How to Level Cabinets for Countertop

Are you ready to install your countertop? Before you begin, it’s important to make sure your cabinets are level. Leveling the cabinet is critical to achieving the perfect fit for your countertop. Here’s how you can easily level your cabinets and ensure a successful installation.

How to Level Cabinets for Countertop

If you are looking to install a new countertop, you need to ensure the cabinets underneath it are level. That’s why it is important not just to know the basics of how to level cabinets for countertop, but also to familiarize yourself with tips and tricks on how best to do so.

Doing this will help ensure that your countertops fit perfectly into place and look beautiful when placed over them.

In this blog post, we’ll explore some of these key points in detail so that you can properly level your cabinet for a perfect fit for any countertop!

What are the Benefits of Leveling Cabinets for Countertops?

Leveling cabinets for a countertop helps to ensure the perfect fit. When cabinets are not level, it can cause the countertop to be uneven and affect how it looks. A leveled cabinet will ensure that the countertop is secure, stable, and in good condition for longer.

Additionally, when cabinets are not level, it can lead to other issues, such as water damage or cracks in the countertop. By leveling your cabinets before installing a countertop, you can help prevent any potential problems down the road.

What Will You Need?

Before you get started, make sure you have the following items:

  1. Level
  2. Hammer
  3. Nails or screws
  4. Wood shims

Once you’ve gathered all of the necessary items, you can now begin leveling your cabinet for countertop installation.

10 Easy Steps on How to Level Cabinets for Countertop

Step 1. Measure the Cabinet:

Begin by Measuring the Cabinet

Begin by measuring the cabinet depth and width using a level tool. Note any discrepancies and how much the cabinet is off. This will help you determine how much adjustments need to be made.

Step 2: Shim the Feet:

If your cabinets are too far forward or back, then you’ll want to add wood shims underneath the feet of the cabinet. To do this, use a hammer and nails or screws to secure the shim in place. Make sure to check with a level tool that all sides are even before securing it in place.

Step 3: Adjust Legs if Necessary:

If there are only small discrepancies in how to level your cabinets are, then you can adjust the legs on each side until they are at the same height. Use a wrench to loosen the legs and adjust until they are even. Be careful not to overtighten them, as this can cause the leg to become crooked.

Step 4: Adjust the Hinges:

If there are still discrepancies in how to level your cabinet, you may need to adjust the hinges. To do this, use a screwdriver and turn the screws on each hinge slightly until it is level. It may take several tries to get it right, so be patient and check with a level tool often.

Step 5: Check for Uneven Spaces:

Check for any areas that have gaps or visible spaces between them. If there are any, use wood shims to fill in these areas so that everything fits snugly together. Secure with nails or screws if necessary. If you are unable to see any differences in how to level, your cabinet is, then move on to the next step.

Step 6: Attach Countertop:

Secure the Countertop Into Place

Once the cabinet is level and all gaps have been filled in, it’s time to attach the countertop. Use screws or nails to secure the countertop into place. Don’t forget to check with a level tool one last time before you move on to the next step.

Step 7: Check for Leveling Issues:

With the attached countertop, look over your work one last time to ensure everything is level and secure. If there are any issues, use wood shims or wedges as needed until you achieve a perfectly even surface. Remember, any discrepancies can affect how well your countertop fits and how it looks overall.

Step 8: Secure Cabinet Hardware:

Once all of the leveling issues have been addressed, it’s time to secure any existing hardware on your cabinets, such as handles or pulls. You can also add any additional hardware if desired. Make sure the screws are secure and that everything is level.

Step 9: Check for Gaps:

Once all of the hardware is secured, double-check your work to make sure there are no gaps or visible spaces between the cabinet and countertop. If there are any areas that need to be filled in, use wood shims as needed until everything is flush against each other. Additionally, check with a level tool to make sure everything is even.

Use Wood Shims as Needed

Step 10: Enjoy Your New Countertop!

Congratulations! You have now successfully leveled your cabinets for countertop installation. Now it’s time to enjoy your beautiful new countertops and how perfectly they fit into place!

By following these ten simple steps, you can easily level your cabinets for countertop installation and ensure that everything is even and secure. Don’t forget to double-check with a level tool before completing each step to make sure that everything is perfect!

5 Additional Tips and Tricks

  1. Consider Installing Adjustable Legs or Risers: Installing adjustable legs or risers can help ensure that the cabinets are level and stable. This is especially useful if your existing floors have an uneven surface.
  2. Use a Carpenter’s Level: To make sure your cabinets are perfectly level, use a carpenter’s level to check each cabinet before securing it in place. Lay it on its side or pipe it across the top of the cabinets until they are as level as possible.
  3. Measure from Cabinet to Cabinet: For level cabinets for countertops, measure from one cabinet’s bottom edge to another’s with a tape measure. This will help you determine how “square” your installation is and how many adjustments may be necessary before you secure the cabinets in place.
  4. Shimming: If a cabinet isn’t level, you can use shims to raise it slightly and make sure it is properly supported. The key is to use as few shims as possible so that your countertop isn’t off balance or uneven when you are finished with the installation.
  5. Patience: With level cabinets for countertops, patience pays off! Double-check all 
Before Securing Any Screws

Measure before securing any screws or nails into place, and repeat the process until you get it right.

With enough care and attention, your kitchen will look great in no time!

5 Things You Should Avoid

  1. Don’t Over Tighten Screws: When installing level cabinets for countertops, it’s important not to tighten the screws over. Doing so will cause warping of the wood and make your cabinets more difficult to level in the long run.
  2. Don’t Forget Shims: Make sure you use shims whenever necessary, as they will help keep your cabinets stable and level while supporting your countertop.
  3. Avoid Uneven Flooring: If you are working with uneven floors, try using adjustable risers or legs before starting any installation work. This will help ensure that your cabinets remain level even on an uneven surface.
  4. Don’t Force Cabinets Into Place: While it may be tempting to force the cabinets into place, this will likely result in more problems down the line. Take your time and use the appropriate tools to ensure that everything is level and secure before continuing.
  5. Don’t Skip Steps: Skipping steps in level cabinets for countertops can cause serious damage or future issues with your installation, so make sure you follow each step along the way! Double-check every measurement and tool used throughout all ten steps of this process before moving on to the next step.

By avoiding these common mistakes, you can ensure that your level cabinets for the countertop installation process go as smoothly as possible!

Do Countertops Sit Directly on Cabinets?

No, countertops do not sit directly on cabinets. Although level cabinets for countertop installation are important preparation before any countertop installation begins, other steps still need to be taken to ensure a secure and even fit.

Next Step Involves Attaching Spacers

After the level cabinets for the countertop process is complete, the next step involves attaching spacers or shims between the cabinet frames and the bottom of the countertops. This will create a gap between the cabinet frame and the surface of the countertop, providing an extra layer of support so that your new countertops remain stable.

With these tips and tricks in mind, you can now feel confident tackling level cabinets for countertop installation! Make sure you double-check all measurements and take your time throughout the process, as a little extra effort goes a long way in creating a secure and level installation.

Do You Put Plywood Under Countertops?

Yes, putting a layer of plywood under the countertops before leveling cabinets for countertop installation is recommended. When installing level cabinets for countertops, the base should be completely flat and stable in order to ensure a secure fit and prevent any warping or shifting of the cabinets due to pressure from the weight of the countertops.

Plywood sheets are typically used between the cabinet frames and the surface of the countertops, as this creates an extra layer of support and strength that will help keep your new countertops in place.

It is important to remember that level cabinets for countertop is only one part of what goes into a successful kitchen remodel.

Be sure to follow all steps correctly when tackling level cabinets for countertops, and also make sure to use extra caution when it comes to the other components of your renovation, such as cabinet installation, countertop sealing, and so on.

Overall, level cabinets for countertops are one of the most important steps in creating a secure and level foundation for your kitchen remodel. With these tips and tricks, you can now feel confident tackling this task and making sure that your kitchen is ready for its new look!

Should Countertops Be High or Low?

The answer to this question depends on how you plan to use your countertops. Generally, level cabinets for countertops should be installed at a height that is comfortable for the user and also allows enough space underneath for storage or other tasks.

For example, if you plan on using your kitchen countertops for meal preparation or food service, you will want them installed at a comfortable height for standing and working.

Installing Them at a Slightly Lower Height

However, if you plan on using the countertops as a breakfast bar or dining area, installing them at a slightly lower height would be ideal, so they are easier to sit at and enjoy meals around.

Ultimately, how high or low level cabinets for countertops should depend on how you plan on using them, so take the time to consider how you will use your countertops before deciding on a specific height.


While level cabinets for countertops may seem like a difficult task for the average do-it-yourselfer, you can easily achieve it with the right tools and attention to detail. Furthermore, leveling your cabinets is an important step that can prevent major issues in the future.

That said, it’s not something to be taken lightly, as it could have long-term repercussions if done incorrectly.

Remember to take your time when leveling your cabinets and follow all safety protocols; in no time at all, you will have leveled countertops like a pro! Lastly, don’t ever forget to have fun with any project you take on because with every successful project comes great satisfaction.

Now that you’re ready to take on this project, get out there and level those cabinets!

Hopefully, the article on how to level cabinets for countertop has provided you with the necessary information and guidance that you need to complete this task. While leveling cabinets is not a difficult process, it does require some patience, knowledge, and precision. Good luck!

Photo of author

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.

Leave a Comment