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Refacing your existing cabinets

To reface or replace?

We are regularly asked about the advantages and disadvantages of refacing an existing kitchen compared to starting afresh. There is no single answer, and it ultimately depends on the construction & condition of your existing cabinets as well as your budget.

There is no doubt that a brand new kitchen, laundry, wardrobe or bathroom vanity gives you the ultimate freedom in layout, corner cabinet access, ergonomics, effective pantry storage, selection of appliances and making sure you have plenty of functional soft close drawers. But there are some situations where it is absolutely worth replacing just the benchtops and updating your fronts and panels. You can save thousands of $$$ in the process with a bit of work, planning and attention to detail to minimise potential compromise on the end results.

Questions to ask are:

  • Are you totally happy with the current layout of the kitchen? Is there another approach to the space that would work better?
  • Will a reface add value to your home, or will a buyer be looking to replace it anyway?
  • Do you have enough drawers and what is the condition of the existing drawer runners and hinges?
  • Can you get into your corner cupboards and pantry?
  • Are you happy to replace appliances like for like, or do you have something else in mind?
  • What are your plans for your splashbacks and flooring?
  • Will a change in benchtop thickness or door material mean there are other areas that will also need attention?
  • Can you access and remove end panels, bulkheads, and how much disassembly of the existing kitchen are you comfortable with?
  • Budget aside, will you be happy with the results?

A fresh look to this bathroom with new fronts and benchtops

Advantages of refacing your cabinets:

  • Potential saving of thousands of $$$
  • With good planning, renovation timeframes can be reduced and some updates can be completed over time
  • EZIKIT’s custom sizing means you don’t have to try and fit standard panels and benchtops in a non standard kitchen (note, most kitchens are not standard!)
  • Some existing appliances can be left in place permanently or until you are ready to change them
  • Modern cabinet construction does make refacing practical and achievable

Disadvantages of refacing:

  • EZIKIT can assist with material selections, but there is generally little that can be done to improve the design
  • You are stuck with someone else’s design and layout
  • Limited ability to improve access and ergonomics
  • You or your builder will need to provide measurements and drilling details
  • Broken is broken – there are some things that are just not worth the effort!
  • Sometimes it is actually easier to start again
  • Old construction methods or appliance integration usually means compromise and creativity is required