Dark cabinets --- bleach?

gracie01December 12, 2012

Lurker here; I have dark stained birch cabinets that I hate. Was wondering if anyone on this site has every successfully bleached their cabinets to make them lighter?

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
PRO
Sophie Wheeler

The only way that would work is to strip off every bit of the finish that covers them first. That's a LOT of work. A LOT of work. And then, MAYBE wood bleach would lighten the stain. Maybe not if it's an aniline dye. The only true way to make dark wood cabinets be a ligheter wood would be to sand out all of the old stain that's penetrated the wood. That's VERY risky, as some of the stain may have penetrated further in some areas than others.

You can always paint them. Or if you chemically strip off the old finish, you could attempt to do them in a cerused finish since they are already dark. But that doesn't traditionally work with birch. It needs an open grained wood like oak to be the most effective treatment.

If the cabinets are older, examine their construction and wear carefully before committing to such a time intensive project. Many times on older cabinets, it's not worth the effort and replacing them entirely at some future point is a better plan.

    Bookmark   December 12, 2012 at 1:56PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
CEFreeman

Not in this lifetime.
If you add your time, $$ and iffiness to it, you're better off to buy new doors.

    Bookmark   December 12, 2012 at 2:01PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
lazy_gardens

It's very time consuming, requires meticulous sanding and application of nasty chemicals, and seldom works very well.

I'd paint them.

    Bookmark   December 12, 2012 at 2:57PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Cavimum

Bleach is a corrosive material. It might permanently damage the wood, even if evidence is not visible right away.

    Bookmark   December 12, 2012 at 3:03PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
G-web joining houzz, what do you think?
Not sure how I feel about it, haven't really enjoyed...
cluelessincolorado
KitchenAid Mixer - Sea glass or azure blue
I'm having a tough time deciding between the Sea glass...
sillyk
The perfect pad for a kitchen runner!!
I use a 12' long runner in my kitchen. It is an old...
bellsmom
IKEA kitchen nearly done- so delayed
We've been extremely delayed!! The granite is going...
Chinchette
Kitchen layout help, please
Please forgive me, I am not sure if this post should...
kymberie
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™