Can you relate to this? You clipped photos of your kitchen for just about forever, dreamed about what it would look like and how you would feel in your new kitchen and the joys it would bring. Now the dream is here, you planned your kitchen remodel for six months, maybe longer, waited another six weeks for delivery, watched in anticipation for another six days as the cabinets are installed. Within six seconds your beautiful cabinets receive their first ding, then another, and another. Before you know it, you have three or four doors that need to be replaced. As much as you want to see your new cabinets, it’s better to keep them wrapped up and protected until construction is near complete.
If you are lucky, sometimes a touch up kit can remedy a small ding.
Replacing doors is not as simple as you may think. First of all, if the contractor requests the replacement doors to be shipped at no charge, manufacturers may need to send the manufacturer’s representative to the job site to decide the nature of the damage and send photos back for the warranty report. Will this be a no charge replacement or will this be a site damage replacement the manufacturer will charge you? Who’s fault is it? If the damage is not the manufacturer’s fault, the cost of a new door(s) will have to be absorbed by someone and if you were not there to see who damaged your cabinets, chances are there will be some finger-pointing between the trades. If you are working with a general contractor who is watching his bottom line, his interest is to protect your cabinets. If damage occurs he will order the replacement doors as quick as possible to keep the project moving forward and deal with his trades to prevent further damage. That said, accidents happen, even with the best contractors. So what ever you can do to protect your cabinets will be the best defense.
Even worse, book matching or end graining means that if one door is damaged, chances are you will have to replace the matching drawer head or an adjacent upper or lower door on a tall cabinet to ensure book matching or end graining is not lost.
If you have contemporary high gloss lacquer cabinets, using touch up paint is only going to exacerbate matters. A touch up on a ding only acts as a magnifier to the damage.
The most notorious damage that can happen while your kitchen is under construction is damage from tool belts, ladders, and other equipment being shifted about in the space. The best defense against damage is wrapping your cabinets in foam wrap to provide a layer of defense against the inevitable. You can pick up a large roll of Polyethylene Foam from a moving store or on-line web site for about $50.00.
This is the better choice over rosin paper or painter’s plastic because it is thicker and less prone to ripping. Your cabinets will accumulate less construction dust and be better protected from damage. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.