Wood Cabinets vs. Laminate Cabinets: Which Is The Best For You?

Man assembling kitchen cabinet

Two of the most common types of cabinets in Australia are wood cabinets and laminate cabinets — but which is best?

The best type of cabinets for you are the ones that suit your budget, design dreams and your goals for storage and longevity. While wood cabinets may be ideal for some people, laminate cabinets may be the better choice for others.

To help you make a decision, we have developed a list of pros and cons of wood cabinets versus laminate cabinets, straight from our carpentry experts at QLD Building Repairs. And if you have any questions, we’re only a call or email away.

Pros & Cons of Wood Cabinets

Wood cabinets have long been a favourite in Australian homes. The main reason behind their popularity is their natural and timeless appeal, but this may come at a greater cost.

Kitchen cabinets installation Blind corner cabinet, island drawers and counter cabinets installed

Pros of Wood Cabinets

  1. Aesthetic Appeal: Each piece of wooden cabinetry is unique, with its own set of grains and knots, providing your kitchen with a distinctive look.
  2. Durability: Wood is known for its incredible longevity. With proper care, wood cabinets can last for decades.
  3. Customisability: Wood cabinets can be sanded down and refinished, allowing you to change the look of your kitchen over time.

Cons of Wood Cabinets

  1. Price: Authentic wood cabinets are typically more expensive than their laminate counterparts.
  2. Maintenance: Wood cabinets require regular maintenance to prevent damage from moisture and pests.

Pros & Cons of Laminate Cabinets

Laminate cabinets are one of the other most highly requested types of cabinets in Australia, and offer a sleek and modern look, but on a more affordable budget.

White kitchen cabinets with

Pros of Laminate Cabinets

  1. Affordability: Laminate cabinets are usually more budget-friendly, making them a popular choice for homeowners looking for cost-effective solutions.
  2. Low Maintenance: Unlike wood, laminate is resistant to moisture and doesn’t require frequent upkeep.
  3. Variety: Laminate cabinets come in a wide range of colours and finishes, enabling you to match your kitchen’s overall design.

Cons of Laminate Cabinets

  1. Durability: While laminate cabinets can withstand daily use, they might not last as long as wood cabinets.
  2. Repairability: Once damaged, laminate cabinets are challenging to repair.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I refinish or repaint laminate cabinets to give them a different appearance like I can with wood cabinets?

You can change the appearance of laminate cabinets, but nowhere near as easily as you can with wood cabinets. To change the appearance of laminate cabinets, you will need to find primer and paint made for laminate cabinets, otherwise it may not stick to the surface.

Alternatively, you may be able to add mouldings or coverings to laminate cabinets, but again, this can be tricky. It’s best to speak to a cabinet maintenance and repair team, like our crew at QLD Building Repairs, to find the best solution.

Are there any specific considerations for choosing between wood and laminate cabinets in terms of moisture resistance?

Yes, there are certainly considerations to take into account when it comes to moisture resistance.

Wood cabinets can absorb water and humidity, which can lead to warping and peeling of the finish. On the other hand, laminate is more resistant to moisture but it won’t protect your cabinetry from becoming damaged by water over time. If you live in an area with high humidity or a lot of moisture, you may want to consider investing in a cabinet refinishing and repair service to keep your cabinets in tip-top shape.

At the end of the day, it’s important to make sure you research what your options are before making a decision.

Are wood cabinets more expensive than laminate cabinets?

Yes, wood cabinets are usually more expensive than laminate cabinets. However, the cost of wood can vary depending on the type and quality you select. Lower-end cabinet materials can be found at a much lower price point than higher-quality hardwoods.

Laminate is typically more affordable because it’s a man-made material constructed with particleboard. It also requires less maintenance than wood, which can save you money over time.

Ultimately, the best cabinet material for your home is a personal choice and will depend on your budget and design goals. If you have any questions about wood or laminate cabinets in Australia, don’t hesitate to reach out to our team at QLD Building Repairs.


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