Paint oak cabinets by sanding them down, sealing the wood and using an oil- or water-based paint. You need sandpaper, wood pore filler or liquid sanding sealer, a paintbrush and oil- or water-based paint.
- Sand the oak cabinets
Use sandpaper to sand down the oak cabinets. Use a medium grade 80- to 100-grit piece of sandpaper, and then go over the surface with 150-grit sandpaper. Remove the old varnish, as well as any buildup of cleaners and polishes. Sanding gives the cabinets a rougher surface so the paint adheres more easily.
- Remove the dust
Use a vacuum or wet rag to remove any sanding dust from the cabinets.
- Seal the wood
Seal the large oak pores using either a wood pore filler paste or a liquid sanding sealer. Sealing the oak cabinets allows a smoother painting surface. For pore filler, use a putty knife to apply the paste. Apply the liquid sanding sealer with a paintbrush.
- Sand the surface again
If using pore filler paste, sand the surface again.
- Paint the cabinets
Paint the oak cabinets using oil- or water-based paint. Apply the paint with a brush, and wait for the first coat to dry before adding a second one.