🎨Our Entire Cabinet Painting Process🎨


Welcome!  Today we are going to walk through our exclusive process here at Exterior and Interior Painting Specialists, it only takes us THREE short days!

Our kitchen cabinet process used to take us 6 long days, but since we work in an assembly line process, use an airless sprayer, and create an onsite spray booth we are able to cut it down to a 3-day process!

Through this blog we will take you step by step with the cabinets! There will also be helpful pictures and videos along the way! Remember, if at any point you still have questions please give our office a call! 309-349-7021!

If after reading this blog you decide to take on the job yourself, please follow, step-by-step! For those of us who aren’t so handy, call today for a free estimate and see how easy it is for you! 😉



Table of Contents:

  • 1. Laying drop clothes/ DAY 1
  • 2. Removing Pieces
  • 3. Cleaning with TSP
  • 4. Taping
  • 5. HEPA Filtering System
  • 6. Sanding
  • 7. Light clean again
  • 8. Spray booth
  • 9. Setting up airless sprayer
  • 10. Spraying Primer
  • 11. First coat
  • 12. Second coat/ DAY 2
  • 13. Checking/ DAY 3
  • 14. Removing Tape & Reapplying Pieces
  • 15. Clean-Up
  • 16. Ways to decorate

Laying Drop Cloths: DAY 1

The first thing we do when we enter a new job site is lay down drop cloths to protect your floors. In parts that we will be spraying or there may be heavy paint on the ground, we use a construction like paper. We make sure to tape down this paper to make sure it doesn’t move. As long as there are no holes or tears in the paper it is completely leak proof, so if a curious dog wonders into an area and there is a water bucket or open can, it won’t leak through to the floor! In other areas we use regular cloth drop clothes. These still protect the floor since they are thick and they are laid out through the entire area we will walk through to guarantee no tracks are left behind!

If we are at a big project site, we section it into groups and work through. We paint one area then move the drop clothes and paint a different area while it dries before the second coat. This is how we save time and only take three days instead of six!

Step Two: Removing Pieces

Next, we begin taking the drawer fronts and the door fronts off the units. These will not leave the job site at all. We will talk about where they will go but for now, we will set them off to the side. As you are removing the drawer fronts and the door fronts, put a piece of tape with a number on it inside the unit right where the door would be. This will help make sure the doors go in the same spot they were and the drawers do as well.  After we take everything down we also remove all the hardware, this includes the handles, hinges, and anything else on the cabinets. Make sure to set these all to the side. Use tape to keep the screws with the handles they belong too. Write the corresponding number that is on the unit and door/drawer front on the hinges and handles that go on it as well.

Step Three: Cleaning with TSP

After taking everything off the cabinet fronts we clean everything with TSP. We use TSP (Trisodium Phosphate) to break down the grease, grime, and all other things off the surface. It is a tough cleaner, so be careful and use gloves when using it, however it is safe for us to use on your cabinets. Make sure to get into the cracks, depending on the style of cabinets you have! If you don’t clean everything well the primer will not adhere right and the paint will not stick. Just like in domino’s, if one thing goes wrong, everything else tumbles down and does as well. 

Step Four: Taping

To be able to spray the units, and sand with less of a mess, we will tape off the inside of the units so there is no over spray. We do this in the drawer and door fronts as shown in the video below. We take plastic and drape it over all the appliances, so nothing is damaged with over spray. We also use tape and plastic to cover the sink and counter tops! We want the only thing showing to be what we are painting!

Step Five: HEPA Filter Sanding System!

Now, before we go onto a light sanding we are going to set up our HEPA filter sanding system! This is important to do before you start sanding everything! This filter system attaches to the sander and collects very small microns of dust! Sanding takes off any other layers of paint on the cabinets and makes it easier for the primer and new paint to adhere to the cabinets.

Step Six: Sanding

Now we need to sand everything. We will sand the doors and drawer fronts that we removed everything from before, and we will sand the actual units that are attached in the kitchen, living room, bathroom, or wherever the cabinets are. Make sure you really get into the corners and the cracks, but don’t sand too deep, you just want to remove and paint, finish, or sealers that were there before.

Step Seven: Light clean again

After  lightly sanding everything (Door fronts, drawer fronts, & units) we then clean them with TSP again. This will just make sure to get any extra grease or grime that may still be on there.

Step Eight: Spray Booth!

We are going to go on and set up a spray booth! Building a spray booth in the garage, spare room, or basement allows us to spray the fronts with the airless sprayer and keeping it on site! It is important to keep them on site for many reasons! If we take them off site we risk them being damaged or lost! Keeping them onsite also means we have to move them the least, keeping their environment stable will make sure it looks its best as well as helping it dry faster!

To set up the spray booth we first lay drop cloths to protect the floor, we then hang plastic from the ceiling creating an enclosed space so there is no over spray. This means we can easily get every angle of whatever we are painting in the booth, without worrying about damaging anything else.

We spray the cabinets instead of roll or brush so there will not be any marks. It is important to keep up on your airless sprayer. If you do not, there can be many issues including over spraying and runs in the paint. 

Step Nine: Setting up the airless sprayer

We use an airless sprayer that goes up to 3,000 psi. You must  ALWAYS keep clean tips in an airless sprayer; this will help prevent any  over-spray and keep a constant amount of paint flowing out. If you do not change the tips often, old paint will get mixed in with the new paint and there will be issues with running, globs of dried paint will also be mixed in and will ruin your new paint if you do not keep it maintained.

Step Ten: Spraying Primer

Now it is time to do the first spray: The primer. We use Extreme Bond primer from Sherwin-Williams. It needs to be applied very thinly. You want it to basically be translucent. 

We must wait at least 4 hours before we can apply the first coat of paint. Letting the primer set in will help the paint adhere the best.

This is a great time to work on any other projects also going on in the home!

Step Eleven: First coat of paint

We then paint the first coat. The first coat doesn’t need to be very thick since we always paint two coats.  It is necessary to let it sit for at least four hour before painting the second coat, we will let it sit and dry over night.

End of Day One

Step Twelve: Second Coat / DAY 2

At the beginning of the second day we check to make sure the first coat is set and everything looks good. After applying the second coat of paint you will need to wait another at least eight hours before you can do anything. At our company we always do two coats on all of our projects.

After the second coat is painted on waiting 12 hours is a must before it will be durable enough to put everything back together. We always let them sit over night.

We take this time to work on any other projects going on in the home! 

End of Day Two

Step Thirteen: Checking / DAY 3

On this third day we will make sure everything looks good, no runs or uneven spots. 

Once we have done this and made sure everything is dry, we can begin cleaning and putting things back.

Step Fourteen: Removing Tape & Reapplying

Now we can go and start removing the blue tape we had used to closed off the inside of the cabinet units where the doors and drawers would go. After removing all of the tape from the inside of the units you can hang the doors and drawers back up where they go. Make sure they match the numbers you put on the tape and that they are all aligned and equal. 

Step Fifteen: Clean Up

Now that everything has been put back together and approved by the job lead, we will take the rest of the plastic off the counter tops and appliances, and we will pick up the drop cloths throughout the house and take the spray booth apart.

We always make sure to walk the whole area we were working in to amek sure there are no messes we made.



Ways to decorate your kitchen:

  1. The first look is just a typical repaint. Updating your kitchen with a fresh coat of paint can take your kitchen cave and turn it into an elegant hangout. Currently one of the most popular colors is a shade of grey.

2. Another way to give your kitchen its own personality is by having one of the detached sections an accent color while keeping the rest of the cabinets the same. It’s a way of having an accent without drawing too much attention away.

3. Accenting the island. Something about the center of the room being a darker color than the rest brings it all together. It gives the heart of the home its own hear

4. Having the top a lighter color and the bottom a darker color. This nice accent separates the room in a nice clean line. It brings a sophisticated feel to the room.



Today we went over our entire 3 day process at Exterior and Interior Painting Specialists! We went over every detail! They may look easy reading it but it takes three whole days! When we first started painting cabinets it took us six days! We are also one of the only local companies that completely sprays their cabinets! We spray the units and the drawers!

We also went over a few of the most popular styles to paint your kitchen cabinets! Of course you can always go with whatever style you’d like!

If you have any other questions feel free to let us know!

CALL NOW FREE QUOTES:  309-349-7021

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