As the CEO of a kitchen and bath upgrade contracting company, I’d love to tell you that the beautiful cabinet doors we installed for you will work perfectly from now until the end of time. They might. They’re that good, but in case they don’t, I wanted to take a few minutes to discuss what you can do about it.
Two Major Concerns With Cabinet Doors
First, of course, is operation, and with our exclusive 2 cabinet wholesalers, Fabuwood and Cliqstudios, you’re getting the smoothest soft-close action available in a mass-produced cabinet. The second concern is visual alignment. This may sound like a nitpicky detail, but when your cabinets are as beautiful as these, you’ll want your doors perfectly aligned, besides, misaligned cabinet door hinges can lead to edge damage from other doors.
There’s nothing to worry about, however. If you are capable of installing batteries in toys and electronics on holidays, you’ve got the needed skills to adjust these cabinet door hinges, it’s just that simple. To accomplish the task, you’ll need a #2 phillips screwdriver.
The Secret is in the Cabinet Door Hinges
Blumotion cabinet door hinges from Blum are known for soft action, durability, and easy adjustability and to access that you only have to open any of your cabinet doors and locate the hinges. There are three basic adjustments you can make.
- In and out. This adjusts how the cabinet door rests in the closed position, and how it strikes the face frame as it closes.
- Up and down. This is primarily a visual alignment for doors in a long line, or in pairs. It allows you to adjust the height to match other doors.
- Right and left: this is the adjustment that most effects smooth operation of your doors. By adjusting the upper, or lower hinge, or both hinges in tandem, you can tilt the door for alignment of the “reveal” (space between doors)
Blum’s adjustment hinges are designed for easy turning, and threaded to prevent shifting. Once they are aligned, you should be worry free for years to come, although rough, frequent, or jarring usage can cause them to shift slightly.
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How to Adjust Your Cabinet Door Hinges
The primary concern, in most cases, is one of visual alignment. Unless you’ve noticed that one or more of your doors are crooked, you probably don’t need to be concerned about it. The other factor is function, in which case, you’ve already located the problem door, or doors.
Your doors should be vertically aligned with the sides of the cabinet frame, and horizontally positioned in the center of the opening. The reveal between doors, should be straight, and even, from top to bottom. Doors should also be aligned in height with doors on their right and left, and horizontally with doors directly above, or below. A quick visual inspection is generally enough to spot other problem doors that need adjusting.
Horizontal Cabinet Door Hinge Adjustments
Wherever you see your doors are not “plumb” (straight up and down) or need to move right, or left, you’ll need to make that adjustment first. Compare the door to the surrounding frame, or the other door of a pair to determine which direction the door is tilting, or needs to be shifted.
This calls for a “side adjustment”. If the door is tilted away from the cabinet door hinges, you’ll need to start with the top hinge. If it’s tilted toward the hinges, start at the bottom.
- Locate the side adjustment screw at the hinge you want to start with. The side adjustment screw is located on the cabinet side hinge plate, closest to the door. Or, on an edge mount hinge, on the edge of the cabinet frame.
- Use the screwdriver to turn the screw clockwise to move the door toward the hinge, and counterclockwise to move it away.
- Continue adjusting until door aligns. For doors that are not tilted, adjust both screws evenly to move it right, or left.
- Adjust the second hinge, if needed.
Vertical Cabinet Door Hinge Adjustments
Doors that need to be moved up or down, need both cabinet door hinges adjusted at the evenly. With your door open, locate the vertical adjustment screws. They are located on the cabinet bulkhead itself on a compact hinge, or nearest the back of the cabinet.
- Locate the top screw on the mounting plate and turn it clockwise to raise the door, counterclockwise to lower it. Start with a quarter turn, then do the same at the bottom hinge.
- On doors without “Cam” action screws, loosen the plate adjustment screw, adjust the door and tighten.
- Close the door to check alignment.
- Continue adjusting, alternating top and bottom hinges as you go, until door is aligned.
If doors are more than slightly out of line with each other, both doors in a pair may need adjusting to reach level, with one going up, while the other comes down to meet it.
Adjusting the Cabinet Door In and Out
If the door is tilted out, or in, it will create an uneven effect when looking at the doors, and can cause improper operation. This is the finest adjustment you’ll make. Fortunately, the screw adjustment for this one is mechanical, so that you can adjust incrementally.
- Use a yardstick, or other long straight edge to check doors for tilt. Position narrow edge of straight edge against door, spanning more than one and look along it to find the uneven doors.
- Open the door and locate the adjustment screws in both cabinet door hinges.
- Turn the screw with the screwdriver, clockwise to draw the door in, counterclockwise to push it out.
- Close the door and recheck with your straight edge.
- Adjust as needed until doors sit evenly.
For best results, check all of your cabinet doors while adjusting. To maximize adjustment, tighten sliding adjustment screws firmly and check your doors every 4 to 6 months for any signs of trouble.
Miscellaneous Cabinet Door Hinge Adjustment Tips
While you have your screwdriver out, it’s a good idea to check the mounting screws of each cabinet door hinge and snug them down as needed. This will maintain optimum functionality and protect your Fabuwood or Cliqstudios cabinet doors from further damage due to loose hinges.
On a door that isn’t heavy enough to properly activate the “soft-close” option, locate the switch, on the hinge plate in the door, and flip it to off for just one hinge. This should reduce the resistance and allow your door to close normally.
The Bottom Line on Cabinet Door Hinge Adjustments
Anytime you’re inside your cabinets for maintenance, take a look at all of the hardware screws on the unit you’re working on. Tightening a screw in a hinge, drawer or door pull, or drawer guide can save the damage to your cabinets, and the trouble and expense of replacing hardware before it’s time. If you current cabinets are getting old and cabinet maintenance just won’t cut it, contact us today to get started on your cabinet renovations.