Five Questions to Ask Your Cabinet Painter Before You Hire Them

November 13, 2023


So, you’ve decided to paint your kitchen! If you like your layout and door style, then all you need to do to update your kitchen is to change the colour. So, painting your kitchen is the perfect solution. Why go through all the hassle and expensive of tearing out a perfectly good set of cabinets and throwing them in the landfill when all you really need is a colour update?

Now that you’ve got your plan together, you must choose the contractor to do the job.

Here are some questions to ask your cabinet painting contractor before you hire them.

Do you spray or brush and roll the cabinets?

When painting kitchen cabinets, the goal should always be to make them look brand new, right? Brand new cabinets would never be brush and rolled, only sprayed. The only time cabinets should be sprayed is if it’s a DIY project with no access to professional equipment.

If you’re actually paying someone to paint your cabinets, you should expect a professional process. Any company promoting cabinet painting should have the appropriate spray equipment and the expertise and experience to use it.

Do you remove silicone?

Silicone is similar to caulking. It’s typically clear in colour and its purpose is to fill a gap and provide water proofing. It’s often located where the counter meets a cabinet panel – like a fridge side panel for example. Another place it’s often found is along the floor against the kick plate to prevent spilled water from spreading underneath the cabinets where you can’t access it to dry it up.

Silicone is non paintable. Any kind of paint, including water borne products or solvent based, won’t stick to silicone. It must be removed completely from any surface you’d like to paint to be able to access the surface underneath.

Removing silicone is something inexperienced contractors often don’t know to do. So, it can be a good test of experience to ask if they remove silicone.

How many kitchens do you paint per year?

Kitchen cabinet painting is special. There is heat, steam, grease, and other challenges not prominent when painting other areas of your home. There are very specific products and processes required to be able to take a used, lived in kitchen and make it look brand new again.

Therefore, kitchen cabinet painting is not something a company should do ‘on the side’. It is very different from regular brush and roll painting, or even spraying trim in a home. Your preferred contractor should have kitchen cabinet painting as part of the core business, painting multiple kitchens per month at minimum to have the systems and training in place to do a proper job.

Do you remove glass from the cabinet doors prior to painting them?

When painting kitchen cabinets, the goal should always be to make the cabinets look like they came that way. Not removing the glass means that there will be a strip of wood that the glass covers that will always be visible in the original colour. In addition, glass is often held in with silicone. So anywhere the silicone touches the inside of the door will not hold paint.

This is something many novice cabinet painters wouldn’t think to do, but a contractor who specializes in this area would consider it standard practice.

Do you work with cabinet shops to paint new cabinets?

Cabinet painting requires specialized equipment and spray machines. It also requires a properly certified spray booth to spray doors and any items that can be removed from the work site.

A cabinet maker knows the requirements of a solid kitchen cabinet finish. If cabinet makers have chosen your specific contractor, it’s likely they have the proper tools, products, and experience to execute the project professionally.


This short list will help to rule out any fly by night contractors or those experienced in painting in general, but not cabinet painting specifically. We hope asking these questions will help you to choose a contractor that will paint your kitchen in a way that is not only beautiful, but durable as well.



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