Painting Vinyl Cabinet Doors

White Cabinets

Follow the steps in this article for painting your vinyl Thermofoil kitchen cabinet doors. Painting this style door requires special wax removers and paint. This method will work for all types of PVC wrapped vinyl moldings in your kitchen as well.

Tools & Materials Needed

  • Cabinet Rescue Paint
  • Fine Sand Paper 220 or less
  • Rags
  • Paint Pan
  • Brush
  • Vinyl Wax Stripper
  • Phillips Screwdriver
  • Four Saw Horses
  • 2-4′ x 8′ Support Boards
  • Elmers Glue All
  • Lacquer Thinner

Remember that preparing to paint your vinyl kitchen cabinet doors is the most important part of the project. If you do not prepare the surface properly, your doors are not going to look good or last a long time.

  • Important: Allow plenty of time for the paint to dry before you flip them over to do the other side. DO NOT RUSH through this project. Patience is the key to your success.
  1. First remove the vinyl doors from the cabinets using the Phillips screwdriver. You may have clip European cabinet hinges that will release without using the screw driver. The clips are located at the back of the hinge. Just pull up and it will release the mechanism from the plate on the cabinet side.
  2. Take all of the hinges off of the doors. If you have European hinges, mark the hinges to correspond with the holes in the doors using a permanent marker. This is necessary because the hinges are adjusted into a particular position to make the kitchen doors hang properly. If you get them mixed up you will have nothing but frustration when trying to adjust the cabinet doors.
  3. Glue any loose edges with the Elmers Glue All and allow the glue to set for twenty four hours before handling the doors.
  4. Watch this Video on How to Glue Loose MDF Door Edges

  5. Now use the wax stripper on the vinyl surface. This will remove any traces of the mold release wax that was applied by the original door manufacture and will clean all other grease and oily buildup.
  6. Lightly sand the vinyl doors with the fine sandpaper. This is done so that the paint will adhere to the surface better.
  7. Wipe the doors off with a tack cloth or several clean rags.
  8. Apply some lacquer thinner on a clean rag and wipe the doors down good again.
  9. Spray, brush or roll on the Cabinet Rescue paint. Apply as many layers as recommend by the company. Be sure to follow the manufacture’s instructions. Make sure that you use thin coats so that there will be absolutely no runs or drips marks on the doors when they are finished.
  10. Place the doors on the four by eight boards (4’x 8′) that you set up on the saw horses in your garage to dry.

If you plan on painting both sides of the vinyl kitchen doors allow sufficient drying time for the first side that you paint. Obviously, you should paint the backside of the cupboard doors first.

Painting Vinyl Cabinets

If you are painting the cupboards that the vinyl cabinet doors go on follow these steps:

  • Clean the cupboards surfaces with lacquer thinner that you plan on painting.
  • Fill any blemishes with Bondo or wood filler
  • Lightly sand all areas with the fine sand paper.
  • Paint the cupboards according to the Cabinet Rescue painting instructions.

Once you have completed painting the vinyl Thermofoil doors and cabinet surfaces install the hinges back into their corresponding positions. Then, hang the doors back on the kitchen cabinets. Take a good look at how the doors are lining up and adjust the kitchen cabinet doors if necessary. Install the cabinet door handles or knobs. The vinyl cabinet paint will have your routine maintenance instructions on the can. Now, enjoy your new kitchen.

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