Cabinet toe kick

liss519August 14, 2006


We are first time home buyers, so everything is a new experience. Our dishwasher just broke and needs to be replaced. Unfortunately, the toe kick for the kitchen cabinet is in one continuous line across in front of the sink and dishwasher. It needs to be removed in order to replace the dishwasher. There were a couple of nails that we removed trying to get it off -- no luck. It appears to be glued to the cabinet base in front of the sink.

The part of the toe kick in front of the dishwasher has some give to it, but there is a lip on the adjacent cabinet that is not allowing the toe kick to slip under.

Any ideas? We'd break the toe kick into pieces if we could but it doesn't seem to have a good access point, especially since the lip is preventing us from getting leverage. Is there a saw we could use to cut the kick plate or a way to dissolve the glue?


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I suspect that the material is either 1/8" masonite or thin plywood. Either of which can be cut with a utility knife. You will have to make multiple passes and there isn't much room, but with a new blade or two you should be pulling out the DW in no time.

    Bookmark   August 15, 2006 at 7:36PM
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A pullsaw is what you want. Companies that sell woodworking tools have several designs---Rockler's is one company. The saw works by pulling it towards the ouser instead of pushing away. That means the blades are very thin and can get in narrow spaces.

Make a cut on either side of the DW and the piece comes right out.

    Bookmark   August 15, 2006 at 11:38PM
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thanks for the suggestions...

We wound up using our power drill and several drill bits to drill multiple holes in a line along the kick plate and then snapped it off. Now if I can only get the dishwasher delivered!

    Bookmark   August 16, 2006 at 8:47AM
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Same issue as original poster, but wondering (a) whether a utility knife will effectively cut the toe kick (a thin plywood), and (b) whether the toe kick can be cut on the sides of the dishwasher only and reused (by glueing back or reconnecting in some way where the cut lines are not terribly noticeable).

    Bookmark   September 24, 2008 at 2:14PM
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Yes, Jobadee, you can reuse the toe kick. You will do better with a flush cut saw than with a utility knife. You can get a flush cut saw at Home Depot etc. for around $10.

Here is a link that might be useful: flush cut saw at Woodcraft

    Bookmark   September 28, 2008 at 11:58AM
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Thanks for your help!

    Bookmark   September 29, 2008 at 7:34AM
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