Cabinets Or Flooring – Which to Install First?

Cabinets Or Flooring – Which to Install First?

Many people struggle with choosing which to install first: flooring or cabinets? Ultimately, the answer to this question depends on several factors such as the type of floor and your future plans for your kitchen.

Installing flooring before cabinets allows you to save time and money by not having to cut and lay material around appliances and cabinets later on. This simple step can save a considerable amount of time and money in the long run.

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Cabinets are more expensive

Cabinets are an integral part of any kitchen. Not only do they store pots and pans, utensils, food items – but cabinets also add visual interest. You can choose them in several materials like wood, vinyl and stainless steel with various styles ranging from contemporary to traditional; you may even get them custom colors and finishes!

Cabinets can be expensive. The price of your new kitchen cabinets depends on the type and features selected; custom options tend to be the most costly, though stock or semi-custom options exist as well.

Making the right materials for your cabinetry is essential. Woods like cherry, maple, oak, hickory and walnut can be stained or painted to fit with the decor. Some types of materials like veneer and laminate tend to be more cost-effective than others.

You should expect to pay more for larger or more complex cabinets, as well as those with a frameless construction. Furthermore, you may choose cabinets with additional storage features like pullouts for recycling bins and matching panels for appliances.

Additionally, you’ll have to spend more money on labor for the installation process. For instance, installing kitchen cabinetry with custom designs may cost anywhere from $200-$300 per linear foot.

Another challenge with cabinets is their difficulty to take out. To make things simpler, you’ll need to hire a professional. Additionally, you may have to shim your cabinet door which requires considerable time and effort – not to mention cost!

Before beginning any kitchen or cabinet replacement project, it’s essential to plan carefully. Making poor decisions now could prove costly in the future and may even necessitate rethinking the project altogether.

For instance, you could end up needing to reduce the size of your countertops and backsplash in order to fit around cabinets. Or, alternatively, you could need to take out the flooring beneath them in order to replace them at a later date.

Avoid these issues by installing cabinets first and laying the floor later. Doing this will eliminate the worry about damage to floors since they are hidden. Furthermore, it gives you a more defined footprint which you can use for future renovations.

Cabinets are more difficult to install

Cabinets can be more challenging to install due to their weight and size. Skilled carpenters are needed to precisely level and secure them, plus many hinges, drawer slides and doors need precise alignment for securement. Without proper installation, cabinets may warp or sag over time if not done correctly.

Maintain your cabinets’ alignment and functionality by regularly tightening or loosening their hardware with a Phillips screwdriver. Furthermore, don’t forget to clean and maintain their surfaces and finishes; this will extend their life expectancy and help them look their best.

If you need to replace knobs on your cabinets, marking the spot where they will go can help make it easier to locate holes and drill them into place. Doing this ensures your new knobs are perfectly aligned.

When installing cabinets, it’s wise to shim them as necessary so the countertops remain level and won’t sag or crack after tile installation. This is especially crucial if you plan on laying hardwood floors; their thickness will affect how high your cabinets appear in their final location.

You can shim your cabinets to cover any gaps that will occur if your flooring is too thick for your base cabinets. On the other hand, if you are installing laminate or tile floors, no shimming is needed as their thickness will already be at or above what your cabinets require.

Cabinet materials of choice typically consist of plywood and particle board, composed of thinly sliced wood slabs bonded together with adhesive to form strong, rigid cabinets. Plywood is more durable than particle board while offering an eye-catching aesthetic.

Some less-expensive cabinets are constructed from MDF (medium density fiberboard), which is less durable than plywood and won’t withstand frequent wear and tear as well. Usually, MDF is covered with either melamine or thermofoil for added aesthetic appeal.

Cabinets are more difficult to remove

Cabinets can be more challenging to remove than floors, especially if the cabinets are attached to the wall. As they can be quite heavy, it’s best to hire someone else for assistance so as not to damage your walls. If the cabinets are secured with screws, use a tool which can grip these screws and hold them in place while unscrewing the cabinet.

Cabinets are commonly constructed from plywood, which consists of layers of thinly sliced wood slabs stacked in opposite directions and joined together with adhesive. Plywood is stronger than particle board and more moisture resistant. Decorative veneer may be applied for aesthetic appeal as well.

Medium density fiberboard (MDF) cabinetry is another popular type of wood product. While not as strong or durable as plywood, MDF tends to be cheaper.

Particle board is more cost-effective than MDF, but it’s more prone to damage due to moisture and crushing. Furthermore, its heat resistance isn’t as great as MDF’s; left untreated, your board could warp and develop a mold growth issue.

Some high-quality cabinet brands offer semi-custom options that let you select your own door style, drawer fronts and other details. This can be especially advantageous if you want to make a significant change to your kitchen design.

You can replace the knobs and pulls on your existing cabinetry with new ones that match the existing hardware. To do this, fill in any old holes with wood putty before drilling them into place. If your old hardware is of a different size than what’s being replaced, use a template from a hardware installation kit to mark its location for replacement.

Many homeowners opt to install their flooring first, as they worry about cutting around cabinets and appliances later if they decide to change them. This can be an expensive and time-consuming task, so many opt to start with the cabinets so as not to create such an obstacle.

Cabinets are more difficult to replace

Cabinets come in a range of materials, such as solid wood, MDF, plywood and particleboard. Selecting the right material for your cabinets is essential if you want to achieve the look and function desired.

Plywood cabinets are often chosen due to their durability compared to MDF, as well as their capacity for heavy loads from kitchen appliances and countertops. While cheaper than MDF, plywood cabinets may be susceptible to moisture damage or crushing from heavy use.

MDF, on the other hand, is an engineered product made up of various wood particles pressed together and glued. As such, it’s more prone to breakage or difficult-to-repair blowouts at screws and joints.

Plywood cabinets are more resistant to moisture damage and easier to repair than MDF, although they may be pricier. While particleboard cabinets offer more value, plywood ones offer greater longevity and less potential for deterioration over time.

One major disadvantage of cabinets is their difficulty in replacing. Even if you’re a professional contractor, replacing cabinets necessitates special tools and an extensive understanding of construction techniques.

Maintaining cabinets that are in good condition requires a simple maintenance regimen to keep them looking their best. Be sure to regularly inspect for warping or other damage, and ensure all hinges and drawer slides are aligned correctly.

Begin by double-checking that your walls are plumb. Place a 4-foot level against the wall and note any dips or angles which need to be shimmed.

Next, use a stud finder to locate the wall studs. Mark each center stud with a pencil and extend lines up and down the wall using your carpenter’s level, making sure they are plumb.

Once your studs are marked, attach the cleat or ledger board to each stud with 2-inch screws. You may use washer-head screws if the board will be attached directly to drywall. If installing a backsplash over the cleat, be sure to cutouts in the back cabinets for connections such as sink, dishwasher and garbage disposal.


What materials are suitable for cabinets and flooring?

Cabinets can be made from a variety of materials, including wood, laminate, metal, and even glass. For flooring, wood and vinyl are two common materials. Each option has its benefits, so it’s important to consider your budget and lifestyle when making a decision.

How do I choose the best flooring for my home?

When selecting a type of flooring for your home, you’ll want to consider factors such as cost, durability, installation difficulty, aesthetics, maintenance requirements and more. Some types of flooring may be better suited to certain parts of your home depending on their characteristics. It’s also important to research different options before making a final decision.

Should I install cabinets myself?

While installing cabinets yourself is possible in some cases, it’s generally recommended that you hire a professional carpenter or contractor for major projects. This will help ensure that the cabinets are properly installed and can last for years without any problems.

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