How to Install Glass Inserts into a Center-Paneled Cabinet Door

  • 5-10 hours
  • Intermediate
  • 100-500
What You'll Need
Pre-cut glass inserts
Jig saw
Retainer clips
Sand paper
Wood block
Masking tape

Changing the look of a cabinet door is an easy process that requires a few simple tools and a piece of glass. Cabinet doors with glass inserts bring a look of elegance to your kitchen. However, you will need to keep your cabinet clean as anyone will now be able to see inside. Here are a few steps to take when installing glass inserts into your center paneled cabinet door.

Step One - Remove Cabinet Door

Using your screwdriver and remove the screws in the hinges that secure the door to the cabinet face. Remove the hinge from the door as well as the other pieces of hardware. Set these aside and mark which ones come off of which door for ease of re-installing.

Step Two - Measure For Glass Insert

Mark your door for the installation of the glass insert. You can set the insert onto the door and trace the outline in pencil, or you can take measurements and transfer them to the door. You will need to remember to bring in all measurements 1/4 inch from the edge of the glass insert. For example, if your glass insert is 10 inches across your final measurement will be 9 3/4 inches.

Place masking tape on the back of the door and put your measurements on the tape. This will keep your measurements visible, but also keep you from splintering the wood when you cut out the hole.

Step Three - Drill Pilot Hole

After you have the final measurements for the outline of your glass insert marked on the door, you will need to cut it out. To help you get your cut started, drill a pilot hole in the corner of your outline.

Step Four - Cut Out Hole

Set your jig saw in the hole you just drilled into the wood. Carefully cut out the hole for the glass insert. It is alright if you do not cut right on the line. This will be taken care of in sanding.

Step Five - Sand Wood

Peel off the tape from the back of the door and sand the edges of the hole to its final dimensions. Give a light sanding to the entire back while you have the sand paper out.

Step Six - Install Glass Insert

There are two easy ways to install the glass insert into your cabinet doors. The first involves the use of retaining clips that go onto the back of your door. Set the glass insert into the hole and center it along the hole. Attach the retaining clips to the top and bottom corners. Screw into the wooden door with your screwdriver. Place two more retaining clips on each side of the glass insert and screw into the wood.

The second method is by using clear silicone caulking. Place a bead on the top and bottom corners of the hole in the door. Then apply a thin bead along the edges. Set the glass insert onto the caulking and make sure it is centered in the hole. Set something on top of the glass to let the caulking set up. Remove any excess after dried.

Step Seven - Replace Door

After the glass insert is installed, then replace the hardware and place door back on cabinets.