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Kitchen and Bathroom Cabinet Maintenance Tips

Adjust Cabinet Hardware, Pest Control, Child-Proofing, and More

© 2013 by Kelly R. Smith; all rights reserved; content may not be copied, rewritten, or republished without written permission.

Decorate your half-bath for home equity, photo courtesy Alyssa Davis

Decorate your bathroom for home equity, photo courtesy Alyssa Davis

This article was updated on 06/27/20
As a responsible homeowner, ensuring the longevity of your kitchen and bathroom cabinets is something you must be vigilant about. In this discourse, we will be elaborating on some easy-to-follow tips to keep these domestic cabinets totally secure and functional. All of these are routine DIY projects.

Given below is a brief overview of how you can keep your kitchen and bath cabinets secure and functional:

  • Child-Proof the Cabinets. No, we are not talking of the traditional locks and keys to secure the cabinets! You can lock the doors with cable ties on cabinets that are not opened very often.

    Alternatively known as zip ties, they offer many other household advantages, apart from their regular wire-management functions. For cabinet doors that are opened on a daily basis, any home improvement store such as Home Depot or Lowes carries a variety of latches/catches that are designed to keep the little ones out.

  • Avoid Dampness. Regularly wipe both the internal as well as the external walls of the cabinets with a soft, dry piece of cloth. In case your cabinets are made of steel/iron, you also need to be careful about keeping them rust-free.

  • Check the Condition of the Cabinet Door Hinges. No matter how well you look after the storage cabinets, they are bound to show some signs of wear and tear over time.

    Monitor the condition of the cabinets thoroughly, to detect any probable cracks or looseness at the hinges. If any alignment problem of crops up, most hinges and catch hardware can be easily adjusted.

    In the majority of cases, you can simply loosen the screws slightly and move the hardware horizontally or vertically where the screw passes through the slot, re-tighten the screws and check for proper action. Repeat as needed.

  • Keep Dangerous Objects Out of Reach of Children. Don’t keep sharp kitchen items and toxic cleaning supplies within easy reach of children.

    Even with child-proof latches, these things should be stored in cabinets in places which cannot be easily accessed by them. By their very nature, bathroom cabinets contain grooming and cleaning chemicals and are low enough for the little ones to access. Lock them up!

  • Do not Over-Stuff the Cabinets. Do you have a relatively spacious kitchen cabinet? If so, chances are that you cram all your necessary kitchen supplies (forcefully) into it.

    Is that a good idea? Certainly not! Every item inside the cabinets should be neatly organized, and you should be able to close the doors properly. If your doors bump up against canned goods or pots and pans and fail to close completely as designed, they will eventually work out of alignment (see the section above about adjusting hardware).

  • Use Pesticides and Chemical Disinfectants with Caution. Pests will always be able to find openings/edges through which to make an entrance. Pesticides may be used as a last resort, but keep in mind that these are some of the last things you want in contact with your food and cooking utensils.

    Why not take an organic approach? Cracks and entry points can be dusted with diatomaceous earth. Orange oil is an outstanding insecticide.

    It can be sprayed lightly on cabinet surfaces, baseboards, and other pest travel routes. Of course, being acidic, it can damage some surfaces so be sure to test an inconspicuous area first. Both of these products are available at nurseries that sell organic supplies.

  • Paint the Kitchen and Bath Cabinets. If your cabinets are painted now, re-painting them is probably the most effective and economically-viable solution.

    Wipe all surfaces down with TSP to degrease them, spackle any cracks, prime the surfaces, and apply a couple coats of paint on them. What paint sheen should you use? Slick sheens like satin, gloss, or semi-gloss are your best choices.

    This type of paint not only reflects lights and visually opens up the space, but being non-porous it is very easy to clean.

Bottom line? Even though we don't often think of it, kitchen and bathroom cabinet maintenance is something we shoulod all do periodically.

About the Author

John Smith is an experienced home improvement professional. He writes on a regular basis on Bethany real estate and a variety of domestic remodeling ideas and safety tips. Over here, he discusses some handy guidelines for keeping kitchen and bathroom cabinets secure.

Visit Kelly's profile on Pinterest.

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About the Author:

Photo of Kelly R. SmithKelly R. Smith was a commercial carpenter for 20 years before returning to night school at the University of Houston where he earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science. After working at NASA for a few years, he went on to develop software for the transportation and financial and energy trading industries. He has been writing, in one capacity or another, since he could hold a pencil. As a freelance writer now, he specializes in producing articles and blog content for a variety of clients. His personal blog is at I Can Fix Up My Home Blog where he muses on many different topics.

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