If you are looking for an easy way to revitalize your kitchen’s aesthetic, painting your cabinets is the way to go. This project is less labor-intensive, cost-intensive, and time-consuming, too, making it a great option for any size kitchen. Many factors impact the cost of your project, including the size of your kitchen, the type of paint and primer you use, the material of your cabinets, and more.
The cost of having cabinets painted ranges from $1,300 to $2,500. The average homeowner pays $1,900 to paint the cabinets in the standard 10 x 10 kitchen with an oil-based primer and an oil-based paint. However, prices can be as low as $400 to paint the cabinets in a small kitchen with a latex primer and water-based paint or upwards of $5,000 to paint the cabinets in a large kitchen with a chalk-based paint.
|Kitchen Cabinets Painting Price|
|National average cost||$1,900|
Refacing your cabinets costs between $35 to $70 per linear foot or $5 and $10 per sq.ft. The refacing process involves replacing the doors and drawer fronts while keeping the cabinet boxes intact. This way, you can change the door color and style without completely renovating the entire structure of the cabinets. If you were just to paint them, you only get to change the color of your space. The overall cost to refurbish kitchen cabinets includes labor and materials. Whether they are scratched and damaged, or you are craving a new look for your kitchen, refacing your cabinets is a great way to revitalize your space.
On the other hand, the cost to paint kitchen cupboards ranges from $30 to $60 per linear foot or $3 to $12 per sq.ft. Painting cabinets is advantageous because the project is more cost-effective and environmentally friendly, too. This is because it eliminates the need to throw away the old ones. On the downside, you will not get to add more storage space to your original layout.
|Project||Average Cost per Sq.Ft. (Labor Included)||Average Cost per Linear Foot (Labor Included)|
|Painting||$3 - $12||$30 - $60|
|Refacing||$5 - $10||$35 - $70|
The cabinet refinishing cost per linear foot is $17 to $33, and the per sq.ft. cost is between $1 and $8. Refinishing also gives them a new look, but it will not be as flashy as a new paint job. The refinishing process involves stripping and sanding them down to return them to their natural state. This can be a bonus if your cabinets are made from high-quality materials, like solid wood, that you would want to show off. This process allows you to fix any damage to the surface itself but takes a bit longer, usually somewhere between five and seven days. Furthermore, refinishing can be a lot messier because it involves a lot of sanding.
Painting, on the other hand, covers any blemishes but will not actually fix them. It costs about $30 to $60 per linear foot to paint the cabinets and $3 to $12 per sq.ft. This process generally takes three to five days, depending on how many you have. Painting is a great option because you can choose from many color options and modernize your space. However, painted cabinets usually require more cleaning and maintenance because the paint collects dust and shows blemishes over time.
|Project||Average Cost per Sq.Ft. (Labor Included)||Cost to Paint Kitchen Cabinets per Linear Foot (Labor Included)|
|Refinishing||$1 - $8||$17 - $33|
|Painting||$3 - $12||$30 - $60|
There are a few different ways to paint your kitchen cabinets: with a brush, a brush and roller, or a sprayer. If you are getting ready to paint them, you may have asked yourself, “is it better to spray or roll kitchen cabinets?” Here is a bit more insight on the matter. While the rest of the cost guide focuses on painting with a roller and a brush, it is important to note the difference between the following:
Painting with a roller and a brush is efficient and effective. It is also the more cost-effective choice. Your contractors charge between $25 and $100 per hour, $3 to $12 per sq.ft., or $30 to $60 per linear foot. They use a roller to paint the front and back of the drawers and doors and go back over any areas with a brush to touch everything up. The brush is also helpful for any hard-to-reach spaces.
Spray painting is by far the fastest method to paint your cabinets. Spraying provides a consistent and even coat that can be applied in just seconds. However, it takes much more time to prep the area surrounding the cabinets. The spraying cost is generally more expensive, even though it takes less time. Even an entry level sprayer begins charging around $100 to $150 per hour, $5 to $15 per sq.ft., and $40 to $80 per linear foot, and it goes up from there. This is due to the equipment needed to get the job done and the extensive prep work. Plus, sprayers use about 33% more paint on average than rollers. You should also note that spray painting the lower cabinets costs more overall than the upper ones. Typically, spraying the upper cabinets costs about half as much as the bottom.
Your painter can also use just a brush to complete the job, but this takes the longest overall. Plus, it is the most likely way to leave streaks behind when painting. On the plus side, it gives you the most control over how much paint is applied to the surface and the best adhesion. This helps it stick to the surface over time without chipping, fading, or peeling. When it comes down to it, the choice to spray vs. roller kitchen cabinets paint is completely up to you and your painting contractors. The decision will depend on the size and location and your budget for the project.
|Method||Per Sq.Ft.||Per Linear Foot||Per Hour|
|Roller and Brush||$3 - $12||$30 - $60||$25 - $100|
|Spray||$5 - $15||$40 - $80||$100 - $150|
Kitchen cabinets can be made from many different materials, each requiring special instructions and materials for painting. Due to these factors, the cost to paint each of these materials also varies. The main materials used for this type of furniture include particle board, MDF, plywood, metal, and wood veneer. Depending on which type you have, you can expect to pay between $0.50 and $12.
|Material||Cost to Paint Kitchen Cabinets per Sq.Ft. (Labor Included)|
|Particle Board||$0.50 - $1|
|Plywood||$3 - $5|
|MDF||$4 - $6|
|Metal||$4 - $9|
|Wood Veneer||$4 - $10|
|Solid Wood||$5 - $12|
Typically, it costs between $0.50 and $1 per sq.ft. to paint particle board cabinets. This material consists of sawdust, resin, and woodchips, but it is not very durable. Most contractors will only use particle board for short-term structures, which means you should veer away from placing them in your kitchen. If you do have particle board, you should use an oil- or lacquer-based paint. You should not use water-based paints.
The average cost to paint plywood cabinets ranges from $3 to $5 per sq.ft. Plywood is made from thin layers of wood that have alternating grains laying perpendicular to one another. This construction makes them more resistant to the natural expansion and contraction of the wood. The best way to paint plywood surfaces is to prime, lightly sand the primer, prime again, and then paint with a non-water-based paint.
It costs between $4 and $6 per sq.ft. to paint medium-density fiberboard kitchen cabinets. This is a wood-based product that features fibers covered with thin veneers. It is naturally completely flat and ready to paint without any prep work. When painting MDF units, always avoid water-based paint. Instead, use oil-based options. Non-water-based acrylic paints and latex paints are not bad options either.
Painting metal cabinets costs between $4 and $9 per sq.ft. on average. These are generally made from either aluminum or stainless steel. These are extremely durable and have no give. They are most often used in commercial spaces, but homeowners sometimes install them, too. You will want to use an acrylic latex paint for the best coverage on metal. First, you need to use an industrial cleaner to wipe down the surfaces. Then, you will need to sand them and use a metal primer.
You can expect to pay between $4 and $10 per sq.ft. to paint wood veneer cabinets. These are usually made from cheaper wood covered in a thin layer of hardwood veneer. The best way to paint this type of surface is to clean thoroughly before applying a primer and paint. It is best to use acrylic paints on wood veneer because they are durable and easier to clean.
If you plan to paint solid wood cabinets, you can expect to pay between $5 and $12 per sq.ft. As with wood veneer, acrylic paints are the best option for hardwood cabinets, too. It is very important to clean the wood first and make sure there are no blemishes because paint makes these stand out once dry. You should also avoid water-based paints as this can cause the wood to swell.
The labor cost to paint kitchen cabinets varies depending on the level of expertise of your contractors. Your hired painters will paint kitchen drawers and cabinets throughout the space. Generally, you can expect to pay between $25 and $100 per hour. Painters can also charge per sq.ft. ($3 to $12), per linear foot ($30 to $60), or per unit ($120 to $170).
The professional kitchen cabinet painter’s cost is usually worth the services you receive. Prepping, priming, and painting kitchen cabinets can be a complicated process for which the contractor has experience. Remember, the job takes between three and five days, depending on how many of them you have. In fact, applying just one coat takes one to two days. You will always need two coats to cover the surfaces thoroughly.
Most paint jobs involve repairing any imperfections, sanding the surfaces down, selecting the right paint and primer, and applying them. These prices are for painters using a roller and a brush to complete the job. Spray painting is another good option to get the job done more quickly, but it will end up costing more overall.
Different types of paints are best used for certain materials. They also are associated with different costs and qualities. There are four main types of interior paints that can be used on cabinets: acrylic, water-based, oil-based, and chalk. Depending on which one you use, you can expect to pay between $15 and $160 per gallon.
|Type of Paint||Average Cost per Gallon (Materials Only)|
|Water-Based||$15 - $50|
|Acrylic||$15 - $50|
|Oil-Based||$20 - $60|
|Chalk||$80 - $160|
The average water-based cabinet paint costs between $15 and $50 per gallon. While they are not the preferred paint in terms of strength, they are the eco-friendlier option. Water-based paints, or latex paints, can be rolled or sprayed on with ease, making them a great choice for your cabinetry. They are usually clearer than oil-based paints and have a low amount of VOC. Furthermore, they’re less expensive. Water-based paints can cause the wood to swell if it absorbs too much water, so they should not be used on wood.
You will generally pay between $15 and $50 per gallon for acrylic paints. Acrylic paints have low to no VOCs, come in various colors and finishes, and take only a couple of hours to dry. This is incredibly useful when dealing with cabinets because you need to apply two coats for best results. It is also fairly affordable and flexible, which is helpful for larger kitchens. On the downside, it is more prone to chipping and cracking over time.
Oil-based kitchen cabinet paints generally cost between $20 and $60 per gallon. These types of paints are generally the best for this purpose because they are durable and long-lasting. On the downside, oil-based paints contain higher levels of VOCs. This can be harmful to breathe in and can leave behind a strong smell. This can be annoying when painting the base because you must keep the space well ventilated and most likely will not be able to access your kitchen while the paint is drying. They also take a much longer time to dry, which can be a pain since you need two coats of paint.
Chalk paint is one of the most expensive options on the market, ranging from $80 to $160 per gallon. It is a specially made type of flat paint that sticks to surfaces without sanding or priming. That said, you should still thoroughly clean the surface before painting. Furthermore, chalk needs to be sealed because it has a matte finish. This paint is rather thick and still dries very quickly, so your painter can get multiple coats done in one day. If your cabinets are made from heavily grained wood, chalk paints will also be great at hiding those imperfections. On the downside, it can be rather hard to get an even layer of paint on the surface. And because it is so thick, it can take away from any decorative features you may have on a mitered door.
When it comes to kitchen cabinets, there are a few good primer options. These include latex, oil-based, and shellac primer. The only one you should really avoid is adhesive primer, as this is strictly used for exterior painting jobs. While you technically can use it, it will not adhere to the surface properly like these other primers will. Plus, it has higher VOCs, which can be harmful to inhale, especially within an enclosed space. Each primer works better with specific materials. Furthermore, different primers have different overall costs per gallon. Depending on which one you choose, you can expect to pay between $15 and $80.
|Type of Primer||Average Cost per Gallon (Materials Only)|
|Latex||$15 - $60|
|Oil||$25 - $70|
|Shellac||$30 - $80|
Typically, latex-based primers cost between $15 and $60 per gallon. They are great for covering small blemishes and stains. It is a quick-drying primer with few VOCs and can be used on wood and metal surfaces, making it an ideal choice for both residential and commercial projects. Its main disadvantage is that it chips easier over time, which can be frustrating as cabinets are high-contact areas. Latex primer can be used with both latex-based and oil-based paints. However, they will not perform as well on weathered wood, so it is important to only use it on surfaces that have been thoroughly sanded.
You can usually expect to pay between $25 and $70 per gallon for oil-based primers. They are best used with oil-based paints and are even better at sealing in stains, nail heads, and knots in the wood. In fact, oil-based primers are the best option for wood cabinets because they thoroughly penetrate the wood itself rather than just sitting on top, which better prepares the surface for painting.
On average, you will pay between $30 and $80 per gallon of shellac primer. These primers are great for covering smoke or water damage and repelling moisture and mold, making them an optimal choice for your kitchen cabinets. They will work best on wood and can be used with both oil-based and latex paints. Shellac primers are among the fastest drying primers, but it involves a fairly extensive cleanup. Its very strong smell and sticky consistency require it to be brushed or rolled on rather than sprayed.
The last thing you need to choose when painting your cabinets is the finish. This will tie the entire look of your kitchen together with either a dull, matte look or a shiny reflective one. Depending on what type of finish you choose, you can expect to pay between $10 and $70 per gallon of paint.
|Type of Finish||Average Cost per Gallon (Materials Only)|
|Flat||$10 - $70|
|Eggshell||$11 - $60|
|Satin||$12 - $60|
|Semi-Gloss||$12 - $70|
|High-Gloss||$17 - $80|
Paints with a flat finish are among the most affordable, ranging from $10 to $70 per gallon. This type offers a matte finish that is almost dull and chalky. Matte finishes are great for hiding imperfections, but they are not the most recommended for cabinets. This is because they can hold dirt and dust very easily and are less convenient to clean. Since they are such a high-contact area, this can get annoying very quickly. However, some homeowners opt for a matte finish because it is non-reflective and provides a more traditional style.
Eggshell paints cost between $11 and $60 per gallon. They offer a slight sheen not found in matte paints but still have a very light luster. In fact, you can compare the finish to that of the shell of an egg. Hence, its name. Eggshell paints offer low reflectivity, making them helpful for hiding any surface imperfections.
If you plan to use a satin finish on your cabinets, you can expect to pay between $12 and $60 per gallon. Satin paints are quite similar to eggshell ones but have a slightly higher gloss. This makes them easier to clean while still retaining an almost velvety appearance. Satin finishes are resistant to scratches and scuffs, making them a good option.
Semi-gloss paints cost between $12 and $70 per gallon. These paints have a higher gloss that reflects light easily. It shows damage very easily, so it’s very important to make any repairs before painting. Semi-gloss paints are very easy to clean and maintain, so they are often preferred for cabinets.
High-gloss paints are the most expensive option on the market and typically range in price from $17 to $80 per gallon. As the name suggests, these paints have a very high sheen. Because of this, they are extremely reflective and durable. High-gloss is a decent option for cabinets, but just be aware of how reflective and shiny they are if you have a lot of them in your kitchen.
There are a variety of brands that offer kitchen cabinet paints of varying types. Each brand comes with its own advantages, drawbacks, and price ranges. Depending on which brand you choose, you can expect to pay between $20 and $75 per gallon on average. Let’s take a closer look at each.
|Brand||Average Cost per Gallon (Materials Only)|
|Benjamin Moore||$20 - $45|
|Glidden||$20 - $50|
|Behr||$25 - $55|
|Valspar||$30 - $55|
|Sherwin-Williams||$30 - $75|
On average, a gallon of Benjamin Moore cabinet paint costs between $20 and $45. Benjamin Moore is a professional company that has been in business since 1883. When painting your cabinets, you can use either Benjamin Moore’s oil-based paints or Benjamin Moore Advance, a middle-of-the-road option between oil and water-based enamels. This type of paint provides a satin finish that stands up to repeated washing over time. They also offer an Advance primer. Even if you do not use that specific primer, just be sure not to use lacquer-based primers.
A gallon of Glidden paint costs between $20 and $50. Glidden is a brand that is under the umbrella of PPG Industries. They have a variety of paint and primer options, many of which can be used specifically on cabinets. These include their satin interior latex paints and semi-gloss paints that provide a strong finish that can withstand regular wear and tear and cleaning. Glidden offers many color options for your kitchen to get the perfect look for your cabinets.
Typically, a gallon of Behr paint costs between $25 and $55. Behr Company has been one of the largest manufacturers of paints, primers, and finishes since 1947. They offer semi-gloss enamel interior cabinets and trim paints that are made specifically for your kitchen cabinets. They are durable, smooth, and resistant to moisture and mildew, making them a great choice for a kitchen. Plus, these paints are sandable and easy to clean, too.
A gallon of Sherwin-Williams paint costs between $30 and $75. The Sherwin-Williams Company was founded in 1866 and is now a global leader in the paint and coatings business. Sherwin-Williams has a variety of paints that can be used for cabinetry, including Urethane Trim Enamel, Interior Water-Based Acrylic-Alkyd, and ProClassic Waterbourne Interior Acrylic Enamel. These paints are designed to stand strong against constant moisture and scuffs.
Typically, one to two gallons of paint covers your cabinetry in an average size kitchen. When calculating how much paint you need for your project, it is important to buy enough for two full coats of paint. Three main types of cabinets can be found in a kitchen: base, pantry, and wall cabinets. It is important to know the general size of your cabinets to determine how much paint you will really need.
Base units are typically 34 to 36 in. tall and 24 to 30 in. deep. Pantry models range from 84 to 94 in. tall and 12 to 18 in. deep. Wall cabinets come in various heights, including 12, 15, 18, 30, 36, and 42 in. and can be between 12 to 18 in. deep. Even with these varying sizes, you should be covered with one or two gallons of paint. However, you may need more or less depending on the size of your kitchen. Let’s take a closer look.
|Kitchen Size||Average Linear Feet of Cabinets||Gallons of Paint Needed|
|Small||16 - 20||1|
|Standard||20 - 25||1 - 2|
|Large||25 - 35||3 - 5|
When it comes to cabinetry, you can either paint or stain them to get your desired look. Usually, staining your cabinets will be more cost-effective than painting, ranging from $2.50 to $10 per sq.ft. or $25 to $50 per linear foot. The process takes between 15 and 20 hours. Staining them gives them a more traditional style that shows off the natural look of wood. It is a more durable option than paint and will not show scratches or cracks as easily as painted cabinets. On the downside, you will not have as many options when it comes to colors.
The choice is completely up to your personal preferences. As a rule of thumb, however, you should stain higher-quality materials since staining will basically accentuate the way your cabinets already look. For example, lower-cost MDF will look much better painted than stained.
The average kitchen cabinet color change cost ranges from $5 to $17 per sq.ft., which is an extra $2 to $5 per sq.ft. compared to painting them for the first time. This translates to about $35 to $70 per linear foot. Typically, this process takes about five to seven days. When repainting, you have to factor in the cost to strip and paint kitchen cabinets. The stripping process involves removing the old paint so that you can get a fresh start. From there, your painters repair any damages, sand the surface down, and prime and repaint everything.
There are many different reasons to repaint your cabinets. The most obvious reason is your current color is worn down, peeling, or chipping away. However, you may also just want to refresh the look of your kitchen. Whatever the reason, it is best to contact a local painting professional to ensure the job gets done correctly.
Prep work alone for painting your cabinets costs between $150 and $500, depending on the scope of work that needs to be done. Before any painting begins, it is important to repair any damages to the face. To do this, your contractor removes the doors, repairs any cracks or holes, and sands them down for a smooth finish. It is possible to do these tasks on your own, but it can be very complicated and time-consuming.
If you have veneer cabinets, they will have to be stripped with a stripping gel and have a new coat applied to them. These units should never be sanded because they are too fragile. Other prep work that will be easier to do on your own includes clearing away any appliances and other kitchen items and isolating the work area. By doing this, you can still use your kitchen throughout the process. Many contractors include daily cleanup as a part of their rate so that you can move around your space freely after each day of painting.
The average cost to paint these doors ranges from $3 to $12 per sq.ft., $30 to $60 per linear foot, or $50 to $100 per door. Before any painting begins, your contractor will remove the door and any hardware to paint every part of the surface. There are many door types, including slab, panel, plain glass insert panel, mitered, and mullioned glass insert panel.
Slab cabinet doors are a type of flat panel door that does not feature any beveling. The panels can either be flat or raised. They are among the most popular options due to their unique edges. Mitered doors have more intricate designs, making them more difficult to paint should you want to use multiple colors to make that detailing stand out.
Other than that, there is not much change in the overall cost to paint between these types because the surface area does not vary. However, doors with glass panel inserts cost significantly less to paint since the glass pane takes up a great deal of the door itself. Instead of $120 to $170, you can expect to pay around $70 and $120 per cabinet.
You can choose from a wide range of colors for your space depending on the size of your space and the other colors used throughout the room. Though the decision is ultimately up to you, industry professionals have their fair share of advice. In a smaller kitchen, lightly colored cabinets make your space appear larger. The best part is you are not limited to just simple, neutral options. Light green, blues, and yellows can open up your space while providing a pop of color.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, you may want to make an exceptionally large kitchen feel a bit homier. If that’s the case, consider using darker colors like navy blue, forest greens, dark grays, and more. Not only will these colors make a statement, but they will also help make the space seem cozier. With an average-sized kitchen, you can use whatever color you please. Generally, if you have darker walls, lighter colors look better in contrast. With light walls, both light and dark cabinets look good.
Lead paint inspections generally cost between $350 and $500. If you live in a house built before 1979, there could still be lead paint in your home. On its own, lead paint is not detrimental to your health, but it can create contaminated dust that flows through the air during renovations, causing lead poisoning over time. Before you begin any sort of remodeling, it is crucial to perform a lead test. The process involves an inspector coming in with a fluorescent X-ray analyzer to detect any levels of lead in the paint and generally takes about three hours. Removing lead paint from your kitchen also incurs an extra cost.
After repainting your cabinets, you may want to go over any doors throughout your space to make sure you still have a cohesive and consistent aesthetic. Typically, this will cost between $35 and $50 per door. Your painting contractor can paint the kitchen door at the same time as your cabinets so that you can enjoy a new and improved space as quickly as possible.
Glazing kitchen cabinets generally costs between $8 and $10 per sq.ft. After painting them, you may choose to glaze them, too. You can also glaze them as they are if the existing paint is still in good shape. Glazing adds dimension and depth to the surface of the wood. It is a semi-transparent coating that simply highlights your cabinets as they are.
Typically, contractors charge in a few different ways to paint your cabinetry. They will either charge per square foot, per linear foot, per unit, or per hour. It costs between $3 to $12 per sq.ft., $30 to $60 per linear foot, $120 to $170 per unit, or $25 to $100 per hour.
It is considerably cheaper to paint your cabinets rather than replace them. In fact, painting costs about half as much as replacing them completely. Painting costs between $30 and $60 per linear foot, while replacing them costs between $100 and $400 per linear foot.
There are a few different paints from which you can choose for your kitchen cabinets, but the best options are gloss, semi-gloss, or satin. The only type of paint you should not use is a matte paint because it shows stains easily and is more difficult to clean.
Yes, you can paint over cabinets that have already been painted, but they will need to be prepared properly. Your contractor will have to make any repairs, use a sanding sponge on every part of the surface, and prime the surface before painting.
The paint on your kitchen cabinets can last anywhere from 10 to 20 years. This amount of time varies depending on extreme conditions or damages that they sustain directly.
In most cases, painting them is worth it as it is a cost-effective and simple way to revitalize your kitchen. If they are a little out of date and need a refresher, a new paint job can be the perfect solution.
Repainting will generally cost an extra $2 to $5 per sq.ft. as your painter will have to strip the existing paint on your cabinets, repair any damages, and sand them down. That said, it will generally cost between $5 and $17 per sq.ft. to repaint your cabinets.
When painted correctly, your cabinetry paint should not chip easily. The best way to ensure that it will not chip is to hire a professional painting contractor. They will properly remove all existing paint, prime, and use a high-quality paint for the new job.
Painting is a less expensive solution, but it is only a viable option if your cabinetry is outdated, not damaged. A new coat of paint can improve the durability of your cabinets but will not repair any existing issues with the cabinetry.