How to Fix Peeling Laminate Kitchen Cabinet Doors

Nothing completes the look of a kitchen like pristine cabinets. Thankfully, laminate kitchen cabinet doors offer an affordable way to have incredible-looking cabinets in your kitchen for a fraction of the cost of a traditional solid wood cabinet.

Laminate kitchen cabinet doors and panels, however, do have a weakness. If you’re not careful, it’s all too easy to get wear and tear at the edges and corners. They can also shrink with age or warp with repeated exposure to heat. When these things happen, the protective barrier the laminate surface provides is compromised, and moisture can eventually cause some warping and peeling in the laminate material.

Generally speaking, if you see cracks or chipping in the laminate, there simply is no way to get it looking as new without replacing the door or panel. If you only have some peeling however, it’s usually possible to repair it and keep it looking great for a few more years.

Here’s what you’ll need to fix peeling laminate kitchen cabinet doors and panels

  • Hand scraper
  • Sandpaper
  • Utility knife
  • Waterproof adhesive, preferably in a spray
  • Heavy-duty masking tape or any durable non-marking tape
  • Drill
  • Clean rags

Optional:

  • Clamps
  • Replacement laminate

Steps to repairing or replacing your peeling laminate kitchen panels

You can do the following steps with the door or panel on, but if you can unscrew it from the cabinet, you might find that working with it can be much less awkward.

1.) If the peeling is substantial, use the utility knife and hand scraper to gently remove the laminate from the substrate. If the peeling is minor, leave the panel on.

2.) Use the sandpaper and hand scraper to remove as much of the old adhesive as you can. If you didn’t remove the panel, you might find you’ll have to work in the sandpaper very carefully to avoid splitting the laminate. This step will make it easier for the adhesive to stick to both surfaces.

3.) If you have removed the panel, spray the adhesive onto the substrate. If you didn’t remove the panel, use an applicator nozzle if available to carefully apply the glue in the gap. If you don’t have a spray adhesive, you can use an old business card to evenly apply your waterproof glue.

4.) Reattach the laminate. If you have a replacement laminate, you can use that instead of the old one. Apply gentle pressure until some glue comes out of the seams. If necessary, align the panel to the substrate.

5.) Wipe off the excess glue with your clean cloth.

6.) Use the masking tape to firmly secure the laminate in place. If you have a clamp, you can use this, though it’s not always necessary to purchase one. Be careful not to over-tighten the clamp and to use a piece of soft cloth between the clamp and the laminate to avoid cracking and marking.7.) Wait the recommended time on your adhesive’s instructions. Most waterproof adhesives set in about 24 hours, but many tradesmen will wait two days to ensure more thorough curing.

8.) Remove the tape or clamps.

9.) Scrape off any excess adhesive with your utility knife. Be careful not to nick the edges of your newly-repaired or replaced laminate.

10.) Reinstall the laminate kitchen door or panel.

11.) Step back and admire your handiwork!

Hopefully, we’ve helped you with your laminate kitchen cabinets! If you’re not sure if you can do this project yourself or if there is significant damage to the substrate that makes repairs impractical, you can also purchase brand new laminate kitchen cabinet doors from a trusted supplier.

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