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Quick Cabinet Touch-Up Ideas

Quick Cabinet Touch-Up Ideas

Nothing can be more frustrating than a blemish on your otherwise pristine cabinets. Luckily, there are a few ways that you can touch up your finished cabinet doors and drawer fronts without having to replace the whole thing. In this quick guide, we are going to take a look at ways you can touchup trouble spots on your kitchen cabinets so that you don’t have to replace any cabinet doors or drawer fronts.

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Solid Wood Kitchen Cabinets

Solid wood kitchen cabinets are often finished with polyurethane after they are painted or stained. Polyurethane finishes are available in both oil and water bases, and they are a great way to protect and seal your cabinets. These products are also available in various sheens ranging from matte to gloss. While either water base or oil base products can be used to seal kitchen cabinets, oil base typically has greater heat resistance. And so, when touching up cabinets that have a polyurethane coating, it is best to use the exact same product for the repair.

For deeper and more severe scratches and dents, you may have to sand the area down a bit before resealing it. This is why it is important to get the same polyurethane that is used on the rest of the door. Some polyurethanes have slight tints while others are entirely clear. Plus, water based and oil based polyurethanes behave differently over time. If you hired professionals to install your kitchen, you can try reaching out to your contractor to find out what type of polyurethane was used. If you cannot determine what type was used, it is likely best to start with a clean option.

However, polyurethane is not the only option for repairing scratches and scrapes on your kitchen cabinets. Read on to learn more ways you can quickly and easily touch up your kitchen cabinets.

Before You Get Started

Before you get started touching up your kitchen cabinets, there are a few steps you can take to ensure that the repair is as successful as possible. First, head over to your cabinets. You will need to inspect your cabinet boxes to ensure that there is no damage such as mold or mildew. Once you have confirmed that the cabinet boxes are all structurally sound, you can move on to the cabinet doors and drawer fronts.

Before you sanding down and filling in scratches and scrapes, you will need to clean your surfaces. You can do this by taking a sponge or rag and dipping it in warm, diluted soapy water, and then wiping down the cabinet doors and drawer fronts. After, use a cloth or paper towel to dry the surfaces.

Alternative Touch Up Method for Finished Cabinets

Just reapplying the polyurethane is great is if you have clear finished kitchen cabinets. If this is not the case, it is important to match the existing color. For painted cabinets, you will need to use the same paint to touch up your cabinets after sanding away the damaged areas. But for stained cabinet doors, you will have to use different methods.

Walnuts can be used as a kind of “eraser” on scratches on solid wood cabinets. This age-old technique is quick, easy, and cheap to do. However, if your cabinets are not close to the same color as the walnut, then this method might not produce the exact results you are looking for.

Pro Tip

Sanding is a vital step to any touch up method you pursue. Not only does sanding help even out the surface, it also helps the new sealant bond to the cabinet door or drawer front. For most dents and scratches, gently using a medium grit sandpaper will be sufficient for this job.

Fill Sticks and Wood Filler

Sometimes you will need to fill in the scratches and scrapes on your kitchen cabinets. The product you will use for this depends on whether you have solid wood cabinets or laminate cabinets. For solid wood, you will use a wood filler. For laminates, we offer a fill stick to repair damages to the surface.

Both of these products are available in wide variety of colors, so you should be able to find the match for your cabinets. It is very important to allow for enough time for the filler to harden before moving on with the touch up process. In fact, it is sometimes recommended to use the filler in small layers and allowing each to harden, rather than filling the hole in a single application.

Finishing Up

While not a major repair or replacement, touching up your cabinet doors and drawer fronts can bring your cabinets back to life. Erasing those distracting dents and scratches on your kitchen cabinets will also help to restore the sense of unity created by an uninterrupted line of cabinetry.

If you are ready to start ordering or if you need assistance, please feel free to call us at 1-855-669-5222 or send us an email at Our team of cabinet experts is here to help with everything from measuring to ordering.