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Cabinet Refacers: Applying the Veneer

By Karin Mangan

Applying the veneer is one of the most important steps for cabinet refacers. The veneer is the most visible part of your cabinets, and it's crucial to do this part properly. Many outlets offer small packets of veneers which are sequence matched, and thus are ideal for novice cabinet refacers.

First, strip down your kitchen cabinet. It is very important to make certain that you've properly sanded down all exposed surfaces so that the veneer has a proper support. Spend a few minutes inspecting all surfaces that are going to be covered and scrub down those you think need more attention.

After you have cleared away any unwanted dust, it is time to measure your pre-cast veneer. It is always better to leave too much than leave too little, so be generous with your cuts. Ideally, you want to leave a couple of inches along the length and an extra inch for the width. If you've bought a pre-cast veneer, there is no need to worry about matching the grain.

Apply the veneer and slowly move from top to bottom carefully peeling off the covering as you go. Although you have a pre-cast piece of veneer to work with, you must be careful to place it in the correct position. If you make a mistake here, there is a good chance you'll damage the veneer if you attempt to remove it. Finally, take a piece of wood and gently slide it across the veneer from top to bottom. This prevents any air from remaining under the veneer. If any air does remain unchecked, it will cause a bubble effect on the finished product and lead to early peeling of the top coat. Once you've double-checked the veneer, apply two or three layers of finish.

With care and precision, even novice cabinet refacers can apply veneer and create a beautiful finish.

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