Kitchen Cabinet Construction Make Your Kitchen Last
Kitchen cabinet construction will affect how well your kitchen will last and operate. Knowing how cabinets are constructed lets you choose a cabinet that is best for you and your family. Cabinets are expensive, and it＊s always a good idea to know a little bit about what you＊re buying.
We have covered face frame cabinets and frameless kitchen cabinets so that you know how the front of the cabinet are affected by your choice. And you also know how the overall appearance of your kitchen will be affected by your selection of kitchen cabinet styles. But what else is good to know about kitchen cabinet construction?
Kitchen Cabinet Construction Quality
As with so many products that you can buy, there is good, better and best. And there＊s no difference with cabinets. With each step up the quality ladder comes extra cost. Before you invest in cabinets we＊ll try to give you a better idea of what you should look for.
The two major building blocks of the kitchen cabinets are the base and wall cabinets. The base cabinets support the kitchen counter tops, and the wall cabinets are attached to the wall usually above the base cabinets as they name implies.
When you think of kitchen cabinet construction you think of wood, right? Well, it is true that most cabinets are made of wood.
And generally speaking the door and drawers and face fame of the cabinets are made of some kind of solid hardwood.
Some are even made of a soft wood like knotty pine cabinets. Some doors and drawers, on the other hand are not made out of wood.
They are made of man-made wood that is then covered with a finish material. Examples of those are laminate cabinets and thermofoil cabinets.
The kitchen cabinet styles of the cabinets are what you see and admire. But shouldn＊t you know what the interior parts are made of too? The cabinet boxes that make up the inside portion of the cabinets are usually made out of particleboard, medium density fiberboard or plywood.
- Particleboard is a man-made wood product that is made of wood chips and particles that are fused together with an adhesive. The majority of the boxes and shelves in cabinets today are made with this material.
- Medium density fiberboard (MDF) is another man-made product that is made of wood fiber and the sheets are molded together with an adhesive. This product is more stable and heavier then particleboard and is used in cabinet box and shelf production.It is also used or some cabinet doors that are laminated with a finish material.
- Plywood is a man-made product that is closer to real wood. It is made up of thin veneers of wood that are glued and pressed together to make up the sheets. The wood veneers all have the grain alternate in direction from one layer to the next, for added rigidity.Plywood is used for cabinet boxes, shelves and sometimes for doors when a different finish material is planned.
The reason that we point out the different kinds of kitchen cabinet construction materials is so you know what you are getting when you select your cabinets.
Plywood cabinet boxes are often an upgrade for most makers of cabinets or is a standard in higher end cabinets.
It may not matter to you what the inside of the cabinets are made of as long as they function well. It is useful, however, to know that cabinets that are made with plywood boxes are a better quality that will last longer.
Sometimes cabinet makers refer to their cabinet as being ※all wood§ typically meaning that the door, drawers and front frames are all solid wood with the boxes and shelves being constructed of plywood.
Outside of the material that cabinets are made of, the next thing to look at is how they are built. Are you starting to think that this is too much information? It really isn＊t. The overall quality and durability of the cabinets relate to the quality of the materials and the construction techniques used.
Quality Construction Methods
- Dovetail joints 每 Are the drawers of the cabinets dovetailed together at the corners as opposed to being stapled together?
- Doweled corners 每 Instead of dovetail joints in the drawers, the corners can be doweled together. Is this technique being used or are the corners just stapled together?
- Deep mortise and long tenon 每 Do the cabinet doors feature this type of solid construction at the corners?
- Dado groove 每 Do the drawer have a dado groove cut into the sides so that the drawer bottom can fit securely or is the bottom just glued and nailed?
- Rabbet Corners 每 This is a 90-degree slot that is placed in one board to accept the other joining board securely. Do the corners of the cabinet box feature this types of corners or are they just butt jointed and stapled?
- Corner bracing 每 Are there corner braces or additional bracing inside the cabinet box that increases rigidity?
- Cabinet shelves 每 Are cabinet shelves thick enough or feature rigid face stiles to carry weight as needed?
- Are screws being used to enhance the strength of the cabinets?
Look for all of these type of ※locking together§ kitchen cabinet construction when looking for high quality cabinets. Also, look for as much solid wood or plywood as possible.
Sometimes this type of quality kitchen cabinet construction will push the cabinets beyond your budget. If this is the case you might consider lesser built cabinets in order to get the overall price down.
This is not to say that lesser built cabinets are bad. There are lots of homes out there that have beautiful cabinets that don＊t have higher-end construction. It really boils down to how important quality kitchen cabinet construction is to you and how that fits into your budget.