Refacing Kitchen Cabinets: Is It Worth It?

Are you thinking about refacing your kitchen cabinets? Whether you’re looking at it as a way to save time or money, or just updating your kitchen’s appearance, refacing cabinets is not the only option, nor is it always the best choice. What do you need to know about refacing? It’s a process, and it does have some limitations.


In this article, we’ll explore the benefits of refacing kitchen cabinets vs. replacing your existing cabinets. We’ll also look at what’s involved in refinishing or resurfacing your existing cabinet doors and drawers and assessing if it’s worth the cost and effort.


What Is Cabinet Refacing?

Cabinet refacing is a cost-effective way to rehabilitate your kitchen in a matter of days. Refacing, also known as facelifting or resurfacing, involves removing the doors from existing cabinet boxes and applying new veneer or laminate surfaces that coordinate with your current kitchen decor. For example, if your kitchen cabinets are made from maple wood, you can install vanilla door fronts that add visual warmth and depth to the room.


Whether you’re renovating an entire floor of your home or want to update one component of your kitchen, refacing can give you what you need for less than replacement costs.


To understand better, cabinet refacing involves taking off your existing doors and drawer fronts, giving them a new surface with a different look, and putting the original materials back on. The main components of refacing are:


  • Removal of the cabinet doors and drawer fronts
  • Installing the new doors and drawer fronts on cabinets
  • Replacing wood components that have become rotted or damaged
  • Installation of new veneer or laminate surfaces in coordinating finishes
  • Installation of hinges, door handles, knobs, and other hardware
  • Cleaning and repairing the cabinetry to ensure optimal surface adhesion when refinishing


Cabinet refacing is a good way for homeowners to breathe new life into their existing kitchen cabinets by updating the doors and drawer fronts without replacing the entire cabinetry. If you’re looking to save money on kitchen remodeling, cabinet refacing may be your best option.


Choosing Cabinet Refacing vs. Replacing Cabinets

If you’re looking for a way to refresh your kitchen without spending a fortune on a new remodel, cabinet refacing is definitely an option. You will save money since you are not replacing all of the cabinetry. If your cabinets are in good shape except for their appearance, refacing may be the only option to update them without incurring new costs for professional installation.


If you’re looking at this as a way to cut costs, keep in mind that refacing has its limitations. It can’t correct major structural issues and doesn’t offer the opportunity to modernize your kitchen by adding additional cabinets or appliances, such as an island or a dishwasher.


Cabinet refacing is often a good choice for homeowners who want to refurbish their existing cabinets without spending too much money on remodeling. It’s also a great way to update the look of your kitchen without costly installation fees.


On the other hand, replacing cabinets involves a more in-depth process involving taking out the entire cabinet box and replacing it with a new one with a brand-new look. Cabinets can be replaced with new construction, where the kitchen walls are opened up to install the new cabinets, or they can be removed without opening up walls.


Consider that installing new cabinets and all other components involved in a complete remodel will be more expensive than cabinet refacing, but remember, this is a longer-lasting solution. Deciding to invest in your kitchen by replacing or refacing cabinets will come down to your budget and how much you want to do.


The Pros and Cons of Cabinet Refacing

Even though cabinet refacing can be a great way to update your kitchen without replacing the cabinets entirely, both benefits and drawbacks are. Here are some of the pros and cons.



  • It’s a much cheaper alternative than replacing your cabinets.
  • If you already like the style of your kitchen, the new doors and drawer fronts will coordinate with what is already in place without an overhaul of your existing cabinets.
  • Refacing doesn’t require any major reconstruction or remodeling to get the job done, so it’s much easier to accomplish.
  • Adds value to your home without a major renovation
  • You don’t need to hire a professional kitchen remodeling contractor.
  • You can choose from a variety of cabinet designs and color options.



  • Refacing only offers the opportunity to update the doors and drawer fronts—you cannot alter cabinetry size or layout.
  • If there is any structural damage, you may not reface cabinets since it only involves the front.
  • It’s not as durable as replacing cabinets, so it may have to be refaced again in the future.
  • You can’t change the size or positioning of your cabinets
  • It’s not a permanent solution for kitchen renovation.
  • You may need to replace the cabinetry in a few years if it becomes too outdated.


Factors to Consider Before Deciding Whether to Reface Kitchen Cabinets 

Before you decide to reface your kitchen cabinets, keep in mind that this solution is not a long-term fix. You’ll want to think about if it’s the right option for you and other factors involved before making a final decision. Here are some of the most important things to consider:


If refacing lasts longer than remodeling

If you’re primarily concerned about the appearance of your kitchen, cabinet refacing may be an ideal solution for you. If you like the look of your current cabinets but want to update their style, this is a great way to achieve that goal without spending too much money on a remodel. Refacing your cabinets will last longer than just a quick fix.


If refacing is more affordable than replacing cabinets

Since it only involves refinishing the doors and drawer fronts, cabinet refacing doesn’t typically cost as much as replacing cabinets entirely. This means you could save money if you’re trying to stick to a strict budget and like your kitchen’s layout.


If your kitchen’s layout will remain the same

If you want to keep your cabinets in the same spot and don’t want to alter their size or configuration, cabinet refacing is an excellent option since it only changes the appearance of your kitchen without major reconstruction.


Whether you want new colors or designs in your kitchen

One of the best benefits of cabinet refacing is that you get to choose from a wide variety of color and design options to suit your style. This can be a great way to update the look of your kitchen without totally reinventing it since you’ll still get to use the cabinets you currently have.


If you like the general layout and size of your kitchen

If you want to update the look of your kitchen with a new style of cabinets, but you still like the size and layout of what you currently have, refacing is one way to achieve this goal.


Can you handle doing all the work yourself?

Unless you hire an experienced contractor who can do everything for you, cabinet refacing requires a lot of work to get done. You’ll have to hire a carpenter, buy new doors and drawer fronts, sand the old ones down, prime them, paint on the new finish, let everything dry before replacing them onto your cabinets, and make sure it looks good. Before you decide to reface your cabinets yourself, make sure you understand all the steps involved so that you can estimate how long it might take and whether it’s a project you want to handle on your own.


Can you get more for your money by doing a partial kitchen remodel?

If you have an extremely simple kitchen design, cabinet refacing may not be as beneficial as other options. If you’re looking to give your kitchen a big makeover, but with minimal work and expense, you might be better off doing a full-scale renovation of your cabinets instead of just refinishing their fronts.


Keep in mind that many different factors are involved in deciding whether refacing kitchen cabinets is suitable for you. When you’re trying to stay on a budget, this can be a great solution that will help you achieve your goal of updating the look of your kitchen without spending too much money or time.



Is refacing kitchen cabinets worth the money? The short answer is yes—if you are looking to update your kitchen without committing to a full-scale replacement of your existing cabinets, if you want the look of new cabinets but don’t want to pay the price tag or go through the process of getting brand new cabinetry installed, and if your kitchen’s layout and size don’t need to be changed. Be aware that it can be a long and serious job refacing cabinet fronts yourself, but it may save you money in the end.


Kitchen cabinet refacing is indeed an affordable alternative that won’t cost as much as a full cabinet replacement, which is why it’s a great option for homeowners who are on a limited budget but would still like to upgrade the appearance of their kitchen.


Kitchen Cabinets in Tempe, Arizona

Do you need new kitchen cabinets in Tempe, AZ? C4L Cabinetry Tempe is the best place to find high-quality, affordable kitchen cabinets in Tempe. We have a wide variety of styles and finishes that fit your budget and style preferences. You deserve a beautiful kitchen that makes cooking easier than ever before. Let us show you how easy it is by giving our team of experts a call today to get started on designing your dream kitchen!