Tips for Accurately Installing Cabinet Hardware

2 Materials
1 Hour

When you install drawer pulls and cabinet door knobs to your kitchen (or other) cabinetry you want to be sure the hardware is centered and level. It also helps if the process is repeatable for every door and drawer you have. In my case it was about 20 of each, and believe me , you want to do it as quickly and accurately as possible.

The secret......."Jigs"! The following pictures show you how to make the jigs with scrap lumber and pegboard you may have laying around.

Scrap of pegboard for accurate hole drilling

This picture shows an example of the pegboard used for the project. I attached a 1" X 1" piece of 8" long lumber to act as a 'rest' for the jig.

Here's what they look like when wood is attached to pegboard. Notice how the spacing of the wood is different on each. You want the jig to rest on the top of the drawer front and have the (two) holes line up and be exactly centered, up and down. This requires that you first know the height of the drawer face and second, the width of the drawer pulls (or where the holes are in the pulls) so that when you drill the holes in the cabinet 'fronts' the screws will come out exactly spaced to screw into the drawer pulls. I know this a little confusing but keep looking at the process and pictures.

drawer jig showing which holes to usefor dril

This is a picture of the shorter one turned over to show how I marked it up so that the 2 holes will line up exactly centered on the height of the drawer face. You will also notice I have an arrow at the top to line up with the center of the drawer width. Pegboard is a handy item to use for this but keep in mind you will only use 2 holes for the drilling guide. I will mention here that the drawer pulls I used

just happened to have their screw holes 3 inches apart to line up with the pegboard holes. Yours may not and you may have to pre-drill holes in you pegboard to accommodate another size

Two jigs for different drawer heights

Also, I had to make two of the pegboard jigs since some of the drawers fronts were taller in height. So to rehash, the jigs when completed will rest on the drawer fronts center on the width and the two holes you will be drilling in the fronts will be centered on the height of the drawer fronts

Door knob jigs

I also had cabinet doors that needed pulls or knobs, installed and wanted a way to accurately measure where to drill mounting holes. See the remaining pictures of the job in process.

Jig in place and ready to drill holes

Once you have you jig completed and marked which two pegboard holes to use for drilling, it's time to get going. Note this will work for all drawer fronts regardless of the width of the drawer, ie you will just slide it right or left ad line up with a mark you make on the center of the drawer face top. (Remember the arrow marking the center of the jig?)

Drawer pull installed

It's centered right to left, up and down, and level!


Once you've used your jig to get the holes started, you can remove and drill the rest of the way. It's just a little cumbersome trying to drill with the jig still in place

Door knob jig

Its important to make two of these door knob jigs. One for left swing and one for right swing doors. As with the drawer jig, it's important to measure exactly where the hole for the knob will be drilled and attach the inside edge of your alignment blocks, both the upper and side block so the the hole you'll be using as the 'drill hole' is the correct distance form the side and top. Note the pegboard hole I used as a drill guide is circled. That lets me drill the holes exactly at the same place on every door

Jig in place for drilling

This picture just shows how, by using this guide I can get identical knob placement on all the cabinet doors

Hardware in place

This shows all hardware installed level and centered on half of my project. Hope this helps you with your next cabinet hardware project. Feel free to contact me through Hometalk page and I'll answer as quickly as I can. I do work, but try to check in on the website as often as time allows.

Suggested materials:

  • 1" X 1" X 8" block of (any) wood   (scrap wood laying around my garage)
  • 8" width of pegboard, length will vary   (scrap, but is available at 'home center')

Frequently asked questions

Have a question about this project?

  1 question
  • Maryann Marino Maryann Marino on Feb 01, 2020

    How do u install sliding 2 botton shelves & the false drawers U have a front it looks like a draw but its closed. It has the room from under the counter top under neath??. If that makes sence . Thank U IN this matter. It's a large cabinet but I can only us bottom of it ! I want to shelves that's why I felt sliding botton top in the bottom cabinet. Because I have a fractured back it's taking to long to heal so bending kills me to reach underneath. HOPEFULLY it can b installed by my son in law ??

    Lol bad mother in law

    Thanks again I really enjoy this app.


Join the conversation

2 of 4 comments
  • Cheryl Bunny Mischen Cheryl Bunny Mischen on Feb 10, 2020

    Nothing to do with the holes, but good info though. I wanted to know what kind of backsplash that is on the wall. Thanks!

  • Richard H Richard H on Feb 22, 2020

    Travertine, I think. Not sure. I was doing for a customer.

    Thank you for checking out the post.