How to Fix Cracks in Painted Cabinets

Do you have a set of cabinets in your home that are starting to show their age? Sometimes, no matter how well-maintained your cabinets are, cracks and chips can form over time. Fortunately, there is an easy fix for those minor damages! With some sandpaper and paint, you can cover up any flaws and make your cabinets look as good as new.

How to Fix Cracks in Painted Cabinets

In this blog post, we’ll go over the simple steps how to fix cracks in painted cabinets – so you don’t have to live with unsightly chips on your otherwise beautiful cabinetry!

Can Cracked Paint Be Repaired?

Yes, cracked paint can be repaired. The degree of repair needed will depend on the severity and size of the crack. To begin repairing a cracked cabinet, you’ll need to clean off any dirt or dust that may have collected in or around the crack. You may also want to lightly sand or buff any rough spots along the affected area.

Once this is done, use a putty knife to fill in the cracks with spackle or wood filler. These materials should be available at most hardware stores and come in various colors depending on your needs. Apply the filler evenly and make sure it is packed firmly into the crack before smoothing it out with sandpaper or a damp cloth, if necessary.

If you’re repairing a painted surface, you may need to apply more than one coat of paint over the area. Use a primer to prepare the surface for painting, and then add a few coats of your desired color. Be sure to let each coat dry thoroughly before adding another one.

Once finished, the repaired cabinet should be as good as new! Additionally, if properly prepped and sealed off, it will protect against any future cracking or chipping that may occur in the same area. With proper care and maintenance, you can keep your cabinets looking great for years to come!

Use a Primer to Prepare the Surface

10 Methods How to Fix Cracks in Painted Cabinets

1. Use a Putty Knife to Fill Small Cracks with a Wood Filler:

Start by using a putty knife to fill any small cracks with a wood filler. Make sure the texture of the wood filler is as close to the cabinets as possible. Start by applying the wood filler over any cracks, then use a putty knife to evenly spread it out.

Once you have filled all of the small cracks, allow the wood filler to dry and harden for up to 24 hours. If the wood filler does not adhere correctly, sand it down and try again. To ensure an even finish, sand the entire cabinet with fine-grit sandpaper. However, be careful not to sand any of the painted surfaces.

2. Use a Sanding Block to Sand around the Crack Lightly:

Once the crack has been filled, use a sanding block to lightly sand around the area. Use fine-grit sandpaper for this process, and make sure to move the sandpaper in a circular motion. This will help smooth out any of the excess filler that may have been left behind. Be careful not to press too hard into the crack, or else you may cause further damage.

Afterward, wipe the area off with a damp cloth to remove any of the sanding residues, ensuring that the crack is completely clean. If any of the filler has seeped out of the crack, use a putty knife to scrape it away. Make sure that all excess material is removed before you begin sanding.

3. Wipe Away Any Dust with a Damp Cloth:

Before starting the repair, make sure to wipe away any dust or debris on the cabinet surface using a damp cloth. This will ensure that the adhesive used for the repair sticks properly and no dirt is trapped underneath it.

While wiping, take care to not apply too much pressure and make sure not to get any water into the cracks. However, if any water does get in, use a dry cloth to absorb it as soon as possible. Make sure the surface is clean and dry before beginning to repair the cabinets.

4. Apply a Thin Layer of Primer to the Area:

Now that you have the crack repaired and sanded down, it’s time to apply primer. This will help ensure that the paint sticks to the repaired area and prevents further cracking from occurring down the road.

Use a brush or roller to apply a thin layer of primer directly over the crack and allow it to dry completely before continuing. If you are using a brush, be sure to use smooth, even strokes and don’t forget to get into the corners. While you are applying the primer, be sure to wear a face mask as it can produce fumes.

5. Allow the Primer to Dry Completely:

After the primer has been applied, allow it to dry for several hours. If the crack is large or deep, you may need to apply a second coat of primer. When the primer is completely dry, inspect the surface and make sure that any remaining cracks have been filled in.

While the primer is drying, you can prepare for the next step of painting your cabinets. To avoid any issues with the paint, make sure the surface is clean and free of dirt or dust. However, if you are using spray paint, it is not necessary to clean the surface.

6. Apply a Thin Layer of Paint:

Once the filler has dried, sand it with fine-grade sandpaper, then carefully apply a thin layer of paint. Use a brush or roller to spread the paint evenly and gently. You may want to use two coats of paint before applying a top coat to give your painted cabinets an even finish.

Using a Brush or Roller

Make sure you let each coat dry completely before applying the next one. When you’re done, your cabinets should look as good as new! Additionally, you may want to consider adding a protective sealant to keep your cabinets looking their best for years to come.

7. Allow the Paint to Dry Completely:

Once the cabinets have been sanded, primed and painted, allow the paint to dry completely. Depending on the type of paint used and environmental conditions, this can take anywhere from a few hours to several days. Once the paint is dry to the touch, it will be ready for use. If possible, leave painted cabinets to dry in a warm and dry place.

This will ensure that the paint has fully cured and bonds properly with the surface of the cabinet. Doing so will help to minimize any further cracking or peeling as time passes. However, it is important to note that even with proper preparation and application, cabinets may still develop cracks over time. If this happens, simply repeat the steps above in order to repair the crack and keep your cabinets looking beautiful.

8. Apply a Clear Sealer:

To protect the painted finish, apply a clear sealer. It helps keep moisture and dirt out of your cabinets, as well as blocks UV rays to prevent fading. Additionally, it creates a nonporous surface that helps hide minor cracks and prevents them from getting worse. For best results, use a high-quality water-based polyurethane sealer.

Apply it according to the instructions on the can, letting each coat dry before applying the next one. Allow at least 24 hours of drying time before using your cabinets again. With a little effort and patience, you can fix cracks in bed and painted cabinets and keep them looking like new!

Use a High-quality Water-based Polyurethane Sealer

9. Allow the Sealer to Dry Completely:

Once the sealer has been applied, allow it to dry completely. In many cases, this may take several hours or overnight before the repair is ready for use. If you are in a hurry, consider using an accelerated drying product to speed up the process.

However, make sure to read the instructions on the product and follow them carefully. Try to avoid using too much sealer, as it can prevent the repair from adhering properly to the cabinet surface. When it is completely dry, your cabinets should look like new once again. Congratulations! You have successfully repaired a crack in painted cabinets.

10. Touch-Up with Paint:

Once the sealer has dried completely, apply a light coat of paint to touch up any areas that may have been exposed or not covered during the repair process. Use a small brush and pay attention to details when doing this step. Make sure to use the same color and type of paint used on the cabinet in order to get an even finish. Allow the paint to dry completely before taking any further steps.

Apply a Light Coat of Paint


While it can sometimes be daunting to fix paint and cabinet cracks, taking the time and following the preceding step-by-step instructions will ensure you have a strong, smooth surface. Being proactive about maintenance or simple repairs, such as patching up cracked painted cabinets, is also another way to help prolong the life of your cabinets.

After all, correctly maintained cabinets can increase the value of your home. Following our guide on ‘How to Fix Cracks in Painted Cabinets’, you should now be equipped with all the knowledge you need to make your project successful. Armed with this advice on cabinet crack repair, why not get started and see for yourself just how easy and rewarding it can be?

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Adrian Green

Adrian is a woodworking hobbyist and has loved Woodworking since he was 10 years old. Back then in childhood, his father used to have a furniture shop. He used to help his dad and learned a lot from him about how to fix woodworking furniture, basic carpentry knowledge and also about how to work hard and take care of business. He enjoys woodworking as a hobby. He loves the feeling of creating something with his own hands, and the satisfaction that comes from seeing his finished products used by others.

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