How Do You Tell If Your Cabinets Are Laminate?

How Do You Tell If Your Cabinets Are Laminate?

Cabinetry is one of the biggest investments you can make when remodeling your home. Whether preparing to sell right now or not, solid wood cabinetry gives any house that extra boost it needs for resale value. 

To get the most out of your money when buying or selling a house, it is important to understand what makes for quality cabinet materials. From solid wood to laminate and thermofoil cabinets, there are specific characteristics that you should be on the lookout for in order to choose the best materials for your home.

How Does Cabinet Material Impact Home Value?

Infographic for kitchen remodel ROI

You likely spend a good amount of time in your kitchen throughout the day, so why not make it a space that you can enjoy? Home improvement projects like adding modern finishes and cabinetry are an easy way to increase the resale value of your home.

If you're looking for a material that will last and increase your resale value, opting for premium quality cabinet materials like solid wood is the way to go. The amount, however, of value that these cabinets will add varies based on the wood species.

Laminate kitchen cabinets are often thought to not add value to your home. However, this is becoming less true as the quality of laminate surfacing technology continues to improve. 

How To Tell What Cabinets Are In A Home

There are a few characteristics to look out for when determining what type of cabinets your house has, as well. The material that makes up the cabinet can be identified by one or more distinctive features and will help you determine if it is made of solid wood, plywood, medium-density fibreboard (MDF), or another particleboard. Distinctive features include things like grain, joint construction, texture, and color. 

Laminate Cabinets

Laminate cabinets are one of the most common, budget-friendly options. There are several different types of laminates available on the market. We carry Thermofoil, which is a vinyl laminate that is heated and pressurized onto a medium density fiberboard (MDF) core. When installing thermofoil it is important to be conscious of the area, as you may need a heat shield to protect them.  While it doesn’t carry the same return on investment as solid wood, but they still offer their own value and advantages:

  • Particleboard Core: MDF is one of the most sought-after building materials at the moment. This is because MDF is very strong and budget-friendly.

  • Appearance: One of the biggest benefits of thermofoil is that it is available in a wide variety of colors and textures. From sage green to wood grain, thermofoil has something for everyone.

  • Arrived Finished: No matter what material your cabinetry is made of, you will have to finish it with something. With thermofoil cabinets, they arrive fully finished. With us, you can also have the doors drilled for hinges, so when you take them out of the box, its ready for hinges and mounting.  

Solid Wood Cabinets

Solid wood cabinets are one of the most valuable investments you can make in your home. They also have a variety of characteristics that set them apart from other types of kitchens, including durability and beauty.

  • Cabinet Boxes: Most cabinets are not entirely made of solid wood. Some of the cabinet box sides and shelving are made of hardwood plywood, but this should be expected. This is most common in newer solid wood cabinetry. For our cabinet boxes, the face frame will be made from the solid wood of your choosing.

  • Cabinet Door & Drawer Faces & Frames: All drawer fronts and door frames and are made of solid wood. This theme gives a kitchen a unique look and strength.

  • Durability: From just looking at solid wood cabinets, you can tell that it is strong and sturdy.

  • Beautiful To Look At: Unlike MDF, solid wood can be stained to highlight the natural beauty of the grain.  

Medium-Density Fibreboard (MDF) Cabinets

MDF is a type of composite material that consists of thin panels made from combinations such as veneer, resin, and wax that are heated and pressurized. MDF's strength lies in the fact that it does not twist or warp at larger sizes like solid wood. One noticeable difference with MDF is that it is heavier than solid wood. 

  • Finishes Well: MDF is an ideal material if you are looking for painted cabinets. When properly painted, MDF cabinet doors will have a smooth surface and you might even mistake them for solid wood at a glance.

Wood Veneer Cabinets

Wood veneers offer a cost-effective option for your kitchen's cabinet doors, with added durability and easy cleaning. Veneer cabinets are created with layers of wood that are thinner than 1/8 inch - the material which forms the front face or "veneer" being bonded to less expensive materials in the back. Veneer doors will also have banding that is wrapped around the sides of the door. Here you'll find five benefits about wood veneers:

  • Particle Board Core: Wood veneer cabinets use a particleboard core, which makes them cost-effective.

  • Replaceable: One benefit of veneer doors is that the veneer can be removed and replaced if needed. 

 How it All Adds Up

A large, traditional kitchen

If you're unsure about remodeling but still want to do something that will add value, there are a few things you can try. One of the easiest things you can do in the kitchen and bathroom is paint. Painting the walls or cabinets is a great way to freshen up your space or bring your cabinets back to life, without having a major kitchen remodeling budget. Updating your kitchen countertops is another way to dramatically change the feel of your space. You can also consider adding modern features like smart light switches, outlets with USB ports, or other gadgets.

If you are ready to start ordering or if you need assistance, please feel free to call us at 1-844-326-6680 or email Our team is here to help with everything from measuring to ordering.