How to Paint Over Fiberboard Cabinets


Fiberboard cabinets are usually made out of what is called "MDF," or medium density fiber. This is a product created from finely ground wood fibers densely packed together and glued under steam. Fiberboard is lightweight and cuts like wood, only dustier. Since fiberboard is not made from a solid piece of wood, there is no wood grain, and the end product is very smooth and somewhat flexible. You can paint fiberboard cabinets to give them a new look if your cabinets made of fiberboard have grown dull.

Things You'll Need

  • 150-grit sandpaper
  • Short-nap paint rollers
  • Latex primer
  • Latex paint
  • Drop cloth
  • Take the cabinet apart and remove all the hardware so you can give each surface a clean finish.

  • Sand the surfaces with 150-grit sandpaper to smooth out any imperfections and to give the paint better adhesion.

  • Wipe down the cabinet with a slightly damp rag to remove any sanding dust. Let the surfaces air dry. Set the cabinet up on a drop cloth where any extra paint might fall.

  • Roll on a layer of primer paint over all the surfaces on the outside of the cabinet. Allow the primer to dry according to the directions on the can.

  • Roll latex finish paint over all the surfaces, using a short-nap roller over the smooth surface of the fiberboard. Allow the paint to dry for at least 24 hours before using.

  • Reapply the hardware and assemble the cabinet so that it is ready for use again.


  • Photo Credit Jupiterimages/BananaStock/Getty Images
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