Kitchen Cabinets - Are Ikea Cabinets Good? What Other Mfgs Have You Used? - Kitchen & Bath Remodeling - Page 2 - DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum

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Old 05-02-2011, 01:31 PM   #16
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Take a look at
they have ready to assemble and pre assembled both.
we bought our new cabinets there and they were less then half of what lowes wanted and are all plywood boxes and solid faceframes and doors, no particle board or MDF. We did order a sample door first tho to check quality of finish and to make sure of the color since they dont always look the same online in the photo.


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Old 05-06-2011, 03:07 PM   #17
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One of the advantages of IKEA cabinets is the quality of the hardware and the design that goes into the mechanisms. For example, having doors and shelves in base cabinets no longer makes sense because you can have large drawers which are easier to access and make much better use of available space. IKEA offers endless variations on these as well as tall pull-out units and the whole line of in-drawer accesories that are designed to work with the cabinets. The drawer units, even though only the face is wood, work extremely well and are very easy to keep clean because of the curved surface from the bottom into the sides.

I was skeptical of IKEA when we did our last kitchen renovation about five years ago but we went with them because we thought we might be moving soon. I ended up being quite surprised by how durable and well designed they are. The only issue we had was that a few doors warped a little bit but it was easy enough to return those for replacement and just put on the new doors. Since then, not a hitch. We were happy enough with them that I expected to go with IKEA for our new house and did in fact decide on them after a full review of other options.

IKEA cabinets do have a few weaknesses. First, because they are particle board they are not suitable for damp locations. This is not usually an issue but it explains for example why they are NOT recommended for bathrooms. Second, there is a decided lack of trim pieces and options for valences and the like. Basically there are the cabinets and that's it.

They have a good online planning tool that makes it pretty easy to lay out your kitchen, try different configuration and cabinet options, and then see a materials list with prices. If you want advice on designing an IKEA kitchen, check out the forums at There are a few people there who really know the stuff well and love to help people with design problems.
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Old 05-06-2011, 03:16 PM   #18
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Something I like about Ikea cabinets is how simply interchangeable they are. Buy new doors, spend 30 seconds per door to unclip the old door, put the new one on, and voila- a brand-new look.

However, I haven't used Ikea cabinets in a kitchen setting, but have used them in other places - like my office. The doors tend to be the most expensive part of the whole thing, but the cheapo faces are not very expensive. If anyone ever had to do their kitchen in phases, (i.e. don't have a lot to spend now, but can upgrade later) Ikea would be the way to go. Put up the plain cabinets and doors, then change the doors later-on, when funding permits.
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Old 05-06-2011, 05:22 PM   #19
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Personally, I would not consider the Ikea cabinets for the hangar apartment that I'm currently in the process of designing. I've looked at Ikea's website after I stumbled across this thread and from what I've been able to gather, the cabinets are laminate. Maybe they're particle board, maybe they're plywood with a veneer... Either way, I don't like it. The very least that I will accept is cabinet grade plywood. Particle board basically disintegrates if you get it wet. Hell, I've seen cases where it started to deform just from being in a very humid environment.

I do kind of like the idea that Ikea had with respect to the legs though... Of course, it just gives you one more place that you have to clean that is not all that easy to access, so you have to take that into consideration. They do sell the legs separately, so you could design your own cabinets and use their legs instead.

When I was last in the market for a home, I stumbled across this house where they had made the kitchen cabinets out of CMUs (cinder blocks) that were only a couple of inches thick (vs the normal 8x8x16 CMUs). I don't remember what they used for the actual shelves, but they had open fronts and rectangular wicker baskets that slid into each opening. The decor that they were going for was a "Texas rustic look" and with the stained concrete flooring and stained concrete Texas flag in the floor, it all fit in rather well. I have to think that one could do something similar, except with travertine cut to cover face of the CMUs and it would fit a less casual type of decor...
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Old 04-13-2012, 10:30 AM   #20
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Warning on Chinese RTA Cabinets

Before remodeling my kitchen, my old dishwasher had leaked. I still had 70s style cabinets with plywood boxes, so no harm done. But, when remodeling, I did not want to put in any pressboard cabinets, and run the risk of them soaking up water and falling apart if something similar happened.

Since I knew I wanted plywood box cabinets, and looking to save money, I checked out MEI Kitchens. Looking at their website, you'd think this would be a high level of "quality" for RTA cabinets. I ordered a sample cabinet to see what their quality is like.

The cabinet arrived packed flat. It's about 2 feet high, 1 foot wide, has a bottom cabinet door and an upper drawer. I was thinking this stuff would be just like Ikea, you put it all together and it just works right. Here's what I found out:

- Despite being packaged and protected well, there were scratches all up and down the sides of the cabinet.

- The colors and the finish itself do not match on the pieces even within the same cabinet. Meaning the finish has a slightly different "look" as far as thickness and glossiness. So if you have a row of cabinets next to each other, they will not look uniform but slightly different.

- The holes are not drilled in the exact proper locations. This is not like an IKEA cabinet where each piece will be interchangeable with another similar piece. All the holes are slightly different sizes, different depths, and slightly different locations. As a result, the pieces do not fit together exactly right, there are gaps between them, and some are out of alignment.

- There are no pre-drilled holes or even a template for mounting the drawer rails to the cabinet. As far as getting the drawer positioned (which is pretty important if it's going to function correctly), you are on your own.

- There is nothing to hold the drawer together. It's got dovetail joints and slots for all the pieces to fit together. There are a couple of screws in the side rails that keep the drawer bottom in place. But everything else is relying on the dovetail joints, which are not exactly tight and have small gaps around them.

I know what you're thinking, this wasn't a "real" cabinet but just a sample cabinet. But, this is what they are sending out as a sample to prospective customers. Do you really think their "real" cabinets will be any better than this?

Anybody thinking about ordering any of these Chinese RTA cabinets, should first get a small "sample" cabinet or even a full size cabinet, to check out the quality and see what you are getting yourself into.

The ONLY competitive edge these cabinets have is the solid plywood materials. As far as quality, ease of construction, any IKEA cabinet wins, hands down. Any American manufacturer available at Home Depot or Lowe's, wins hands down.

If you absolutely HAVE to have plywood construction, it's available from any one of these American manufacturers, for a 15%-20% higher price.

What's your time worth? $50 an hour, $100 an hour? I could anticipate spending an extra 3-4 hours fooling around with each one of these RTA cabinets, trying to figure out how it goes together, why don't things fit, how is the drawer rail supposed to be positioned, etc. All that wasted time would easily make up for the higher cost of a quality pre-assembled cabinet that doesn't suck.

The way I see it, this sample cabinet already cost me $100 plus another $200 of my time fooling around with it. Other than making sure I steer clear of the MEI Kitchen stuff, it's got negative value right now.

Personally, I went down to Home Depot, had the designer lay everything out (for free), saved a lot of money on a promotion they were having, got a free sink base, either free or very cheap delivery (don't remember).

I spent a lot more on the cabinets, but got solid plywood, great hardware, all the bells and whistles. Not to mention the peace of mind that they won't be something I will ever have to worry about, why don't these pieces fit together or why aren't these cabinets the same size, etc.

Maybe I will post a few pictures if anyone is interested.

p.s. MEI Kitchens is also using blackhat SEO techniques to spam fake reviews around the net, this kind of stuff pisses me off:

Last edited by diyremodelerpdx; 04-13-2012 at 11:53 AM.
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Old 04-13-2012, 11:11 AM   #21
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Pictures of MEI Kitchens sample cabinet

These are some detailed pictures of the MEI Kitchens sample cabinet, note the mismatched colors, badly fitting joints, etc:

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Old 04-17-2012, 10:46 AM   #22
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Kitcehn Cabinets

We are in the process of replacing our Kitchen cabinets. Purchased cabinets from DIY Warehouse. They are stunning. The quality are great. We purchased maple.

The service was fabulous. I would highly recommend them.
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Old 10-23-2012, 07:55 PM   #23
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Don't choose Diamond Cabinets: Terrible Customer Service

Originally Posted by whataboutj View Post
I am in the process of doing the planning and budgeting for a complete kitchen gut/renovation and one of the areas I am currently researching is the kitchen cabinets. I have designed the kitchens for the last two places we have lived - both were new construction and the builders used Merillat cabinets so all of my experience is with them.

I have looked at Ikea kitchen cabinets & it look as if I can get all the cabinets for the kitchen for about 50% (maybe even less) of what Merillat will cost (still waiting for all the pricing to be sent back to me). There are some differences with Ikea for sure - the heights available for the wall and tall cabinets is one, and the fact that the drawers are not all wood - just the fronts are - is the other. On the flip side from what I see they test the heck out of the cabinets for durability and they have a 25 year warranty. They also come with the soft close drawer slides & door hinges at no extra cost, on the models I would be getting. Lastly the installation system is very Ikea in that it seems super easy as long as you make sure you find the high point of your floor and ensure everything is level (then again that is the big issue with cabinets in general so......)

Has anyone else used Ikea cabinets for their kitchen? What are your thoughts. Are they durable?

Any other cabinet mfgs you would suggest to look at other than Merillat?
I ordered Diamond Cabinets which are of good quality and I'm pleased with them but it took them from July to October to replace a damage cabinet. They lost one cabinet after it was placed on back order and with the assistance of a Lowe salesman we located the lost cabinet on a shipping dock of a Trucking Co that Diamond contacts with to deliver the cabinets. Diamond never assisted in locating the cabinet and never gave me an apology for the money they cost me in delaying the completion of the kitchen which was 3 months. They want to sell the cabinets but if you have a problem they drop you like a rock! They never responded to my complaints and my letters to the parent company Master Brand were ignored.
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Old 11-05-2012, 09:02 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by DannyT View Post
Take a look at
they have ready to assemble and pre assembled both.
we bought our new cabinets there and they were less then half of what lowes wanted and are all plywood boxes and solid faceframes and doors, no particle board or MDF. We did order a sample door first tho to check quality of finish and to make sure of the color since they dont always look the same online in the photo.
I too purchased from and I gotta say it, the cabinets we have assembled are absolutely BEAUTIFUL!!! They look fantastic, and I am tickled pink! Can't wait till we are done, and I can write ya'll a great plug 4 your site.. plus, I work in media so will be commenting there as well. :-)
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Old 11-09-2012, 06:14 PM   #25
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My church bought cabinets from IKEA for a recent remodel. On a "grubby Sunday" (where parishioners work on things around the church, I had a bunch of novice church goers assemble them. The following week, two senior citizens (women!) and I installed them. The hardest part of the job was finding stuff they could do to help so I could do what I needed to do so that everything kept running smoothly.

I trimmed them out with HD molding and everyone was really happy with the result and we came in under our very limited budget.

I have to say I was impressed with the whole experience and the quality for price. It will definitely hold up to the use it receives from our flower and alter guild.

That said, I would not install it in my kitchen but that is because I have a very rowdy, hockey playing monkey who passes for a six year old boy living in my house.


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