Pros & Cons of Thermofoil Cabinets

Previously, we have discussed the effects that humidity has on wood cabinets, as well as ways to control the humidity levels in your home. There are situations, however, in which wood cabinets may not be the best option. Perhaps you live by the water or you want to avoid the potential problems that painted wood cabinets may have and you want another option. One available option is thermofoil cabinets, but as with any cabinetry choice, there are pros & cons.

Schrock Thermofoil Cabinets

Schrock Thermofoil Cabinets

There are many benefits to thermofoil cabinets, especially their resistance to moisture. This makes them the ideal choice for bathroom cabinets, where humidity is always going to be a factor. Thermofoil is also less expensive and much easier to clean than traditional wood cabinets. Thermofoil cabinets are also available in a wide variety of looks, including high-end looking options for a mid-range price.

Small cabinet over toilet, small vanity with sink and under counter storage, and storage cabinets in a small bathroom.

White thermofoil was especially desirable to this homeowner because of the small size of the bathroom. Having white cabinetry helped to keep a bright, open feeling, where dark wood might have made the room feel smaller.

There are also some particular limitations to take into consideration. One of these important considerations is that they are not heat-resistant, meaning that if they are too close to an oven or other heating source, problems can arise, such as the laminate peeling away from the core. However, heat shields can be installed (which are essentially just metal strips) between the heat source (such as an oven) and the cabinets, which will handle this issue. Another thing to keep in mind is that while they are incredibly resistant to moisture, they are not completely waterproof. If the laminate becomes damaged in any way and moisture seeps in, the cabinet could be destroyed. One final consideration is that, since they are made of laminate melted onto a MDF core, they are heavier and a bit more difficult to install than traditional wood cabinets.

The good news is that thermofoil cabinets are made far better now than they were ten years ago and the limitations should not be too much of an issue if they are installed correctly and cared for well. Many cabinetry brands offer thermofoil cabinets, including Aristokraft and Schrock. They are an affordable solution, but you will need to decide if the pros outweigh the cons in your particular situation.

Kitchen Views


94 Responses to “Pros & Cons of Thermofoil Cabinets”

  1. 1 Bill Formella April 5, 2012 at 5:52 pm

    Yes, thermofoil doors have improved over the years, at least when purchased from reputable sources. The availability of realistic woodgrains is one of the best improvements but not always available from major manufacturers that still push white. Five piece thermofoil doors are another great option and are made with an adhesive that holds up to much higher temperatures than the one piece.

    • 2 terri September 24, 2014 at 10:45 am

      we are purchasing thermofoil from lowes, and are nervous about it, but we need the white uppers to go over oak base cabs, as we are unable to match the base cabinet color…. It is in a very small rental kitchen. what do you think???

      • 3 National Lumber September 24, 2014 at 2:42 pm

        Hello Terri,

        If it is not possible due to budget to purchase them all to match, then this solution is okay. The trick is to make the door style match as closely as possible. If the oak cabinets are slab, then use slab thermofoil. If the oak is raised door style, then try to get that in the thermofoil. Remember that thermofoil can melt in extreme heat, so do not place coffees makers or toaster directly underneath the wall cabinets.

        Good luck to you on your project,
        Brandy Souza
        General Manager of Kitchen Views

  2. 4 April 7, 2012 at 12:11 pm

    Bill, I find it interesting that you mention the 5 piece thermofoil door. I’ve seen some beautiful product from manufacturers who make the 5 piece door. Not only does it show off a wood grain well (because it keeps the grain running in pattern with the real thing), it has such a clean, crisp, uniform look to it overall! I think it’s a very positive evolution of the 3D door. Also, some of the vinyl manufacturers have done some amazing details in their product, like the grain textures. I’m a wood guy from way back, and even I’ve had to do a double take at some of the product to see if it was thermofoil or wood!

  3. 5 Carmensandiego in Montecito September 4, 2012 at 4:31 pm

    Never use thermofoil in a kitchen, especially if you cook!! I had a custom home and had the thermofoil put in. It was beautiful. I was told it would withstand heat and no problem. I’ve had to have them replaced 3 times over the last 10 yrs and they are STILL peeling. I cannot stand it. I don’t even use the oven unless the doors are opened.

    It’s maddening to think I’ve replaced these things so many times and still am having problems. Find an alternative. Do not use thermofoil if you cook!!

    • 6 Barb Feldman October 9, 2012 at 9:33 am

      We are having problems too! And not just because of heat sources – several of our cabinet doors and drawers have peeled and bubbled up, even across the room from the stove. My quest now is to find a way to fix the problem without replacing the product with more thermofoil. Is there a way to remove the thermofoil and reuse the underlying particle board in some way? I would appreciate any suggestions!

    • 7 Joe November 15, 2013 at 11:09 pm

      I’ve had IKEA thermofoil cabinets in the kitchen and a vanity in a very small bathroom for almost 10 years now. Not a single problem from any appliance with a daily cooked dinner. And they look as beautiful as the day i installed them.

      • 8 Bill Formella November 21, 2013 at 12:53 pm

        Joe, clearly the company that IKEA set up to make these used the right adhesive and fully activated it. The average buyer doesn’t realize that every piece to the puzzle is important. The adhesive, thermofoil, board, and machinery that is used to laminate all have different quality levels. When the right product is combined with the right process, you simply are not going to have the problems that many have reported here. The problem is that some of the major retailers either don’t care or simply are not educated enough themselves to make wise quality choices.

    • 9 heavystarch January 12, 2014 at 5:00 pm

      We have had Thermofoil in our kitchen for the past 9 years. We cook often and have had but two minor issues; both issues could have been prevented if we had been more careful.

      1. We dropped a metal pan that nicked the surface and pulled off a chunk of the vinyl wrap to reveal the wood. We patched and painted it. I never notice it unless I get close to it (normally owners would see these things like a sore thumb but it patched up really easily and is almost invisible). This cabinet face is directly beneath our kitchen sink and has zero issues.

      2. We had our toaster out and left a cabinet door open right over the toaster for too long. The heat from the toaster caused the cabinet to warp just a bit. We had to glue it back in place. We are just careful not to place the toaster directly under any cabinet with Thermofoil to avoid the heat warping issue.

      We love our cabinets because they are so easy to clean and maintain a beautifully crisp white appearance even after all these years.

    • 10 Cynthia Kester February 11, 2014 at 2:09 pm

      Ours are peeling also and it’s probably because I wanted “dropped” cabinets. . .so I could store “knick-knacks” on top of them. I think they’re too close to the heat and if they were higher we might not have had this problem. Maybe we can just replace the doors. it’s only 2 or 3.

  4. 11 Bill Formella September 7, 2012 at 7:32 pm

    Carmensandiego….I’m sorry for your experience. I’d love to know whose cabinets they were. There are three basic types of adhesives used for thermofoil doors and all three have very different ranges of heat resistance. It could be that your cabinet supplier is using an adhesive that begins to melt at 140 degrees F, not high enough for lower quality self-cleaning ovens or above a toaster oven.

    The truth of the matter is the highest quality thermofoil doors will last for years/decades even in the kitchen. BUT….they have to be made right.

  5. 15 Ann May 25, 2013 at 9:24 am

    We have had these cabinets for over 15 years and I love them. I have not had any problems. They are durable and easy to clean.

    • 16 Sarah October 3, 2013 at 4:33 pm

      I was imagining that they would be more expensive but they are not? Interesting, definitely something to think about then. I hadn’t even heard of them before.

  6. 17 sal May 30, 2013 at 10:56 am

    Our bathroom cabinets with thermofoil have chiped. What is the best way to fix them? Is painting the best alternative?

    • 18 National Lumber June 3, 2013 at 5:27 pm

      Hi Sal,

      Thanks for your question regarding Thermofoil door repair. Although we are not sure how severe the chipping is, our cabinet vendor recommends using a touch-up kit designed for kitchen cabinetry. This kit would obviously be matched to the color of the door that is damaged. Some moisture may intrude into the interior, which is generally made of MDF, a composite board, and so it may be necessary to replace the entire door.

      If you need additional information, want to order a touch-up kit, or would like me to clarify this message, please do not hesitate to contact me.

      Thank you.
      John Gendron | KV Showroom Sales & Design
      Kitchen Views | 71 Maple St, Mansfield, MA 02048
      P: (508)339-8020 ext: 5708 | C: (617)212-8223 | F: (508)261-6426

      • 19 Cheryl April 1, 2016 at 1:04 pm

        Where can I get replacement doors. Mine have been replaced twice and are de-lamitating again, I hate them

      • 20 National Lumber April 4, 2016 at 9:46 am

        It sounds like you need to find the source of the problem that is causing the delaminating. Once that is solved, then order new doors from the manufacturer. You didn’t give specifics, so is the problem heat in the kitchen? Heat shields can be added to prevent the heat from reaching the doors to prevent the peeling. Is it moisture in a bathroom? Perhaps you need better ventilation to remove the moisture. – Brandy Souza, General Manager of Kitchen Views

      • 21 Chuck April 4, 2016 at 11:15 am

        I know in my case, I bought the home from a lady who claimed the cabinets were bought from a store that was no longer in business. I looked thru every cabinet to find a manufacturer but couldn’t find one.

  7. 22 Dee Norton May 31, 2013 at 1:43 pm

    I had thermofoil cabinets installed in my kitchen thirteen years ago.
    Not a problem one.
    They are virtuallly maintenance free.
    I would not, especially for the price difference have wood again.
    Also I know that some people just have to have high end, but,
    That is a personal preference.
    I just sold that condo and will be replacing the cabinets in my new home with Thermofoil cabinets.

  8. 23 laurel July 2, 2013 at 8:25 am

    I need to have my house heat treated for bed bugs. We have refaced cabinets in the kitchen and bathroom. Will the high heat damage the cabinets?

    • 24 National Lumber July 2, 2013 at 3:04 pm

      Hello Laurel,

      Thermofoil can withstand 100 degrees, but when pushed to 120 and above, it can be questionable. You should refer to the pest control company on how much heat will be used in the home.

      Brandy Souza | Kitchen Views Assistant General Manager
      Kitchen Views | 120 Welby Rd., New Bedford, MA 02745
      P: (508)990-8020 ext: 3163 | C: (508)328-2844 | F: (508)998-7058

    • 25 National Lumber July 2, 2013 at 3:06 pm

      Hello Laurel,

      Thermofoil can withstand 100 degrees, but when pushed to 120 and above, it can be questionable. You should refer to the pest control company on how much heat will be used in the home.

      Brandy Souza | Kitchen Views Assistant General Manager
      Kitchen Views | 120 Welby Rd., New Bedford, MA 02745
      P: (508)990-8020 ext: 3163 | C: (508)328-2844 | F: (508)998-7058

      • 26 Bill Formella August 8, 2013 at 9:09 pm

        Wow! I just saw this post a month late. 100 degrees? Even the lowest level of adhesive, hot-melt applied to the 3DL (thermofoil) prior to pressing, has a heat resistance to at least 130 degrees F. The adhesive system that I recommend, a two-part polyurethane dispersion that is applied to the MDF, will give heat resistance to 200 degrees and even higher.

        Another good option is to go with the new 5-piece 3DL doors. In this case the stiles and rails are wrapped using a different process, a profile wrapper, and have heat resistance of 300 degrees and higher. If you have air temperatures of 300 degrees in your kitchen, get out!!! 🙂

  9. 27 Jason G. July 11, 2013 at 9:52 pm

    I too have thermofoil cabinets and have had no issues with them whatsoever. Would definitely recommend them.

  10. 29 karen July 14, 2013 at 7:29 pm

    Many of you have commented, both positive and negative, about thermofoil cabinets. I am about to purchase Kraftmaid brand. Do any of you have any experience with this brand in terms of heat resistance? I live at the beach and was leaning toward them due to the high humidity, but now after reading some of the comments, I am rethinking going with wood. We ordered a GE Cafe slide-in range and I’m concerned with damaging the cabinets. I would really appreciate any feedback! Thanks!!

    • 30 National Lumber July 17, 2013 at 2:22 pm

      Hello Karen,

      Humidity is typically not an issue with thermofoil cabinetry. It is made to withstand moisture and typically can do so better that wood. One concern here is if a “seal” is broken. Once a seal is broken,
      moisture can break down the base material inside, which is usually MDF. You can read more about the thermofoil process in this previous post:

      A main concern, especially going next to a range or oven, is heat. A Heat Shield can be applied, and is ordered from the respective cabinet company to prevent damage from heat, especially during your oven’s self-cleaning cycle.

      Thank you.
      John Gendron | KV Showroom Sales & Design
      Kitchen Views | 71 Maple St, Mansfield, MA 02048
      P: (508)339-8020 ext: 5708 | C: (617)212-8223 | F: (508)261-6426

    • 31 Barb Feldman August 8, 2013 at 4:18 pm

      Karen, I really don’t know why our refaced thermofoil cabinets failed and suspect it might have been due to something the contractor did. That contractor is no longer around and we are left to solve this problem on our own.

      Over the years I’ve become distrusting of new products and methods because we have not had good luck. I would stick with the ‘tried and true’ (i.e. wood cabinets in your case), or get a product with a really good warranty from a company that will be around in a few years.

      Just my humble opinion from a costly mistake.

  11. 32 Fran July 20, 2013 at 10:30 am

    HI, We are renovating our church’s kitchen which will hold a commercial 6 burner electric stove and commercial dishwasher. We are looking at both options Cabinetsmith thermafoil ordered through BMR doors in natural maple or veneered wood doors. Since it is in a common area being used by different folks which would you suggest to help us make the right choice.

  12. 33 Jan Simmons August 17, 2013 at 3:46 pm

    Can thermofoil cabinets be painted? The salesman at Lowes said they cannot, but I’m not sure if that is correct. We want to have more of a cream color than a pure white. We are buying and remodeling a kitchen. Thank you. Jan

    • 34 National Lumber October 14, 2013 at 11:09 am

      Hello Jan,

      In response to your question as to whether or not thermofoil cabinets can be painted: Although it has been attempted, thermofoil cabinets generally cannot be successfully painted.

      John Gendron | KV Showroom Sales & Design
      Kitchen Views | 71 Maple St, Mansfield, MA 02048
      P: (508)339-8020 ext: 5708

    • 35 heavystarch January 12, 2014 at 5:05 pm

      We took a small nick/chunk out of the face of one of our Thermofoil white cabinets. The nick was about 1/8 – 1/4″ wide. We patched the hole with a very small amount of putty; let it dry and then painted the spot. It blends perfectly with the cabinet.

      If you want to paint the entire surface of a Thermofoil cabinet I’m sure it can be done but you’ll need to make sure the surface is:

      1. Cleaned extremely well.
      2. Find the correct Primer and use that to cover all the Thermofoil surfaces (check with a pro painter for this). Maybe you need two coats of primer…
      3. Then use any paint from that point. Again check with the pros.

      Anything can be painted IMO if you follow the correct steps in cleaning, prepping and priming.

  13. 36 CDS September 6, 2013 at 3:27 pm

    We are refacing our kitchen and have made a thermofoil cabinet selection from Home Depot. We are also considering an additional electric single wall oven where our pantry is. We will have cabinets above and below the oven. Is it possible that the heat from the oven will melt away the thermofoil cabinet doors and refacing?! PLEASE ADVISE!

    • 37 National Lumber October 14, 2013 at 11:04 am

      Oven cabinets do require a “heat shield” of some kind, used to “deflect heat
      from self-cleaning ovens away from cabinet doors and drawer fronts”, according
      to the Schrock cabinetry company. Heat shields are often provided with, or built in to,
      the appliances, or can be ordered through the cabinet companies.

      John Gendron | KV Showroom Sales & Design
      Kitchen Views | 71 Maple St, Mansfield, MA 02048
      P: (508)339-8020 ext: 5708

  14. 38 February 6, 2014 at 9:56 pm

    Everyone loves it when people come together and share ideas. Great website, stick with it!|

  15. 39 Chuck February 10, 2014 at 9:56 pm

    Although Kitchen Views does not recommend painting Thermofoil cabinets, we are passing this message along for those who would find it helpful to the ongoing conversation with people participating from all over the country. For those in the New England region, we hope you will contact Kitchen Views for high-quality Thermofoil cabinets from Schrock. Thank you.

    For those that find this site like I did due to issues, here is a fix I learned;

    I recently bought a home in Ft Myers. Unknown to me when we bought it, the kitchen cabinets (which looked amazing) are thermafoil. Doing a final inspection, we noticed 3 cabinet doors and 2 drawers had part of the foil unwrapping from the MDF. We panicked. We also found they were only 3 years old and were bought and installed by a company in Ft Myers that had since gone out of business, I believe Kitchen Innovations on Metro.

    Anyway, the ladies in the paint dept at the Tamiama Home Depot store said they had seen this problem many times and had an easy and inexpensive fix.

    I used a razor knife to carefully, and not very deep, cut the peeled up aprt off by cutting past the loose foil and into the foil that was still glued securely on. I then peeled the foil off and used 1-2-3 Kilz ( I think it was the 1-2-3 can, light blue and white quart can) to seal the MDF and seal where the foil and the open wood met to seal it. I then brought in a cabinet door (has a nice multi colored cherry wood appearance) and they color matched a sample paint for me and I painted it on with 2 coats using a foam roller so no brush marks would be visible.

    It was easier to do than I imagined when I was at Home Depot, and it looks MUCH better than I thought it would. My wife was very impressed ( at my handy work AND not needing to buy new cabinets) as was the realtor.

    One of the cabinet doors is directly above the microwave and the fan from the microwave is venting out the top (almost nowhere for the air to escape) instead of venting out the front. Another door and the 2 drawers that had this problem are near the top of the range (which seems like its a heat issue). The other door is a upper cabinet door above the dishwasher and its vent. Again, seems like the steam (heat) is the issue.

    There were no heat shields on these doors and drawers, so I am going to call see if I can get some to help prevent this from happening again. I am also going to change the microwave from a top vent to a front vent, as soon as I can find directions on changing the top front plate to allow the air to get blown out the front.

  16. 40 Ian Rice February 12, 2014 at 1:33 pm

    We have high gloss thermofoil doors installed. Keep the coffee maker and kettle out from under the uppers No problems after 2 years. Our manufacturer warrants the finish for 12 years. Looks terrific.

  17. 41 Zibby April 19, 2014 at 9:15 pm

    Few of my cabinet door faces came off completely.Is there any way to glue them back to the door ,or order just thermofoil and glue it somehow ,or I have to buy the whole door? Please help.

    • 42 National Lumber April 21, 2014 at 8:29 am

      The glue cannot be re-activated if the face is lifting off the door. Because heat is needed when applying Thermofoil to doors, you will need to order new doors.

      Brandy Souza
      General Manager of Kitchen Views

    • 44 John May 15, 2014 at 8:21 pm

      A new customer wants me to paint and re-glue her kitchen cabinets. I’ll try the two part system for re-gluing mentioned in a reply. I’m going to test two primers, Stix and Aqualock from Insl-x . Let them cure for five days and see what works. Order a heat shield for the doors above the range

  18. 45 National Lumber May 16, 2014 at 10:28 am

    Please tell us what worked. We would really like to know!

  19. 46 PAULA June 3, 2014 at 10:20 am


    • 47 National Lumber June 4, 2014 at 2:53 pm

      Hello Paula,

      You don’t mention your location. Are you in the New England region? Kitchen Views now offers cabinet refacing, too. If you are in our area, we hope you’ll consider coming into one of our showrooms to discuss your project. In answer to your question, here are my thoughts:

      The grill could produce enough heat to separate the Thermofoil from its core. You may want to:
      1) Use a wider hood that covers an extra 3″ on each side of the cooktop (so if you are using a 30″ cooktop, use a 36″ venting hood), or
      2) Shorten the wall cabinets on either side of the cooktop to get them farther away from the grill, or
      3) Use open cabinets on either side of the cooktop

      Just some suggestions. Always use your vent while using the grill and that may cut down on some heat issues.


      Brandy Souza | General Manager of Kitchen Views

      • 48 Alejandra P September 25, 2016 at 4:23 pm

        Hi there. My husband and I are starting to plan our kith en remodel, where can I find more information about the company you have mentioned. We live in Connecticut

      • 49 John September 28, 2016 at 11:15 am

        Hello Alejandra. The product line that Kitchen Views uses for refacing is Showplace Wood Products out of South Dakota. The installer we use is based in Eastern Massachusetts and unfortunately would not go to Connecticut. If you are interested in a quote for parts, please reach out to me at . Thanks

  20. 50 Cliff June 12, 2014 at 6:15 pm

    Hi – Thanks for all the helpful posts here. I am looking to purchase just slab style thermofoil replacement doors with concealed hinges. I haven’t found much selection in finishes but there is a product at Lowes from Latitude Cabinets that I like but they will not sell just doors. This company makes exclusively for Lowes.They have a horizontal wood grain pattern called “Moda” that I like (or something similar). Is this something National Lumber can help with?
    Thanks very much!

    • 51 National Lumber June 13, 2014 at 8:37 am

      Hello Cliff, are you in the New England area? If so, please contact John Allen of Kitchen Views at 617-244-8020 x2119 or for information about our new “Refacing & More” product line. We are launching this program this summer and there are many options for you. Within the next month we’ll have information available through the Kitchen Views website. With this new product line you can purchase just new cabinet doors in a wide range of materials and styles. Ask him about the “Duet” slab-style door. Usually this is completed with laminating the existing cabinet boxes to match the new doors. But if all you need are the doors, then I’m sure he can help you. ~ Brandy Souza, General Manager of Kitchen Views

  21. 52 Dell July 24, 2014 at 6:29 pm

    The home we are purchasing has about 4 doors that have bubbles on the front panel (not knicks or tears). Is there a way to fox these without replacing those 4 doors?? The kitchen has 41 doors/drawers. Other cabinets are great. Hate to redo whole kitchen. Help!?!?!?

    • 53 National Lumber July 29, 2014 at 12:48 pm

      Unfortunately, they can’t be repaired. If you look in the drawers or sink base, you may be able to find the manufacturer name. You could order replacement doors from them for the cabinets. You can also ask the previous owner of the home if they know where the cabinets were purchased.

      Brandy Souza | General Manager of Kitchen Views

  22. 54 kathyhlara October 27, 2014 at 6:11 pm

    Everybody loves it when individuals share tips and get together. Excellent site, stay with it!|

  23. 55 Candy Heaslip January 15, 2015 at 10:16 pm

    Just bought a condo with thermafoil cabinets in kitchen and 2 baths that were installed in 2006. There are many problems with delamination. I am considering removing the laminate film from the doors and drawers and painting the underlying cabinets. Wondering if this is an option?

    • 56 National Lumber January 16, 2015 at 10:09 am

      You cannot remove the Thermofoil and paint the underlying cabinet because the substrate is made of MDF, not solid wood that can be sanded and painted. The Thermofoil is heated and pressed against the MDF (medium density fiberboard). Thermofoil and painted MDF fail once the top coat has been scratched cracked, or broken in some way, letting moisture in. Once the delamination occurs, the MDF is exposed to humidity causing it to expand and absorb moisture. In addition, Thermofoil cannot withstand high heat as it can lift from the substrate and expose the MDF. Your best course of action, if you want painted doors, is to measure the existing doors and have new ones made in solid wood and paint them. Or purchase new vanities for the bathrooms. If you can find the cabinet manufacturer, you can order doors from them as well.

      You don’t mention your location. If you are in the New England area, Kitchen Views could help you further in finding options. For example, we now offer cabinetry refacing that includes producing new doors and refacing the cabinet boxes.

      Good luck on your project.

      Brandy Souza | General Manager of Kitchen Views

      • 57 Ben February 19, 2015 at 12:58 pm

        I’ve been making raised panel cabinet doors for years and often use MDF for the raised panel. I’ve never had a problem sanding and painting MDF. MDF holds paint quite well.

  24. 58 Patty January 24, 2015 at 9:45 pm

    I live in north central Florida and was wondering if you have any National Lumber services in this part of the state. I have a home that is a 100 years old but my kitchen cabinets are structurally sound. I just want to update so I’d like to reface the doors but after researching, I’m really nervous. However, I’d love to give your company a try. You sound very trustworthy:)

  25. 60 Regina Vassallo January 29, 2015 at 7:39 am

    From all these replies it seems to be 50/50 for thermofoil. We just bought a house on the Jersey Shore, a block from the beach. I was looking into a laminate or thermofoil cabinet, but we are chefs in this family and are always cooking. Should I assume wood cabinets are the way to go for us? What do you think about Norcraft cabinets. Not looking to spend a ton of money as this is a second home. Thanks!!

    • 61 National Lumber January 29, 2015 at 11:39 am

      Thermofoil has its place. It is great for high humidity areas that want a white cabinet because the doors do not expand and contract. White painted cabinets that are wood will expand and contract causing the paint to split and crack in high humidity. The downside to thermofoil is that it does not like high cooking heat like steam or self-cleaning ovens. This can cause the thermofoil to lift and humidity to get into the substrate and warp the door. I would recommend wood cabinets that are stained for your project. If you really want white, I would say to use thermofoil with a really good stainless steel vent above the cooktop and heat shields on either side of the oven.

      Brandy Souza, General Manager of Kitchen Views

      • 62 Regina Vassallo January 29, 2015 at 7:38 pm

        Thank you Brandy for your honesty. I think I will stick with the wood cabinets. I don’t need to be worried about peeling and bubbling the thermofoil when we want to cook.

      • 63 National Lumber January 30, 2015 at 9:10 am

        In addition to designing the layout of a kitchen, an important part of the service provided by a qualified kitchen designer is to help the homeowner determine the correct type of materials to fit their lifestyle, environmental conditions, etc. This guidance results in a kitchen that meets the homeowners needs both aesthetically and practically. A good kitchen designer should not be trying to sell you a particular product, but rather offering you information on the pros and cons of various options and explaining their recommendations based on experience. While I’m glad that I could be of assistance in some small way, you may want to consider consulting with a qualified kitchen designer in your area in order to get the best results for this investment in your home.

  26. 64 T. Yee February 23, 2015 at 1:58 pm

    We just had Thermofoil cabinet doors put on our bathroom cabinet & except for the door hinge, does not have knobs or hardware. Am I able to drill on the inside of the door to install a small towel rack to wipe off the sink after use? Thank you for your response.

  27. 66 John Stavros March 6, 2015 at 12:28 pm

    We have one cabinet door over the stove where hearshields were not installed. One door peeled. If we can get a door milled can we find someone to Thermafoik it(white). Or is it too silly to think we could match it with paint. It’s one of about 40 doors.

    • 67 National Lumber March 6, 2015 at 2:35 pm

      The best bet is to get a new door ordered from the factory that made the kitchen cabinets originally or find a door that closely matches it.

      Brandy Souza, General Manager of Kitchen Views

  28. 68 Chuck March 6, 2015 at 2:57 pm

    I tried looking in my cabinets for a sticker or something that listed the maker of my cabinets and could not find any at all I bough a pre-existing home).

    I ended up using a utility knife to carefully cut away the part that peeled and just pulling that small amount off. I then used a Kilz brand sealer paint that was tinted to the color of the cabinet, and then painting it with color match paint from a home improvement store that can color match. I sealed over the exposed part and went over onto the thermafoil, and then covered it all with paint.

    It is pretty easy to do and workes well. The Kilz seals the exposed cabinet and the part that joins the thermafoil so it wont peel away any more.

    This had taken place on cabinets that were close to heat sources (oven, dishwasher, toaster oven, etc…)

  29. 69 michele March 11, 2015 at 3:27 pm

    does anyone have an opinion on schrock thermofoil?

  30. 70 Nancy Burkhardt March 18, 2015 at 10:18 am

    I was gong to have my kitchen cabinets replaced with thermafoil cabinets. If I have a an over range microwave installed, will this protect the thermafoil cabinet that is above the microwave or will this cause even more heat that would damage the cabinet? Does a heat shield need to be installed?

    • 71 National Lumber April 7, 2015 at 8:14 am

      Our Schrock Cabinetry representative answers: As long as the microwave is properly vented, and blower is on while cooking, there should be no problems. Heat shields are only used on the sides of base cabinets next to ranges.

  31. 72 lisa hewitt April 6, 2015 at 6:05 pm

    What about thermofoil cabinets next to a dishwasher?

    • 73 National Lumber April 7, 2015 at 8:17 am

      It should be okay, as long as you let the dishwasher finish so no steam exits when opening the door. If you do open the dishwasher while it is still hot, the steam could harm the sink base door. To avoid this, use heat shields on either side of the dishwasher.

      Brandy Souza | General Manager of Kitchen Views

  32. 74 Deborah July 21, 2015 at 12:38 pm

    I just had the problem with the heat from my oven melting away the white high gloss thermafoil. I had two drawers and one door replaced, they don’t match! I was told that it would take 1 to 2 months for the colors to match up? Am I being played for stupid???? Can anyone help me?? They did put in the heat strips. Deborah

  33. 75 Albert Bass August 30, 2015 at 8:41 am

    can I cut away the delaminated portion of my thermofoil cabinet doors ,put a coat of contact cement on this plus the surrounding area , cut a new piece of new .035 h.p. laminate , glue up this surface ,. allow both surfaces to dry and then contact the two surfaces creating a new h.p.l visable surface .?

    • 76 Chuck November 12, 2015 at 8:02 pm

      I had small sections of the thermafoil peel away in my cabinets. Here’s what I did;

      Using a sharp razor, cut away the part that’s peeling away. Cut just past the part that’s lifted, and lift off. I used tinted kilz (tinted to the paint color) to seal the Mdf and seal the joint of the mdf and thermafoil.

      I had regular interior paint color matched to the thermafoil and then paint over the kilz and just onto the mdf. It looks really good and you can’t see it unless you get within inches of the cabinet.

  34. 77 Terry February 2, 2016 at 9:14 pm

    Toasters and hot water kettles r also an issue. Unless u can train your kids and yourself, to pull every thing away from underneath, tremofoil will fail.

  35. 79 Vickie February 17, 2016 at 4:51 pm

    Thinking of purchasing Thermofoil cabinets for a laundry room. Is there a difference in quality between those offered at Lowes and those offered thru a cabinet company such as Fabuwood?

    • 80 National Lumber February 19, 2016 at 12:30 pm

      That is a very good question. Yes, there are differences between the quality of various brands that make what is known as Thermofoil. Our expert is on vacation this week, but I’ll do what I can to explain. The quality differences of various brands of cabinets is in the materials used and the construction process, with lower priced brands usually using cabinet boxes that are not as strongly built as better brands. Look inside the cabinet to see how it is constructed. For example, does it have dovetailed drawers? Or are the drawers constructed with staples or nails? While the less expensive brand may be appropriate in some cases, the more expensive brands will stand up to the test of time and heavy use.

      In my personal experience as a homeowner (not designer), I bought quality Schrock brand Thermofoil from Kitchen Views for my bathroom remodel. The drawers are not dovetailed, but they are solidly constructed. It’s a small room and I wanted white to make it feel less closed in. I also wanted an easy to clean surface. (Good ventilation is important in a bathroom to remove excess moisture, not just for the cabinets but they benefit.) Without specifically asking my contractor what he thought of them, he volunteered that he was very pleased with the quality of the cabinetry I selected. He said that he’d been asked to install cabinetry from one of the big box stores by other clients, and the quality was poor. According to this contractor, sometimes the big box stores sell a less expensive version of a brand that sells for more elsewhere, but it is not the same quality. Someone else once told me that their contractor had to reinforce some less expensive cabinets for him during the installation. Extra work means extra cost. So do you really save money by purchasing a less expensive cabinet?

      One difference of doing business with Kitchen Views is that we select brands that give you the best value in your price range. We do not sell anything that is poorly made, so any brand we sell is good quality. If you are not in the New England region where we are located, I suggest that you do an online search for reviews of the particular brand of cabinet you are thinking of purchasing. Anything can look good in a photo, but good quality will stand the test of real life use for many years to come. That is why we have showrooms where customers can see the quality of the products for themselves .

      Kitchen Views

  36. 81 Terri February 26, 2016 at 9:57 pm

    I’ve been doing some homework on thermal foil cabinets. I read all the comments on this site and it looks like most of you are using this in your kitchen and bath. I’m having a Craft room designed and I’m thinking about using thermal foil cabinets by Hampton Bay thru home depot. Can anyone tell me if this is a good choice for a craft room. Thanks for your feedback.

    • 82 National Lumber February 29, 2016 at 11:26 am

      Hello Terri, thanks for joining the conversation. We haven’t had anyone ask about using Thermofoil in a craft room before. We don’t sell the particular brand you mention, so I cannot speak specifically about that brand. I would think that you won’t have the heat or moisture in a craft room that can cause problems, so it should be a good looking choice for an easy care surface. Just keep in mind what we’ve posted previously about cabinetry construction.

      There are differences between the quality of various brands that make what is known as Thermofoil. The quality differences of various brands of cabinets is in the materials used and the construction process, with lower priced brands usually using cabinet boxes that are not as strongly built as better brands. Look inside the cabinet to see how it is constructed. For example, does it have dovetailed drawers? Or are the drawers constructed with staples or nails? While the less expensive brand may be appropriate in some cases, the more expensive brands will stand up to the test of time and heavy use.

    • 83 Marina April 21, 2016 at 2:17 pm

      Hi Terry! May I ask what did you end up doing? I ‘m in the same process with home depot, they swear that their brand don’t have heat issues…

      • 84 National Lumber April 22, 2016 at 8:18 am

        Since heat is usually an issue with Thermofoil style cabinets, we suggest that you get a warranty in writing from any company that says otherwise. We cannot speak for another retailer, however, it doesn’t matter what a sales person says if the company won’t back it up.

      • 85 Marina April 22, 2016 at 8:40 am

        Thank you for your respond . Yes ,home depot gives 5 years waranty on their product, plus they say they use cold epoxy and heat shield… I’m still not convinced , since Im going to have my kitchen more then 5 years. What other option for me out there, I only want white cabinets?

      • 86 National Lumber April 22, 2016 at 9:05 am

        First, can you tell me where you are located? Are you in the New England area that Kitchen Views serves? Second, I see that you do say they mentioned using a heat shield, which we have recommended previously. I’m checking with a manager for a further answer on possible alternative products.

      • 87 Berdell April 22, 2016 at 4:04 pm

        All thermofoil will have issues eventually depending on the exposure to humidity. We found a local cabinet company and got the doors that were delaminating replaced. Only had to replace 8 out of 40 doors / drawers. Hope Home Depot provides a written lifetime guarantee for the cabinets otherswise they are lying. I found them to be over priced compared to our local mom & pop shops too.

      • 88 National Lumber April 25, 2016 at 11:09 am

        The other option is painted wood or Pure Style laminate. Here’s information from Schrock about PureStyle laminate, as well as more info about thermofoil cabinets.

        PureStyle is the process of wrapping durable laminate materials around door frames and select trim and premium mouldings resulting in products with crisp styling features and a surface that provides abrasion resistance and meets/exceeds all of the KCMA performance standards. PureStyle products are wrapped (versus form pressed onto a Medium Density Fiberboard (MDF) slab like thermofoil) and has a clear, integrated top coat for superior durability. The lineals and core panel material are made of MDF to ensure a consistent and stable product.

        These doors offer the durability of a laminate and the beauty of paint and finished wood while bringing peace of mind to those who care about creating a better environment – both inside and outside of their homes.

        Solid color PureStyle doors can be distinguished from painted cabinets by their picture perfect distribution of satin smooth color on a sleek surface with optimum durability. Trim items will feature a matching painted finish except where noted in product specifications.

        Textured wood grain PureStyle doors feature design leading, high definition wood grain laminates on doors, drawer fronts, overlay fillers, and Premium trim items. The surfaces are laminate based materials with an integrated top coat that provides superior beauty, durabiltiy and performance while meeting or exceeding all of the KCMA performance standards. The core panel material is made of MDF to ensure a consistent and stable product. Additional coordinating trim items in the cabinet box color are also available.

        Thermofoil doors and drawer fronts feature a shaped MDF core covered with a seamless vinyl material on the face and edges, and a melanine layer on the back. The vinyl material is applied to the MDF with an adhesive, and heat and pressure are used to create a product with excellent wear and heat resistance properties.

  37. 89 Marina April 22, 2016 at 9:13 am

    I’m in Minnesota

  38. 90 Alan L February 19, 2017 at 6:08 pm

    Can the sun shining through the windows, eventually cause bubbling? on Thermofoil cabinet doors?

    • 91 National Lumber February 20, 2017 at 10:46 am

      No. The heat would have to exceed 150 degrees to do that.

      • 92 William John Formella February 20, 2017 at 5:31 pm

        Alan, I’ve been in this business for 25 years doing tech support for companies that do thermofoil (3D Lamination). A good quality product done with a 2 part adhesive mixed properly and activated at the right temperatures will have heat resistance of 180 or higher. However, if the manufacturer uses a poor quality adhesive and/or doesn’t activate it properly, heat resistance can be as low as 120 degrees, and may even come apart at normal room temperatures. Thermofoil has taken a beating because of how careless some companies have been. However, I have a set of storage cabinets that have doors I personally ran while helping another company. They were made in 1996 and are still holding together today. There is no bubbling in the profiles and the edges are still good.

  39. 93 Rose February 8, 2019 at 5:44 pm

    so the dishwasher and the microwave should have a front vent to blow the steam away. I too am buying thermofoil from Lowes and it is very confusing with the pros and cons. do you recommend heat shields to be on the safe side

    • 94 National Lumber February 12, 2019 at 2:02 pm

      Heat shields are best for the stove area. The dishwasher should be left closed until the steam is gone. It is ok to open with steam once in a awhile, but try to avoid it to prevent the cabinets on either side from getting excessive steam.

      Coffee makers and anything that lets off steam should be pulled away from the wall cabinets to prevent steam being placed on the same cabinets over and over again causing the foil to potentially lift.

      Side note: I have two boys and I love the fact they can spill, splatter and be themselves in the kitchen with easy clean up. My kitchen always looks bright white and is very easy to maintain with no cracking or staining that you may get with painted finish.

      Brandy Souza, Vice President of Kitchen Views

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