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Painting laminate cabinets.

1543 Views 7 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  jilljohnson
Please tell me what works on old laminate cabinets. There’s got to be something. I’ve tried oil primer, extreme bond latex, etc maybe there’s something someone’s tried that i haven’t. There’s got to be something.

My next attempt will be oil extreme bond.
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What type of laminate? it's next to impossible to get any type of paint coating to adhere long term to formica.
All i know is it’s like from the 60’s. It might be melamine I’m not sure. If heard it’s actually got wax in it explaining its huge resistance to adhesives. But i have to wonder how does the wax not eventually dissipate. Seems like a great surface however for what it’s purposes for. In fact I’ll probably find a paint finish to be inferior but i just don’t want to throw away perfectly good functioning doors just because paint won’t stick.
I would think the first two steps would be a thorough cleaning and degreasing followed by a scuff sand. If there is wax, it has to be removed.
Not a painter nor ever tried painting laminate. What I saw before would scratch off with finger nail.

Maybe? Self etching primers. Epoxy primers. Search for those and see what the reviews are. Search further about painting laminates. A belt sander with #60 can scratch up the laminates quickly. Sand then clean with lacquer thinner or such to get the laminate pristine. Also 2 part can spray paints may give you hard enough finish. They are used for cars.
I’m sorry what I meant was someone said once that the actual laminate has wax impregnated into it
Carpdad thank you for your input. I usually have my belt sander loaded with 60 grit. Such a handy machine for many situations. It’ll be useful for removing the failed coating from the faces of all the cab doors. The edges are fine since i routered them and exposed the “meat” of the door. After removing the failed finish, I’ll have to smooth it with 120 on an orbital i think. Good cabinet grade, self-leveling finish needs a 120 grit finish or smoother or you’ll see tiny scratch marks in my experience.

I’m encouraged by the 2 part epoxy idea as well as the etching primer. It would be nice to know for sure what sticks without buying more product but at least i have some ideas. I still think I’ll try oil based extreme bond from sherwin Williams since this is where i typically go anyway and it’ll be nice to know if this is a solution as well. :)
I'm not sure if you've already started this project, but I had great success painting over some very ugly laminate kitchen cabinets circa 1980's. Unfortunately, this was at a second home and I am not there right now to check exactly what I used. But that primer stuck like glue to the surface (in fact I had a tough time getting some splatters off the laminate flooring!) and a semigloss latex enamel adhered very nicely. I believe it was a BIN primer that the paint department at Home Depot recommended. From what I recall, the can stated that it was for that type of surface. I will be up there soon so let me know if you'd like me to check.
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