The Trifecta of a New Painted Kitchen
You’ve had it–you’re ripping out your old kitchen and starting over. After countless hours considering your options and leafing through home design magazines you’ve decided you want a new painted kitchen. Now that you’ve decided on what you want, here are tips on how to get it without the headaches.
When building a new painted kitchen there is a trifecta for success: a knowledgeable cabinet maker, a quality manufacturer, and an experienced polisher. If any one of these key players fails to produce quality services or products, the others can’t complete their jobs successfully.
Take This Example:
A cabinet maker plans and designs a kitchen but buys low quality medium-density fibreboard (MDF) panels that are not moisture resistant. Even if the cabinet maker cuts them well, they won’t be smooth and they’ll require more coats of paint, costing more money in the end. Also, the panels will easily sustain water damage causing the homeowner to replace them sooner. In the end, it doesn’t matter how well the kitchen was designed or how well the polisher painted the panels. If the panels are low quality, the kitchen won’t hold up.
Whether or not you’re paying top dollar for your new cabinets, make sure you have a solid team comprised of a knowledgeable cabinet maker, a quality manufacturer, and an experienced polisher.
This is why you, as an educated consumer, need to arm yourself with the right questions. It’s easier to figure out how to get things done right the first time than to figure out how to fix them afterwards.
Questions to Ask:
-Where are the MDF panels manufactured?
TIP: If the doors are being manufactured in Australia, they will comply with Australian Standards. Doors can be manufactured in another country and SOLD to consumers in Australia without complying to the Australian Standards. Ask your distributor or importer for complete documentation.
-Who will be painting the cabinets? (It will either be done by the cabinet maker or by an independent polisher)
TIP: Ask to see their work in person. A picture can be deceiving. Most quality polishers will let you visit their factory and see the process as well as a recently finished job.
-What kind of paint will be used? (Two-pac polyurethane or two-pac acid catalyst)
TIP: Two-pac polyurethane is more durable than two-pac acid catalyst. Over 25 years ago, two-pac acid catalyst was popular. Now, two-pac polyurethane is the industry standard for quality paint jobs because it is more moisture and heat resistant than two-pac acid catalyst. Ask which paint your cabinet maker or polisher uses.
-Where is the paint made?
TIP: Paint can be sourced from other countries, such as China. This can pose a problem since paint should be specifically formulated for the climate in which it is being used.
-What fixtures and hinges will be used?
TIP: Not all fixtures and hinges are created equal. Quality hinges can make all the difference to the feel of new kitchen cabinets.
Other Things to Keep in Mind
Research your options. Ask people you know for recommendations. Read online reviews. A company’s reputation is hard to hide these days.
Keep in mind that many associations just require a membership fee to join. A professional affiliation is not necessarily a qualification.
A cabinet maker/polisher/manufacturer can go bankrupt then reopen under another name. Ask if they have changed their business name. If so, be very weary. They failed for a reason.
If you get a bad feeling or if a deal seems too good to be true, go with your instincts. They will steer you in the right direction.