All Painted Cabinets are Damaged by Water

The painted finish on every cabinet brand is easily damaged by water. MLKD hasn’t noticed a difference in paint durability between the least expensive brands we carry to the most expensive. They are all easily damaged by ANY standing water left on the cabinetry for any significant length of time. Consumers have unrealistic expectations about the finish on their painted cabinetry. They believe that painted finish should be as durable and water resistant as the stained finishes they are used to. This is NEVER the case.

cabinet damaged from water
Water damaged MDF door

Consumer reports allow customers to review their own cabinetry which is full of unrealistic complaints. Here’s an example:

The warranty representative says I should not have used the soft side of a sponge to clean the cabinets. He says I caused damage by putting my hand in and out of the tip-out where I keep the sponges. In other words, the warranty rep is a liar or delusional.”

This review was about a cabinet brand. The cabinet rep was right, and the homeowner is the delusional one.

No customer should ever be putting a wet sponge in a tilt-out on a painted cabinet. Kitchen designers should not be selling a painted kitchen with a tilt-out in a sink base. Occasionally we have a customer that insists on this feature. We warn that when the finish on cabinets is damaged by water, no company will warranty painted cabinetry.

large white kitchen with large island and seating
Brighton Custom Cabinets

Majority of kitchens are selling painted finishes that require maintenance

An entire cabinet repair industry has sprouted up with expert refinishers that can repair/touch up kitchens inexpensively. Customers that are hard on cabinetry should be aware that painted cabinetry is easily damaged by water. MDF, HDF, and Duraform particle board cabinet doors are especially vulnerable, unlike wood painted cabinets, that are impossible to repair. Every kitchen designer is responsible for educating customers on what to expect from the materials and finishes they choose.

When consumers complain about problems that are routine in a kitchen renovation they should have expected, it’s a symptom of having worked with a less professional kitchen designer.

2020 review sign
Main Line Kitchen Design’s 2020 and 2021 Cabinet Rankings

Main Line Kitchen Design rates over 100 cabinet brands based on our professional evaluations and not on reviews by consumers.

See our cabinet rankings here. Cabinet review sites have flaws because consumers blame brands for universal cabinet properties that they aren’t aware of. Bad kitchen designers and inexperienced contractors unfortunately don’t get the negative reviews they deserve. Instead, those bad reviews are mistakenly passed on to the cabinet companies. Read this blog.

MLKD makes sure to tell customers not just about the good features of the cabinets and designs they choose, but more importantly, also about any bad features.

Make sure your designer gives you realistic evaluations you need to make the decisions that fit your needs best.

Happy Holidays and as always . . .

Bon Appetit!

Paul, Julie, Chris, Ed, Jeremy, Lauren, Mark, Juliet, and Camilla

Main Line Kitchen Design

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