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How to Identify High Quality Kitchen Cabinet Doors

Replacing your cabinet doors is a great way to improve the appearance and durability of your kitchen. However, the last thing you want is to replace your cabinet doors with a cheap quality product. High-end cabinets are unmistakable and can change your entire kitchen and give it a classy, admirable appearance. By knowing what to look for, you can guarantee that your kitchen cabinet doors are crafted from the best quality wood with remarkable expertise.

Characteristics of a High-End Cabinets 

High-quality cabinet doors are going to stand out in any household, so you want to be sure you are getting the real deal. The following factors will help you figure out how to tell good quality cabinet doors from poor quality cabinet doors.

- Thickness of the Lumber

While there are dozens of factors that separate top quality from lower quality the first indication of high quality is the cabinet door thickness. Because thin lumber is less expensive than thicker lumber, almost all low-end door manufacturers save money with the thin stock.

The difference between thicker and thin doors is in the depth of the face detail. The thinner the door, the less depth between the face of the door and the point where the panel secures into the frame. A door using 3/4-inch material will have 20% less depth, which is obvious in the finished product. Thicker doors start with 1-inch thick material and produce a door of slightly over 13/16-inches. This extra 20% of face depth produces a door with significantly more detailed face molding pattern and adds a much richer look to the cabinets.

- Quality of the Materials

Possibly an even more concerning cost-saving practice among lower quality manufacturers is the practice of using lower quality (cheaper) materials. It's a valid assumption that a manufacturer cutting costs by using thin material will also be cutting costs by using lower quality lumber.

It's actually difficult to recognize lower quality woods in a set of cabinet doors because all the doors use the same woods and there will be no superior quality doors to compare against. But when a kitchen of low-quality woods is compared to a kitchen of superior, color matched, woods the difference is striking. The doors using lower quality woods will have noticeable color mismatches and mineral streaks, where the top-quality doors will be of uniform color. A door made from high-quality wood will always stand out.

- Details of the Finishing

Differences in quality are almost always seen in the final machining and sanding of your cabinet doors. Both of these areas will have a large impact on the final appearance of your finished kitchen. Poor machining and sanding will highlight scratches and nicks all the way through the finish. While staining is usually more forgiving of poor sanding, painted doors will magnify even the slightest scratches or blemishes. Unfortunately, there are manufacturers that will try to cover up a job done poorly, so make sure to keep an eye out for blemishes on your new doors.

- High-Quality Soft-Close Hinges

Soft close hinges can increase the longevity of your cabinets and help you avoid everyday wear and tear. This high-quality hinge also improves durability, stability, and noise reduction. The right hinges can also elevate the aesthetic appeal of your cabinets, helping you achieve a polished, put-together look. If you opt for an inexpensive alternative, it could impact the overall lifespan of your premium cabinets.

- Company Warranty

A warranty provides you with peace of mind. It also shows that the supplier is confident in their craftsmanship. At CabinetDoors.com, all our high-quality cabinets and drawer fronts are backed by a one-year warranty. If there is any defect in our workmanship or the material, we'll replace them for you, free of charge. 

- Craftsmanship

The craftsmanship of the high-end cabinets can impact durability, functionality, and quality. When you order from a trusted supplier, you can feel confident in the structural integrity and precision. While shopping for premium cabinets, you'll want to pay attention to the cabinet door panel thickness, grain pattern matching, and the functionality of the design.

Does Cabinet Door Thickness Matter?

Thicker cabinet doors are just one of the signs of a high-quality cabinet door. If a cabinet door is flimsy or built too thin, it means that your manufacturer was likely trying to cut costs. A thin cabinet door will look cheap and will start to degrade after minimal use.

When you look for cabinet doors, be sure to carefully observe the material that they use and the overall cabinet door thickness. If the material seems cheap, it probably is. When you put the time and effort into replacing your cabinet doors, you deserve a quality product, so be sure to check the credibility and capability of the manufacturer you are using. Fortunately, there are manufacturers that can provide quality cabinet doors at an affordable price.

What are the Different Quality Levels of Cabinets?

When shopping for premium cabinets for your next DIY project, there are a few different types to consider. This includes:

Ready-to-Assemble 

These are a low-cost cabinet that comes in various styles and sizes. No assembly is required, making RTA cabinets a good option for DIY installation. However, these cabinet doors are typically made with low-quality materials and aren't built to last. They are also not customizable and may not perfectly fit your current cabinets. 

Stock

Stock cabinets are pre-sized and sold in large retailers across the country. They are mass-produced in common fixed sizes. The sizing cannot be adjusted or altered, so they may not fit perfectly. This budget-friendly is not ideal for kitchens or bathrooms with irregular dimensions. 

The material used is also not always sturdy or well-made. Stock cabinets tend to be made with thinner lumber and have more inconsistencies. The standard cabinet door thickness for stock is around 19 mm, while custom is around 19-25mm. The standard cabinet door thickness will vary depending on the manufacturer. 

Semi-Custom 

Semi-custom cabinet doors are pre-manufactured cabinets that can be adjusted to fit the unique dimensions of your current cabinets in your kitchen or bathroom. They are considered the perfect middle ground between stock and custom cabinets. However, the quality and craftsmanship of the cabinets may vary depending on the manufacturer.

Custom-Made

Custom-made cabinets are considered premium cabinets. These cabinets are custom-made to fit your current cabinets and provide the perfect fit. They are available in various styles, sizes, and wood species. When looking for high-quality cabinets for your next home renovation project, custom cabinets are a more durable, sturdy, and aesthetically appealing choice. While they may come at a higher cost, the lifespan of these quality kitchen cabinets is much longer than the alternatives. 

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What Questions Should I Ask My Manufacturer?

Before committing to receiving your cabinet doors from a manufacturer, you should go through a bit of a vetting process. The following questions are a good way to assess the capability of the manufacturer and the quality of the doors you will receive. If you don't feel comfortable with your door supplier’s answers to these questions, it may be a good idea to look for another manufacturer. Questions to ask when selecting a door manufacturer include:

1. What is the thickness of the finished door? Thin cabinet doors will warp, crack, or just provide a cheap looking appearance to your kitchen. At CabinetDoors.com, our doors are a plump 13/16 inches thick.

2. What is the thickness tolerance from one door to the next? Thickness tolerance highlights whether the size of each cabinet door is consistent. Some variation is normal, but it should not be excessive. Each of our cabinet doors will be within 15/1000 inch of the others.

3. What is the size tolerance (industry standard is /16-inch to 1/8-inch)? Size tolerance also demonstrates consistency across all of the cabinet doors. While our doors are all within 1/64 inch when completed, we guarantee 1/16-inch size tolerance because humidity fluctuations will naturally expand or contract all wood products.

4. What is the final sanding grit used in the doors? The final sanding grit plays a key part in the final appearance of your cabinet doors. Our doors are wide belt sanded to 180 grit then hand sanded.

5. Are the cross-grain scratches produced in wide belt sanding removed? Cross-grain scratches are an often-inevitable part of the wide-belt sanding process, but if they are not removed, it can ruin the quality appearance of your doors. At CabinetDoors.com, cross-grain scratches are removed with a Timesavers Orbital.

6. Are the doors hand sanded during final inspection? Hand sanded doors ensure a smooth, clean-looking final finish. At CabinetDoors.com, each door is hand sanded during our detailed quality inspection process.

What are Considered High-End Cabinets?

While store-bought cabinets may be convenient, they won't provide the perfect fit you're looking for. Custom-made cabinets are cut and made to order. They use the exact measurements of your current cabinets to ensure a perfect fit. While custom-made may come at a higher cost, they are considered premium cabinets. With a custom-made premium cabinet, you can get a one-of-a-kind cabinet tailored to complement the size of your cabinets and your aesthetic choices.

Explore High-Quality Cabinet Doors

At CabinetDoors.com, we are proud to produce a quality product. For over 40 years, we have prided ourselves on providing carefully manufactured kitchen cabinet doors delivered right to our customers’ doors. Explore our impressive inventory of high-quality kitchen cabinet doors today by browsing and pricing any of our door styles. Our quality doors are sure to provide you the best kitchen cabinets for the money.

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