Cabinet doors that hit wall, micro and frig when opened?

stpindellApril 12, 2009

All my doors seem to hit something when it opens and this is BEFORE my hardware is installed so I'm assuming it will get worse when that happens.

They either hit a wall next to it, hit the microwave or the refrigerator panel. What should I do?

Does anyone else have this situation or is mine unique? I wish the cabinet maker had told me this would happen when we were laying out the design.

I've read how frustrating this kitchen remodel process can be BUT it's been one thing after another!

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I'm sorry to hear of your problem. I am guessing you have full-overlay doors. I'm not suprised your cabinet maker didn't think of it - I could never get mine to understand it (that's just a small part of why we switched away from custom made). You need filler strips at the ends of the affected cabinets to space the door away from the wall. As I see it, since your cabinets are already installed, your options are limited. You could have your cabinet guy make narrower cabinets for the ends where it is a problem and then include a small (1.5" or 2") filler at the wall. I'm more than sure he will baulk at the idea, but as the maker he *should* have forseen this issue. I find it SOOO frustrating when those we trust to do something misses a detail with which they should be familiar! I would bring it to his attention so he won't repeat his mistake - or maybe he'll find a solution!


    Bookmark   April 12, 2009 at 8:53AM
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See if your cabinet maker can replace the hinges on those doors. I had a similar problem with a few of my doors that, when opened too far, hit a counter. All my cabinets had been installed with special hinges that opened beyond 90 degrees. For some cabinets, this was a great feature, but for those particular ones, it allowed them to bang the counter. Since they wouldn't open further anyway because of the obstacle, I certainly didn't need those hinges. So, my cabinet maker replaced them with other hinges that only opened up to 90 degrees and my problem was solved.

Another alternative is to get some of those little clear plastic discs that serve as bumpers/door stops. You can put those on the refrigerator panel or whatever your door is banging into and at least there won't be noise or damage to the cabinet doors when they make contact.

    Bookmark   April 12, 2009 at 9:57AM
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Trying different hinges is the winning idea... When we redid our master bath last year one cabinet against a wall had a problem opening. My cabinet maker came over with about 8 or 10 alternate hinges and just kept swapping them out til he found the one that worked the best.

    Bookmark   April 12, 2009 at 5:47PM
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I had that problem at the last house -- cabinet door hit fridge corner. I just put a tiny green felt stickie on the fridge and it was OK. I learned to look past it. Holligator, your idea of a clear rubber bumper is much better.

I would rather be able to open my cabinet door as wide as possible despite that little bumping issue, so though the limiting hinge may be a good idea for some, it would not work for me.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2009 at 8:17AM
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Our cabinet guy brought along a sheet of those little rubber bumbers, too. Although I am going to have to move the one on the fridge panel once we get hardware on, because it will be the hardware that hits instead.
I'm going to have to get used to the one on the hood, though, but I suppose it is better than dinging up the cabinet door.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2009 at 11:48AM
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Mine did that when I first got them: full overlays!! I was so pissed off because before I had standard, old fashioned overlays and that never happened. I bought those peel and stick tiny clear circles and put them in the places the doors hit. With time I adjusted to using the doors and don't really need those clear plastic stoppers but they're tiny enough that I don't really notice them so I leave them in place.

And I said the same thing to the guy from the kitchen design store. "Why didn't you tell me this???" HA

    Bookmark   April 16, 2009 at 10:28PM
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This is the one problem we had with our kitchen. The countertop guy was there to template and I noticed the cabinet door wouldn't even open 90 degrees before it hit the refridgerator panel. With the handle installed it would have been even worse! I told him to stop templating so we could figure out what to do.

This is our most used cabinet and it would have driven me crazy if it was not corrected. Luckily, the fridge was at the end of the cabinet run into the dining room and we were able to move it over 4" and order 3" spice pullouts.
Countertop guy wasn't happy and asked if I could just live with it so he wouldn't have wasted the trip out there - lol.

I really wish it was something the designer would have warned me about!

    Bookmark   April 17, 2009 at 7:30AM
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I'm going to have the same problem, both on the same wall, with my micro and fridge panel (if my cabinets ever get installed). I left room for air space around my fridge to appease my husband, but I think I'm going to use that space for at least a thin filler next to those cabinets. I'm really surprised my KD didn't mention this since he seemed on top of everything else!

Since yours are already installed, I'd do a clear bumper on the part getting hit until you can change out the hinges on the offending door.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2009 at 8:33AM
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This is a common problem and occurs because most customers would rather have the larger cabinet than a 3" smaller cabinet with a 3" filler to keep the door from banging. In a larger kitchen that 3" smaller cabinet might not mean much, but in a small kitchen, 3" can be everything. Also, customers who do their own layouts generally just want to order the cabinets and don't appreciate any suggestions for tweaking things to be more functional. So, KDs end up with door banging designs. One solution is to have a "door limiter" type of cable attachment that limits how far the door can open. Another is to change to a more restrictive hinge. Or,...the solution--that nobody wants--is to pick a 3" smaller cabinet in the design phase and use a 3" filler between the hinge side and the deeper cabinet or appliance.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2009 at 3:37PM
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Where can you buy the limited-range Euro (cup) hinges? I have this problem on either side of my range hood. If I had known about them, I would have had 3" spice pullouts on either side and smaller cabinets on the ends.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2009 at 6:15PM
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I have a problem with the wall cabinet door hitting the range hood. Full overlay doors. Since I designed the kitchen, can't blame anyone but myself. Was not something I even thought of. I just got the clear bump pads and stuck it on the side of the hood. Nobody would know it was there, unless they were scouring the kitchen for boo-boos. Only DH and I know where all the skeletons are.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2009 at 7:34PM
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I had clear bump pads on one cabinet in my last kitchen. It distressed me no end when I first put them up -- desecrating my perfect kitchen!! Then, of course, I totally forgot and never noticed them until I wiped down the cabinets.

I've got the same thing several places in my new kitchen and popped the bumpers on with no qualms. I tried to locate them in the least noticeable places -- at the top of wall cabs and the bottom of base cabinets.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2009 at 10:03PM
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Mine would need to be right at the sharp mitred corners of my range hood OR in the middle of the paneled doors!

    Bookmark   April 18, 2009 at 11:12AM
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Ajsmama...Are the cabinet doors that are hitting your hood part of a 2-door cabinet or are they each the only door on the cabinet? If the only door, then I would just switch the hinges. If part of a 2-door, then that won't work if there's no center stile. Even if there is a center stile, I don't know if you can attach hinges to it.

I don't have this problem as my doors are hinged on the opposite side of the cabinets from hood...I also find it easier to access things while prepping & cooking...all doors open so the open cabinet "faces" the middle of the kitchen. That means hinges on the left for cabinets to the left of the hood & hinges on the right for cabinets to the right of the hood. The shallower cabinets do, though, have filler b/w them and the cabinets on their hinged side. (Our cabinets next to the refrigerator & oven stack also have some filler, but could probably have used another inch or so...they don't hit unless you open the cabinets "violently".)

    Bookmark   April 19, 2009 at 10:29AM
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Thanks buehl - I'd love to limit the swing, but these hinges don't seem to adjust that way - just up/down, in/out. We do have center stiles. The cabinets are slightly different sizes (30" to left and 27" to right) so I don't know if I can just switch the doors so we don't have to bore new holes (can't hang doors upside down b/c of arch)? Guess I'll have to measure the doors themselves and see if that might work - just cover a bit more of the center stile on one than the other? I don't know anyone who could bore the "wrong" side of each door for me so I could just move the hinges. Though I guess worst case I could just order replacement doors (right side for right cabinet and left side for left) From Merillat? Seems a lot of expense b/c all I really need is to limit the opening to 90 degrees - rather buy new hinges than doors.

For now I just keep the plastic "locks" for transporting them on those 2 doors to remind myself to be gentle opening them, keep things I don't use often in them.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2009 at 10:20PM
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Maybe I'm not understanding your situation, but if you don't have knobs/pulls on the exterior of your doors (and I don't see any), then just drill holes on the other side of the door and move the hinges--the doors stay right where they are, they just have hinges on the other side. You could fill the old holes if you want.

We had to do this on one door as the installers installed it the wrong way. It took us a few weeks b/f we noticed they forgot to fill the old holes hinge holes.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2009 at 1:41AM
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My cabinets have something like 2" diameter holes for the Euro-style hinges, I'm assuming this means a special drill attachment, not just a spade bit? I wouldn't want to try to bore the holes myself (though installing the hinges is easy - I've done that on custom doors that were already bored). No way to fill that big a hole so the old holes would be visible when the door was open.

Are your hinges the old "American" style that you can actually see on the outside of the door when the door is closed (like on my china cabinet)? Not sure of the correct term.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2009 at 7:48AM
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Brainstorm! Swapping doors from cabinet to cabinet (right one on left cabinet goes to left side of right cabinet and vice versa) won't work since one cabinet is 30" and the other 27", doors different sizes. But what about switching doors from right to left on the same cabinet, so both doors are hinged in the middle of each cabinet instead of on the ends and they open back-to-back? Would that just get in the way? Wouldn't really be able to open both at the same time (not more than 90 degrees each side anyway). I'm thinking that as an added bonus, I could open the right hand door of the cabinet left of the wall more than 90 degrees. Just have to attach hinges to center stile.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2009 at 10:12PM
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Okay, maybe I'm the odd one, but this won't be the first limb I've climbed out on. After reading this thread I had to go open and close all my new cabinets just to see if this was happening in my kitchen. Low and behold there are 2 spots where doors can possibly hit something, but I'd only previously noticed ONE of them.

Here's my idea: Knobs (or handles) will make this LESS of a problem. My old cabinets were w/o hardware and had frames (like ajsmomma's photo). One simply grabbed the edge and pulled. There was nothing to hang on to and the door was "flung" open. Consequently it sometimes went as far as it could.

Now I grab a knob and HOLD ON TO IT. Often one tends to open the door with one hand, keeping that hand on the knob, reach in with the other hand, retrieve the desired object, then close the door (without letting go). In order to bang the door into the next cabinet I would have to bang my hand (which is covering the knob). Not likely to happen!

Knobs might even help with those cabinets next to the hood. Although switching the doors is a good idea too. Maybe try using the knobs first?

    Bookmark   April 20, 2009 at 11:43PM
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