The Best Time To Install Kitchen Hardwood Floor? 2021 Guide

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kitchen hardwood floor

Should you install kitchen hardwood floors before or after installing the cabinets?

Which one arrives sooner, floors or cabinets?

When we talk about kitchen repairs, many people question which one is better? installing the kitchen cabinets or the hardwood floors first. Usually, it is way better to place the floors before the cabinets. And there is an exception to this.

Notice that this implies that you want to do a complete repair in the kitchen both substituting the cabinets and the floors at the same time. If these plans are arranged to be done at different times because of financial reasons, this may require to be done in a different way.

And don’t forget that if cabinets will be done before the floors, it may critically restrict your flooring choices because of height problems, mainly with devices. The best thing is to think about the whole process and consult with both cabinet and flooring constructors, even if you will do it in conditions. Unless you may be regretful. I have seen various clients who did not do this, and as a consequence, they couldn’t do any of the solid hardwood or tile and rather chose a vinyl floor.

The main reason that it is better to fix the kitchen hardwood flooring before the cabinets

1. You can replace the cabinet later

Commonly, the hardwood floors will remain more than the cabinets. Cabinet styles are always changing and over time they require to be restored because of damage and cut. Solid kinds of hardwood may remain for more than 100 hardwood floor

Certainly, the color partialities may change, but the wood will usually endure through several kitchen repairs. The important thing is to have hardwood everywhere on the floor so that if you replace the footprint of the cabinets, or choose to relocate the kitchen devices, your wood floor has the ability throughout the area. This is also necessary if you decide to modify the form of your cabinets later, particularly because some reveal the hardwood beneath.

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2. More reliable on cabinets

critically, you need to avoid possible stains or scratches to your cabinets that can happen through the installation, demo, or sanding process for the floors. If it happens, you will have to fix the cabinets or you should just continue with the damages. You can have a much cleaner appearance if the floors are done at first. Here, I have suggested a full chain of issues that also includes minor damages which the cabinet constructors may cause on your floors.

3. Fitting heights

First, the cabinets must be at the standard 36″ above the floor and the kitchen devices must be at this equal height so that there won’t be problems later if you want to replace the devices or for example, you do not want your dishwasher to be stuck beneath the floor and have to cut up parts of the floor to release it.

Of course, another solution to achieve height flexibility is to use plywood under the cabinets, but this will make other problems, and won’t store much money because you still have to spend money on the plywood and you will have to spend more on the workforce both for forming the plywood and more accurate cuts on the hardwood flooring around the cabinets. By the way, usually, when I value the prices of these two choices they come out equivalent.

4. Most decent appearance

If you install the wood floors before the cabinets your place will look cleaner with the cabinets. With this method, you don’t have to be disturbed by adding quarter round to your cabinets and rather can only have accurate toe punts that suit the cabinets. The hardwood just runs beneath the cabinets.

The accurate way of ordering things when the hardwood floors are refinishing with the cabinets

Here is some suggested way of how to order events for kitchen renovation when it comes to floors and cabinets. Preshow the cabinets, preshow the floors, place the hardwood, sand them with paint plus two layers of polyurethane, place the cabinets, place their countertops, next, attach the third and last layer of poly.

kitchen hardwood floor

This will help it to be protected from small scratches that may happen throughout the rest of the kitchen hardwood floor installation. Of course, the cabinet constructors have to be accurate, and they should let sufficient time for drying before stepping on the floor and covering the floors. In my opinion, this is the perfect order, and what I have noticed is that works great while working with multiple constructors.

What happens if you have a water loss in your kitchen?

Many people have stated that it is much safer to use plywood beneath the cabinets in case you have an outpouring. They suppose that it may withdraw the need to cut up the cabinets if you have an outpouring. I don’t believe in this opinion.

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First, if you notice water beneath your cabinets, there is plywood that will absorb the whole water. Secondly, you are more receptive to having problems with the untreated plywood vs. the hardwood that is saved with poly. Besides, if you have water damage in your kitchen and it is because of a mechanical problem, this is usually included by insurance or the warranty on the kitchen device.

There is an exception about floating hardwood floors

If you want to install any kind of floating floor, it’s better to install the floor after the cabinets. Floating floors are matched together and not stuck to the kitchen hardwood floor. It is because of the transfer of the floating floors and growth and contraction.

If any part of the floor is caught beneath the heavy cabinets, it can not transfer accurately. This will make all kinds of problems including buckling, breaking, and swelling. Therefore, floors that are held or fixed have to be placed BEFORE the cabinets, and the ones that are floated have to be made AFTER the cabinets.

Some of the best gray tones for painting your cabinets

Gray is the second most famous color, and it is still increasing. Light grays are more popular, but mid and dark gray work extremely great. I think the best ones are gray cabinets with Calcutta marble or things like quartz. Plus, gray cabinets seem remarkable with dark hardwood floors.

If your kitchen is large and it has an island, think about using a light gray on the central cabinets and a darker tone, a mid o dark gray for the hardwood floor
Gray is beautiful and modern. It also seems excellent on the walls, the cabinets, and the floors. It’s common in all these three places. However, be sure not to overuse it. If you want to use a gray tone on the walls, be sure that one of those grays is notably lighter than the other ones.

As you know there are also various grays, some of them with warmer tones, and some of them with cooler tones. If you want to use gray or marble for the countertops or in other areas try the grays together to decide the best match.

Here are some of the best ones in gray tones:

Mid grays:

Light French Gray, Metropolitan, Stonington Gray, Repose Gray, Coventry

Dark grays:

Chelsea Gray, Kendall Charcoal, Gray, Software, Kendall Charcoal, Amherst Gray, Steely Gray

Light grays:

Gray Screen, Bunny Gray hardwood floor, Silverpoint, Gray Owl, Reflection

Some of the best tones of navy and blue, great for cabinets

Blue colors are comforting and fashionable, and they are becoming more and more popular. The most famous blue tones are in the navy category And this is about walls, cabinets, rugs, and other home decorations. Navy also has become a neutral shade.

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Navy is excellent as it matches best with either gold or silver hardware (although I suggest a brushed nickel one because it will never go out of style and reveals fingerprints less. It also matches best with white and gray hardwood floor

Other blue colors go well with the kitchen, particularly some lighter and more dusty blues, mainly if you want to use a white farmhouse sink.

Best color tones of navy, great for cabinets:

· Van Deusen Blue
· Newburyport Blue
· Naval
· Hale Navy
· Kensington Blue
· Dress Blues
· Honorable Blue
· Indigo
· Commodore (my favorite)

Notice that not to go too dark with the navy color in the kitchen, particularly if there is not much natural light. If you use too dark wood floor colors, it will seem like a black and it leads away from the trendy cool navy.

The most famous greige colors for painting cabinets

As you can see from its name, greige is a mixture of gray and beige. These grays are warmer ones and they are so attractive because they are neutral therefore they fit with almost every color. They have a form of attracting both warm and cool shades for a room.

Here are some popular greige colors, great for cabinets:

Agreeable Gray, Useful Gray, Analytical Gray, Mindful Gray
Revere Pewter, Ozark Shadows, Fieldstone

As all of you know, some of these greige colors are more like beige, some more like taupe, and, and, some more like gray.

Some of the most popular light and mid blues, great for cabinets:

If you want to choose a light or mid-blue color for the cabinets here are some marvelous options.

1. Mild Blue
10. Dress Blues

. Wondrous Blue
. Palatial Skies
. Celestial
. Hinting Blue
. Riviera Azure
. Commodore
. Blue Dragon
. Honorable Blue


As we said about kitchen repairs, many people ask which one is better? installing the kitchen cabinets or the hardwood floors first. Usually, it is way better to place the floors before the cabinets. And there is an exception to this.

Notice that this implies that you want to do a complete repair in the kitchen both substituting the cabinets and the floors at the same time. If these plans are arranged to be done at different times because of financial reasons, this may require to be done in a different way. So in this article, we mentioned every situation for everyone who wants to repair their kitchen. Read our other articles here.

Hardwood Area provides services and flooring installation in Thousand Oaks, Malibu, Calabasas, Camarillo, Westlake Village, Agoura Hills, Oxnard, and Ventura in a professional and quality manner.
Hardwood Area is located at The Oaks Mall, 2nd Floor, 474 West Hillcrest Drive, Thousand Oaks, CA, 91360, United States
Don’t hesitate to contact us if you need any further information or free consultation (+1 805-338-6952)

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