succumb and weaken the cabinet, or it will make some separation at the face frame. Although this is more of a cosmetic issue, it can be avoided by securing the cabinets to each other through the face frame and not through the sides.
This is also the base of the cabinet, which will have the same characteristics as the wall cabinets mentioned above. For framed cabinets, they really gain strength by securing the sides of the cabinet to each other. Without a face frame to tie it all together, they rely on the support from the back and sides. Since they do not have lips on the sides, they can be secured tightly together.
So if you’re planning on installing your own kitchen cabinets, it is important to consider the type of cabinet you are installing(framed or frameless), and use appropriate techniques to ensure a strong bond and the right support.