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Posted by Henry in MI on February 20th, 2000 07:09 AM
In reply to More Info by Shawn on February 19th, 2000 08:29 PM [Go to top of thread]

Shawn, I have been there when you bought a house after a couple of walk-throughts and then tried to remember all the details so I know that it is tough.

If your cabinets are laminate, about all that you can do is paint them. The paint will not really hold up on the smooth laminate surface even with a good sanding but will probably last about 5 years. Consider this only as a "stopgap" and forget it if you want these cabinets to look good for a long time.

If your cabinets are wood, they can be refinished. You threw me a curve when you said that they were dark like maple. Maple is naturally lighter than oak but lets assume that they are stained a dark color. It is difficult to bleach stain out. Strippers will not remove stain and you have to bleach it. There are instructions on the board and if you search you should find them easily. With a good refinish job, it will probably take a week or 2 of evenings and weekends to do this and they should last 15 years plus before you even think about refinishing again. With cabinets, you have to take everything out of them so you don't get bleach, oxalic acid, stripper or other chemicals on the food and dishes. You will find that it is a lot easier and you get a better job if you remove the doors and drawers and do them in a shop or garage where you can work on them easily. You will also have to remove all the hardware so you get a better job. You will probably want to replace the pulls and so on to match the new finish anyway. One bit of good news is that it will not take much in the way of tools and equipment to do this. Newspaper, rags, a putty knife and foam brushes are used for most of it so put some money in the best finishes and brushs you can get for the final finish. Then take care of your good brush since you will probably have a lot of other use for it in your new house.

Good luck
Henry in MI

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