Are there durable modular kitchen cabinet brands in Canada, outside of ikea?

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Posted by: from Toronto
11/2/2013 at 12:08:27 PM

I'm planning a future kitchen reno and just beginning to research brands and ideas. My current kitchen has melamine doors which are disintegrating in the under sink area as water seeps into the seams and the particle board swells and destroys the doors.

I'm wondering if there is a brand of cabinets that is more water resistant and sturdy. I do not want a "high end" kitchen, but I do want a kitchen that will stand up to normal wear and tear that one would expect in a kitchen. I live in Toronto.

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Brad from BK Construction in Ottawa
Date/Time11/5/2013 at 9:10:02 PM


I am a kitchen installer for one of the big box stores. With kitchen cabinets you get what you pay for.

Another thing I have discovered is that maintenance has a lot to do with durability, if you look after them they will look after you.

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Helen in Toronto
Date/Time11/5/2013 at 10:53:39 PM

I've been doing a lot of reading, trying to learn about what to look for in cabinets--and I'm finding a lot of contradictory information. For example some people say that modern particle board is made to a higher standard than from years ago, with different glues and resins, and can withstand a certain degree of moisture compared to older types of particle board. Others disagree.

Some say plywood boxes are better and others say they are a sales tactic to get people to spend more on the cabinets.

So, I don't know what to believe, and I just wonder if there are product lines that are known to be durable, that can stand up to normal kitchen use--which often includes spills and drips (especially when kids are involved).

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MOJ Contracting in Aurora
Date/Time11/9/2013 at 4:52:04 PM


We have installed many custom kitchens over the years, and yes you get what you pay for. Most of the Ikea kitchens are made of a vinyl wrapped mdf doors. These are the least expensive doors you can get, depending on manufacturer, they can last a while (10 yrs +) or not as long.

Stained wood doors are very durable, again, providing that they are manufactured to a higher standard.

Now when you are talking about the cabinet box. You have 2 choices particle board or plywood. Plywood is more durable to moisture, but more costly.

The issue that you first raised is the deterioration of the cabinets around the sink. This is mostly due to the counter top and not the cabinets. With a laminate counter top and a drop in sink, there are many areas that water can infiltrate and slowly deteriorate the counter top and cabinet below. With a solid surface counter like granite, quartz etc, there is less likely water infiltration and therefore your cabinets are not getting eroded.

The biggest issue with kitchen is Budget. If you want a kitchen for $3000, don't expect it to last 10 yrs. Get a quality door, and quality hardware and your kitchen will stand up for many years.

Good luck with your renovations.



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Helen in Toronto
Date/Time11/9/2013 at 11:31:53 PM

My current kitchen has a solid surface countertop (Corion) and a drop in sink. The problem seems to be that when washing dishes, water dribbles over the edge of the counter and onto the doors below, leading to disintegration of the doors--I would like to avoid this by choosing doors that are more moisture proof.

And then there was the incident of the overflowing coffee pot etc. etc.

I have read that conversion varnish on the doors is the best if they are wood doors (is it the best?). Have also been reading about polyester wrapped mdf doors being superior to vinyl wrapped in terms of moisture strength and heat resistance.

I'm just trying to determine if there are any brands of stock cabinets that actually have some of these qualities--certainly I plan to spend more than $3000 on the actual cabinets. One brand I noticed is Cutler, which has polyester wrapped mdf doors, plywood reinforced cabinets. Not sure if there are other brands that might be recommended (have not found any reviews on the Cutler brand).

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Date/Time12/12/2013 at 5:53:23 PM

Hi Helen,

I would recommend to do water proof plywood cabinets for sink cabinet that is where majority of water damage is.

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Date/Time3/13/2014 at 6:56:00 PM


Finally you got the Kitchen or still doing research?

Call me on 647-866-7869 I will tell you where is the great deal going on in town.

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Melody in Woodbridge
Date/Time4/9/2014 at 6:23:36 AM

Beautiful and stylish kitchen cabinet are in demand now a days. But you need to designs as per the requirement and space.

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