Cost of Replacing Kitchen Cupboards
A guide to replacing your kitchen cupboards, including the costs and what the job entails.
A guide on how best to replace cupboards to give your kitchen a new and fresh look, including how much they cost to replace, what the job entails, and potential problem that could arise. As well as helping you reimage your kitchen and possibly even alter the form and position of your cupboards to utilise space.
Costs involved in replacing kitchen cupboards
New cupboards of standard sizes are available from major home improvement stores as flat-pack units. These generally come without doors and are simple boxes with legs for doors to be fitted to. You can expect to pay between £20 and £90 per unit, depending upon configuration. Doors are extra but will have standard fittings, and will cost between £20 and £60 each.
This could put the overall cost for your whole kithchen at around £1500 on average. This figure could reach up to £2500 depending quality and materials you choose, along with the overall size of your kitchen.
What replacing kitchen cupboards entails
Because kitchen units are made up of a square or rectangular carcass and a door or drawer front, or a combination of both items, they have been designed to fit together well. This means that you can try combinations of units you see fit to get the best system for you. The shell is only visible when the door is open, so if you’re trying not to upset your budget, it makes sense to choose less expensive shells combined with higher-end unit doors. Units can be set on either a series of adjustable feet to make them adaptable to changes to your flooring.
A so-called kickboard is used to cover the area between the base of the unit and the floor to prevent anything going underneath between the base and the floor and to hide the adjustable feet.
Replacing kitchen cupboards is regarded as a reasonably straightforward task since they are usually screwed together and may only have an additional line of silicone sealant, so taking them apart is often a relatively easy job. Doors are typically held onto the hinge mechanism with screws, making their removal and changing easy.
The task of fitting new or refurbished cupboards is likely to take some time. It could take up to 3 days to do it properly, and your use of the kitchen may be restricted during that time.
DIY kitchen cupboard replacement
Fitting kitchen units yourself does require a good deal of skill, to get it looking right and to make sure it lasts for many years to come. This is because kitchens have to handle heat as well as humid circumstances, and kitchens are the rooms that are often getting the hardest wear in the house. Edges of newly fitted units will need to be sealed against the effects of heat, steam, and spills using silicone sealant.
You will need to adequately measure the kitchen and plan – using either graph paper or a computer program – where each unit will go so that you can ensure that each part is going to fit where you want it, and will help you understand how the pieces are going to fit together. Keep measuring items as you erect them, to make sure that they conform to your plan.
What type of units to choose?
Replacing cupboards is a much cheaper option than replacing an entire kitchen. It can usually be done without the high degree of mess and chaos that replacing a whole kitchen can cause, making it the preferred option in many cases. By following this simple guide, you will be able to replace your kitchen cupboards with relative ease.
Kitchen units tend to be a standard size with most common width being 600mm, but standard carcasses are available in widths of 300mm, 400mm, 500mm, 800mm and 1,000mm, depending upon its intended use. Cabinets of up to 600mm usually have a single door, and sizes larger than this generally have two doors. Vertical dimensions vary, but work surfaces are usually fitted at the height of 910mm.
Specially designed corner units make good use of wasted spaces. These L-shaped units work well to create storage space while fitting the turns and edges of your kitchen area. The backs of these units are typically 900mm on both sides, while the front panels have two 300mm doors hinged so that they meet together in the centre break.
Generally, there is the option between base units with a single drawer set over a cupboard, or, as is in style at present, a unit containing only of drawers organised in a stack of three or four, which are typically fitted to 500mm or 600mm width units.
Other jobs to tackle
Once you start to remove cupboards and worktops, you may find that the walls and flooring that they cover are not in the best condition, and it is advisable to carry out any repairs before you start to refit your cupboards. Pay attention in particular to how level the floor is, as this will affect how your cabinets stand. You may want to paint the wall areas behind the cupboards as you probably won’t get the opportunity again.
You may want to take some time to move electrical sockets to new positions. This will need to be carried out by a qualified electrician and will add substantially to the price.
Here is a list of commonly asked questions regarding replacing kitchen cupboards.
Q How long will it take to fit a new kitchen?
This will depend on the size of the kitchen; the number of cupboards being replaced or refurbished. However, the removal of the old units is likely to take at least a day, any repair or upgrade work could take two to three days for painting and decorating, or up to five days for refitting electrical outlets. Fitting the new kitchen units could take up to four days, depending on the number of them and everything else that's involved with the job.
Q Can I just replace the cupboard doors?
Yes, this is an acceptable way to have a new-looking kitchen on a budget. Doors usually have a standard fitting on the hinge and can be swapped out quickly.
Q Are hinges included in the cost of new doors?
No, they will be an extra cost, though the existing hinges that you take off the old doors are likely to fit, so are reusable.
Q How should I clean my new cupboards and doors?
For general cleaning, you should use a 5% soap, 95% water (liquid soap) solution, wiped over with a damp (but not wet) cloth, before drying with a soft clean cloth. Dust with a soft cloth only, going along with the grain pattern of the wood. Don’t use rough cleaners, bleach or other chlorine-based cleaners, multipurpose cleaners, alcohol, acetone, solvent or alike products on the door as this will mark the surface.