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New Kitchen or Reface?

Updated on April 15, 2012

Should I Replace the Kitchen or Reface it?

The age old question that we ask when it comes time to planning our kitchen makeover. Should I replace the kitchen or reface it? A lot of factors should be looked at before a decision is made to either re face or buy new. Mostly this surely will depend on budget. A new kitchen costs more than a refacing however in some cases this may be all that is required.

What Refacing Is.

Refacing is a term used when you remodel the kitchen by removing the doors, drawer fronts, framework, fillers, kick plates, counter tops, sink, faucets, valances, nobs or pulls, hinges and other "facing" components of the kitchen cabinets thus replacing with new. Generally all that is left or re used are the carcase boxes. These remain installed on the wall.

What To Look For.

To decide weather the kitchen should be replaced or refaced, take a look at the following checklist.

How Old is the Kitchen?

In some cases, if the kitchen is not that old, the damage on the facing could be minimal and can be repaired with products from the original supplier. (providing that it was manufactured by a professional) Most kitchens in older homes were built generally on the spot by the "Master Carpenter" who was involved in building the home. These are called "built in". The pros and cons of a built in kitchen is that it's probably built strong, however it's old and today most people are looking for the clean new modern look. Modular kitchens are boxes screwed to the wall. A "built in" is exactly what it says. It's built in. Each piece is custom fitted and attached to the kitchen, welded. It's not attached to the wall, it's attached to the house. Today all kitchens are being changed to the the modern looks.

Am I going to change the layout of the kitchen?

In most cases if you are planning to change the layout of the kitchen, a re face is not the way to go. Just relocating the stove and fridge will cause you to either have to replace or re figure the existing cabinets. This may become time consuming. Matching up products may be impossible because suppliers modify standard colours often. It'll be close but never perfect. In this case a consideration may be made towards a new kitchen. This way everything is the same inside and out. If you are not planning to change the layout and if the inside of the cabinets are in satisfactory condition, A refacing may be the way to go.


If anywhere within your kitchen cabinets, drawers, under the counter top, on the walls anywhere you may see mold growing, a totally new kitchen should be considered. Either way the mold should be controlled.

A Sucessful Kitchen Re-Facing.


What Is The Cost Comparison?

The price comparison of a new kitchen or refacing averages little bit more than 1/2 but well under 2/3 of the cost of replacing the existing kitchen cabinets only. The facing of the kitchen cupboards are the most time consuming part of this construction old or new. It is always suggested to hire a qualified professional for these jobs.


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