How To Insert Glass Panels In Your Kitchen Cabinet Doors

If your kitchen cabinets are looking aged, are too dark for the space, or just aren't exactly what you want in your kitchen, you have two choices – change the looks of them, or replace them. If you are a handy homeowner, you may be able to take those old kitchen cabinets and work a little magic to create cabinets with glass panels.

Remove the Cabinet Doors

Use some masking tape to number each door and the area that you are removing them from. This will take a lot of guess work out of things when the time comes to replace them. Once numbered, carefully remove the screws that hold the door onto the hinges. Put the screws in a dish or baggie so you don't lose them during the process.

Cut the Centers Out

Each door needs to have the center of them cut out. This can be a simple step if you have a router with a good tip. If your cabinets have a center panel, your job will be quite easy – just remove that center panel. If they don't have the center panel, you will have to measure, mark and carefully cut the center that you want to remove to replace with glass.

Tip: Routers and tips can be rented at your local home improvement store, so if you don't have one, you don't have to spend the money to purchase one.

Cut a Mounting Lip

Before the glass can be mounted to your cabinet doors, you will need to create a small lip where the glass can be placed flush with the rest of the wood on the doors. This step can be done with the router and a rabbet bit. Simply follow the inner edge of the cabinet door where the glass panel will be inserted with the router and you will have a straight, even lip to mount the glass panel easily.

Get the Glass

After you have all of the doors cut, and the lips are routed and ready to go, it is time to measure for the glass panels that you will be placing on them. Measure the opening from the innermost part of the lip, being as accurate as possible with the measurements. Write down the measurements and the number of the door that it was taken from.

Take the measurements to your local home improvement store or glass supplier. You will be shown a few options of glass to choose from. Pick your glass, give your measurements and go home and wait for the call that the glass has been cut and is ready for pick up.

Install the Glass

Use clear silicon caulk to run a thin bead of silicon around the lip that you had cut. Be very sparing with the caulk, as it is only being used to provide a little extra support and eliminate the rattle that can be heard from the glass panels in the cabinet doors.

Tip: Lights can be added inside your cabinets to brighten the space, or the glass can be frosted to give them a brighter look.

Door stiles and rails and mirror clips are used to hold the glass in place. Pre-drill the holes for mounting these pieces to the cabinet, putting one set of stiles and rails on each corner and one or two mirror clips on each side and the top and bottom.

This is a relatively easy project to complete, but it may be overwhelming for some. If this doesn't seem like something you can do yourself, contact your local cabinet contractor, like Artistic Kitchens LTD, and discuss the option of having it done for you, or to learn about replacing the cabinets completely.