Cabinet experts: finish problem on Fieldstone painted cabinet

badgergalJuly 17, 2014

Cabinet experts or other knowledgeable GWers, I would appreciate it if you could please weigh in on what you think is happening with the finish on the recently installed Fieldstone cabinetry in my DD's hall bath. (Yes, I know this is the kitchen forum so just pretend these are kitchen cabinets please)

The two cabinets below were installed in March and they were in perfect condition.

When I was in the bathroom this week I noticed some pin prick rust/brown dots on the tall linen cabinet. These very, very, tiny dots are on the frame, the styles, rails, the door panel and on the drawer fronts. It looks like the cabinet has a case of measles.
Here is a close up of the dots.

This bathroom is only used for bathing the baby. No hair spray or other product has been used in this room. No cleaning products have been applied to the cabinets. I will be going back to the cabinet dealer to show them the picture but I was hoping some on this forum might be able to give me some information on what the problem might be.

Thanks in advance.

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I assume the spots were NOT there originally? Is the room high humidity? Is the finish a water based latex? Possibly the cabinetmaker used steel wool in a finish step then used a water based latex paint, so the tiny particles of steel wool rusted? Do the spots wipe off? If so they may be mildew if there is high humidity?

    Bookmark   July 17, 2014 at 10:56AM
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Beautybutdebtfree, thanks for responding. I am quite sure the spots were not there on install. I am very detail oriented and a bit of a perfectionist. I had a adjusted the door hinges and dusted off the cabinets initially so I think I would have seen the spots.
There is a very good exhaust fan in the room and actually so far the room is not used for showering- just for bathing their baby. Absolutely no mildew or mold.
From what I understand the finish is a factory baked on finish and not water based.
The spots do not wipe off.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2014 at 11:28AM
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The first thing I would look to determine if I were the dealer or the manufacturer is customer abuse. This seems too consistent for that to be the case. I'll bet they've seen this before.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2014 at 11:37AM
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Treb, there definitly has been no customer abuse. The spots are very, very tiny. You can't see them unless you are up close to the cabinet but I am pretty sure they were not there initially. Once I saw the first ones I put my eagle eye to it and saw that the spots are in multiple places on the cabinet.
I have tried google searching but haven't come up with anything.
Any one else have any ideas what it might be?

    Bookmark   July 17, 2014 at 9:54PM
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Badgergal, I have white-painted Fieldstone cabinets in my kitchen. This should be covered by their warranty. I advise your DD contact the dealer.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2014 at 1:02AM
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I'm not saying there was customer abuse. I'm saying that's the first thing that's going to go through the mind of the dealer and manufacturer.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2014 at 7:10AM
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Are the spots raised, sunk into the finish or flush?

    Bookmark   July 18, 2014 at 12:17PM
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The spots are flush. Today, I went to the place where the cabinets were purchased but the sales person/store manager that we dealt with was on vacation so we will have to wait until next week to talk with them about it.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2014 at 10:32PM
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At Fieldstone Cabinetry, we have not seen this before, but it is difficult to determine exactly what is going on, and the cause of it, from a photo. Fieldstone Cabinetry has an excellent warranty. It sounds like you've contacted the local dealer. If you haven't, we encourage you to. That is the first step in getting this situation resolved. The dealer or the local representative should do a on-site inspection.

    Bookmark   July 31, 2014 at 1:50PM
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Jen, thanks for your reply. I have been in contact with the local supplier and she has forwarded my concern to the Manufacturers Rep. The Rep is supposed to be contacting me directly to set up a time to look at the cabinet. It has been a 4 days since I was told this so I guess I may have to call the supplier back.

As I said these spots are tiny and not noticeable on a casual glance but when I was up close to the cabinet and saw them I knew that it was not normal.

I will post back after the Rep has seen them.

    Bookmark   July 31, 2014 at 3:01PM
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The Fieldstone Rep came to look at the spots on the bathroom cabinet. He agreed that they did not look like any thing that the homeowner would have done but he had never seen that on any of their cabinets before. I informed him that I had followed the manufacturers cleaning instructions and the spots had not come off.
The rep then took a container of acetone from his bag, put a little of it on a cloth and wiped down all the spotted areas. Like magic they disappeared.
The cabinets have a tinted catalyzed conversion varnish on them and the finish was not harmed by the acetone.
I felt bad that the rep had a 90 minute ride to get to the house for such a simple fix but I certainly would never have used acetone on my own. He was very pleasant about the service call and was happy it wasn't something more serious.

So all is well :)

    Bookmark   August 10, 2014 at 12:13AM
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That's interesting. Did he have a view as to what caused the spots?

Out of interest, did you try WD 40, wonder if that would have worked as well .

    Bookmark   August 10, 2014 at 5:17AM
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