After years of use, kitchen cabinet doors can begin sagging and sticking, even if they were handled with care. After all, kitchen cabinets are typically opened and closed several times each day, and if every family member opens just three or four cabinets per day, this amounts to a considerable amount of wear and tear. The weight of the doors and weakening hardware sometimes cause kitchen cabinet doors to begin sagging. Even kitchen cabinets of the highest quality can become damaged, and doors can begin sagging if they are pulled down or leaned on. Fortunately they are easy to repair. Kitchen cabinet doors can also begin sticking after years of use, but with an extra pair of hands and a few simple tools and supplies, you can repair sagging or sticking cabinet doors and restore their functionality and former aligned appearance.
Locating the Source of the Sagging
More often than not, formerly straight kitchen cabinet doors begin sagging because of loose screws. Pull up on sagging cabinet doors while examining the hardware to determine the source of the sagging. It is usually the top hinge that is either loose or stripped since the top hinges usually take the most abuse. Kitchen cabinetry does not have to be replaced because of unsightly sagging and ill-fitting doors, and once the problem is located it really is very easy to repair and realign.
Check for Loose Screws in Cabinetry
If screws are discovered to be loose they might just need to be tightened to repair the sagging and correct the problem. While gently pulling up on the cabinet door, use a screwdriver of appropriate size to hand-tighten loose screws. The door must be aligned to attach the screws back into the correct position. If the door moves back out of position and begins sagging after it has been opened and closed several times the screw holes are probably stripped, but this seemingly difficult problem is also easier to repair than most people realize.
How to Repair Stripped Holes in Kitchen Cabinets
Door removal is the first step when stripped screw holes cause sagging and require repair. Once the hardware has been removed, fill the stripped holes with clear drying wood glue, and fill the hole with round toothpicks. Allow the glue to dry completely according to product label instructions. After the glue has dried, use a small saw to cut off the toothpicks, making them flush with the kitchen cabinet frame. This will provide a sturdy area in which to drill a hole and reattach the door.
Begin by drilling a small pilot hole that will make attaching the screw easy. The hole should be a fraction of the diameter of the screw to ensure it will provide a tight fit and keep the cabinet door from sagging further. With a little help from a friend or family member, hold the cabinet door with attached hardware in place, and hand-tighten the screw into the pilot hole. Reattach the other screws, and the completed repair should result in the door hanging straight.
How to Repair Kitchen Cabinet Doors that are Sticking
If kitchen cabinet doors are sticking and are becoming more and more difficult to open the hardware is not likely to blame. Sticking doors are usually a result of deteriorated pads that begin adhering to wood frames. Many are made of a rubberized material that breaks down in time, but they can be easily replaced and solve this sticky situation. Gently pull off or scrape away existing latex pads including any remaining adhesive, and replace them with felt pads or clear pads made of a material that will outlast stock pads that typically come with kitchen cabinetry.
Kitchen cabinets might also begin sticking due to a build-up of kitchen grease and grime. Approximately every six months, clean wood kitchen cabinetry from top to bottom with oil soap, water, and a soft rag. This will remove kitchen grease, grime, and stuck-on dust and anything else that will cause kitchen cabinet doors to begin sticking. Follow product label instructions for best results, and be sure to follow up with natural orange oil to keep the cabinetry moisturized and looking like new for years to come.
Jessica Ackerman writes for Wall Decor and Home Accents. Visit the store for unique metal wall sculptures.