When do I add hinges and handles to newly painted kitchen cabinets??


Rejoice! Rejoice! Rejoice!

I have just completed my cabinet painting project. All 24 doors, 4 drawers and all the cabinet boxes on my own. It was quite a job but I used milk paint that needed no sanding or priming. The results are quite amazing and have given my old mobile home a new lease of life.

Now I have to put the hinges and handles on. What I would like to know is should I put them on when the cabinets doors are up or before I put them up? I know I have to make or buy a jig. I have a small electric drill and am not sure if it will be able to drill through the frames so thought I might like to add the handles horizontally at the top of the flat inset piece. Any other hints on this project?

  5 answers
  • Let the paint cure, less chances for touch ups. How warm is it by you now? I am in Zone 9 and was 42 this morning and peaked at 83 this afternoon. Can you go a few more days?

    • Sally Alter Sally Alter on Oct 16, 2018

      Hi, I forgot to click on reply and have answered your post below. Thanks so much.

  • Seth Seth on Oct 16, 2018


    Congratulations on your paint job. You mentioned a jig for the handles. Are you putting on all new hinges and handles? Did you fill the holes from the previous hardware? And what type of hinges are you planning on using?

    • See 1 previous
    • Sally Alter Sally Alter on Oct 16, 2018

      Do I make or buy a jig?

  • Sally Alter Sally Alter on Oct 16, 2018

    Thanks Naomie. In my inpatient way, I was planning on doing that project tomorrow but shall wait a little while now. Thanks. I am in S. Texas which is usually still hot in October but we have had rain for three weeks now and I had to put the heating on this morning. Do you think I should put the hinges on before hanging the doors?

  • Sally Alter Sally Alter on Oct 16, 2018

    The existing hardware was very old (1987) and ugly. It was vertically situated in the center of the inset. I removed it and filled the holes fairly well. You can only see them if you look at a certain angle. Now I am planning on using some new handles - beautiful black handles with a twist in the length. I spray painted the hinges black. I am still unsure about where to put them. I am thinking horizontally near the top of the inset piece - in the middle. I hope you can understand where I mean. Please let me know if I should put the the handles on before I hang the doors.

  • Seth Seth on Oct 17, 2018


    First you need to decide where you want the handles to go on the doors. Then, using your door handle placement jig, install the handles before mounting the doors. This will give you something to hold onto while mounting the door. I am uncertain as to what type of cabinet doors you have and how they fit your cabinet face frames based on your description. Any chance you can add pictures including one of the hinges? Also, were your old hinges the concealed Euro style hinges? It sounds like you are installing a hinge you can partially see if you are painting it. Is it and overlay type hinge or a surface mount hinge? Home Depot and Lowes sell a variety of jigs you can check out, but you might have to make your own for the doors. Check out the links below, which might help.