One of the essential fittings of a kitchen is the kitchen cabinet. From providing storage space in your kitchen to making it look stylish and sophisticated, the kitchen cabinets play a crucial role.
The general outlook of the kitchen is defined by the make and style of the kitchen cabinet.
The role of kitchen cabinets is such that you need to provide a lot of attention to their quality and maintenance.
Do Kitchen Cabinets Have Backs?
Kitchen cabinets do have backs.
The general notion is that the kitchen cabinet is fixed directly to the wall. But it is not so. Though the cabinet as a whole is fixed to the wall, the kitchen cabinets have backs. The back of the cabinet provides a definite shape to the fitting. It enables the cabinet, especially the one below the countertop, to handle the weight of the countertop.
Kitchen walls tend to get moist from spills and splashes. This moisture can seep into the cabinet wood and destroy the whole cabinet. If a back is installed for the cabinet, it helps protect the entire fitting from damage.
Do Cabinets Need A Back Panel?
The back panel refers to the back of a cabinet. Cabinets do need a back panel. Some designers believe that back panels add to the overall cost of the interiors and hence are not required.
Moreover, the wall would serve as the back of the cabinet, and there is no need for an additional back panel. But, in reality, back panels are required because of the following advantages it offers.
Uniform Distribution Of Weight
Kitchen countertops rest on the bottom kitchen cabinets. With the back panel installed, the weight of the countertop is equally distributed on all four sides of the cabinet.
This provides greater stability to the whole structure. In the absence of a back panel, there is no uniform distribution of weight which may not be good in the long run.
Less Chances Of Deformation
A cabinet is subjected to rough usage on a daily basis. When a cabinet is installed without a back, misalignment of the sides can happen in the long run.
By installing back for cabinets, the chances of deformation are considerably reduced.
More Professional Look
The drywall on the back of the cabinet is usually unpainted. If the cabinet is fitted directly to the wall, the unpainted drywall becomes visible when you open it.
With a back panel installed, the cabinet gets a more professional approach.
The walls of old houses will have holes through which insects like ants come out. When a back panel is fixed for the cabinet, the chances of insects coming out are minimal.
Also, moisture seeping from the wall is also considerably low when you go for a back panel. This helps protect your food from insects and molds.
Cost-Effective In The Long Run
Usually, plywood panels are used as kitchen cabinet backs. These panels are highly durable than the drywall on the back of the cabinet.
Additionally, replacing the cabinet backing is easier than replacing the drywall in case of wear and tear.
Thus, it proves to be cost-effective in the long run.
Do Sink Base Cabinets Have A Back?
Sink-based cabinets are those that are attached to the bottom of the sink. The design of the sink cabinets is different from the normal kitchen cabinets. These type of cabinets do not have a back panel. The absence of back panel makes it easy to access plumbing below the sink. For the same reason, these cabinets do not have any drawers.
Besides, garbage disposals also occupy space in the sink base cabinets. If a back panel is fixed, it reduces the space available for garbage disposal.
This is another reason why sink base cabinets do not have backs.
What Do You Put On The Back Of Cabinets?
Kitchen cabinets and their back are mainly made of three types of materials – plywood, MDF (Medium Density Fiberboard), solid wood and metal. Each of these materials has its own pros and cons.
Thus, you should decide on the right type of material based on your choice.
Plywood consists of thin layers of wood veneer glued together. Thus this type of wood has high stability. The main advantage of plywood is that it is easy to repair. If the plywood gets chipped off by any chance, you can easily repair the same with wood fillers.
What’s more, it is lightweight and easy to install. Because of the sturdiness and stability of the wood, it can withstand the weight of the kitchen countertop.
Also, it is less expensive when compared to other types of wood.
Plywood comes in different thicknesses. Thus, if you do not select it carefully, the cabinet may not be able to withstand the weight.
Though thinner plywoods can be used for cabinet backs, the sides should be made of thicker material.
MDF or Medium Density Fiberboard is a wooden panel that combines wood fiber of hardwood and softwood residuals.
This is one of the most popular materials used for making kitchen cabinet backs. The main advantage of MDF is that it is moisture resistant. This makes it a great choice for the kitchen where the fittings come in contact with water.
It is also easy to cut and hence can fit cabinets of any size and shape. On top of that, MDF has a flat and even surface. Thus, you can easily apply paint to its surface to provide a clean look.
The main drawback of MDF is that it is a weak material compared to other types of wood. It can sag or break easily with weight. Besides, it cannot withstand high temperatures.
This may not be an issue in normal households. But MDF may not be a great choice in commercial spaces where several ovens and hobs are used.
Solid wood is one of the most beautiful materials you can use for kitchen cabinets. The natural wood grain and its excellent finish make it a great choice for most modern kitchens. Solid wood cabinets are also highly durable and can last for years.
It is environmentally friendly and is available in different styles depending on the type of wood, like maple, walnut, cherry and oak.
The disadvantage of solid wood is that it is very heavy. If it is not constructed and installed correctly, it can cause breakage, especially on the hinges. Another drawback is the high price of the wood.
Its sustainable nature and high quality make it an expensive wood. Moreover, it is also susceptible to stain.
Metal cabinets are not very common in residential spaces; rather it is used mainly in commercial kitchens. But if you want to provide a modern and unique touch to your kitchen, you can use metal cabinets.
Stainless steel is mostly used for metal cabinets. The main advantage of metal cabinet backs is that it is easy to clean without affecting the finish of the metal. It is water and heat resistant, which is very important for kitchen cabinet backs.
What’s more, they are highly durable. There is hardly any need to replace the same in the future.
Not everyone likes the look of stainless steel kitchen cabinets. Chances are also high for the metal to get dented. If this happens, it is difficult to get the cabinet repaired.
Before you go, you may also enjoy these articles:
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Kitchen cabinets are one of the most important fittings of a kitchen. They are available in different materials and styles to suit all types of kitchens.
Kitchen cabinet backs are equally important to ensure the sturdiness of the cabinet. A sink cabinet may not have a back for practical reasons, but other kitchen cabinets have backs.
It is always best to choose highly durable material for kitchen cabinets and backs so that it lasts for long.