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How do you choose quality prefabricated cabinets?

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Quick Answer

Choose quality prefabricated cabinets that feature a plywood cabinet box with floor and side panels that have a thickness of at least 1/2 inch and plywood shelves with a thickness of at least 3/4 inch. Cabinet drawers should feature dovetail joints, with sides and bottoms that have a thickness of at least 5/8 inch.

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Full Answer

Plywood, unlike particleboard and fiberboard, creates a stronger cabinet box to hold a variety of kitchen and bathroom items. Plywood also stands up better against moisture than particleboard and fiberboard.

Quality prefabricated cabinets should feature adjustable hinges to ensure all doors close properly after installation. The cabinet box should be held together with large grooves -- without glue or fasteners to hold panels in place -- to allow individual panels to expand and contract during seasonal temperature and humidity changes.

Typically, thicker shelves do not sag or curve over time like thinner shelves. Unlike nails, glue and staples used to construct some prefabricated cabinet drawers, dovetail joints interlock at all drawer corners to create a sturdier drawer.

In addition, one solid piece of wood should cover each cabinet and drawer, as opposed to multiple pieces of wood glued and pressed together. Imperfections, such as knots and sanding marks, must not show on cabinet and drawer faces, fronts and panels.

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