A Quick Guide to Choosing Cabinet Hinges

Shopping for cabinet hinges can be a daunting task, because homeowners must consider several different aspects of the hardware. Kitchen cabinet hinges come in a large variety of hardware types including partial and full wrap hinges; they are offered in a wealth of materials, such as copper and chrome; and they have many finishes, including black cabinet hinges, white hinges and more. To make the right purchase, homeowners must also take into account their existing cabinetry and kitchen décor. The following is a step by step guide to purchasing the perfect kitchen hinges.

1. Examine Your Cabinets: New cabinet hinges must fit and match your existing cabinetry, in every way. Before shopping for hinges, take some time to examine your cabinets. Do they have a face frame or are they frameless? If they are face framed, do the cabinet doors lie completely on top of the frame around the edges, or are they at a partial or full inset from the frame? These answers will affect whether you purchase partial or full wrap hinges, exposed or concealed hinges, and more. Also look at the height and weight of your cabinet doors, as this will affect the number of hinges you need to purchase. Most cabinet doors require 2 hinges, but if yours weigh over 11 lbs. each, or are higher than 43″, then you may need 3 or 4 cabinet hinges per door. Lastly, look at the overall style of your cabinets. Are they modern or traditional? Dark or light wood? This will affect the color and style hinges you select (see below), although some finishes, such as black cabinet hinges, will look great with any type of cabinetry.

2. Determine Hardware Type: If your cabinets are face framed, you should look for full wrap hinges. Full wrap hinges have plates that form around the back edge of the door or face frame, for maximum strength. For frameless cabinets, partial wrap hinges work well. Other types of hinge hardware include: self closing hinges, to prevent swinging doors; demountable hinges, for easy door removal and replacement; and face mount hinges, which do not require a hole to be drilled in the cabinet door prior to installation. Also consider whether you want exposed or concealed hinges, as this will affect the overall look of your kitchen. Concealed full wrap hinges are the most common types purchased, so you are likely to be shopping for this type of hinge. Be sure to consult an expert if you are unsure about what type of hinge hardware you should purchase.

3. Determine Hinge Material & Finish: Once you have chosen the correct hinge hardware type, it is time to move on to aesthetics. Cabinet hinges come in several different materials and finishes, so you can easily match them to your existing décor. If you have a modern style, consider silvery finishes such as nickel or chrome cabinet hinges. Chrome hinges will have a high-gloss shine that looks great against current design tastes. For more traditional looks, try warmer tones, such as copper, bronze, or brass cabinet hinges. These finishes look great in rustic, country, and traditional kitchen settings. As stated above, black cabinet hinges are a wonderful choice, as they will blend well with any existing décor, and will never go out of style. With a black finish, you can change the entire look of your kitchen several times over, without having to purchase a new set of hinges. This makes black cabinet hinges a good choice for anyone who is unsure about the future of their kitchen.

4. Choose a Trust-Worthy Brand: Hundreds of manufacturers sell kitchen cabinet hinges, so it is important to purchase your hardware from a name you can trust. For example, Amerock Hardware and Belwith Hardware are two of the leading names in cabinet hardware. Take some time to research the company or brand you select, to ensure that they produce high-quality, long-lasting cabinet hinges.

5. Purchase More Than You Need: Now that you are ready to buy your cabinet hinges, count up the number you will need, and then purchase a few extra. This way, if you receive a defective hinge, you will not have to go through the lengthy process of re-purchasing before installing your cabinetry, and you will always have a couple on hand, just in case.

This simple step-by-step guide should help you through the hinge selection process. Once you receive your kitchen cabinet hinges, consult an expert for installation assistance. Even the strongest full wrap hinge can fail if not installed properly, creating both an inconvenience and a safety hazard. Enjoy shopping for cabinet hinges and have fun creating a new look in your kitchen space.