How To Install Cabinet Door Hardware Quickly and Accurately

By Todd Fratzel on Cabinetry, Power Tools

Cabinet Hardware Template

Cabinet HardwareIn this post I’d like to share with you a great piece of advice on how to install cabinet door hardware quickly and accurately. Once you’ve spent thousands of dollars on new cabinets the last thing you want to do is ruin them by doing a bad job installing the hardware. Next time you need to install cabinet door hardware try this tip and you’ll be very happy with the results.

Build A Hardware Template

In this example I show you how to install standard knob pulls on cabinet doors. This same method works just as well with handle type cabinet hardware. You’ll just have to modify the template accordingly. The trick is to build yourself a simple wood template that makes it quick and easy to repeat the location of each piece of cabinet hardware.

Build A Simple Wood Template

Cabinet Hardware TemplateBuilding wood templates is a great way to recreate something over and over again with speed and accuracy. Anytime I have a home improvement project that involves some type of repetitive task I stop and try to develop a template to make my life easier. This cabinet door hardware template is very easy to build.

1. Cut a small square piece of plywood or OSB. The piece doesn’t need to be very large.

2. Attach some type of stop on two side. I used some 3/4″ pine, nailed and glued. Make sure you keep the stops square to each other.

3. Locate and drill a 1/4″ diameter hole. The hole should be located at the location you wish to install the knobs. If you chose a location that is the same distance up and to the side then this template will work for both left and right doors.

Use Cabinet Door Hardware Template

Using Cabinet Hardware TemplateOnce you’ve built the cabinet hardware template you can easily use it to drill all the holes for the new cabinet hardware. Hold the template so that the stops are tight against the side and bottom of the cabinet door. Use your drill to drill through the cabinet door at the hole location in your template. No need mark the location of each knob with this template. In the photo I’m holding the template on the left door. To do the right door all I have to do is rotate the template 90 degree clockwise and drill my hole. NOTE that only works if you place the hold the same distance up and to the side (45 degrees from the door corner).

So next time you need to install cabinet hardware on new cabinets I suggest you make a cabinet door hardware template. You’ll be very glad you did because it will save you time and make your work look great.

Buy A Cabinet Hardware Template

You could also buy a pre-made Cabinet Hardware Template from Amazon. The factory made templates are very good and inexpensive. Regardless, be sure you use some type of template so your cabinets will look great!

About the author

Todd Fratzel

I'm full time builder for a large construction company in New Hampshire. I run their design-build division that specializes in custom homes, commercial design-build projects and sub-divisions. I'm also a licensed civil and structural engineer with extensive experience in civil and structural design and home construction. My hope is that I can share my experience in the home construction, home improvement and home renovation profession with other builders and home owners. I'm also the Editor-in-Chief and Founder of Tool Box Buzz. Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions, suggestions or you'd like to inquire about advertising on this site.

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1 Comment

  1. Anonymous says:

    To make a dual purpose template that does both the left and right door and is not limited to the hole position being 45 degrees from the door corner use this modification. Move the 1 X edge pieces so they are centered on the plywood template. Now screw the edges to the plywood so the edge is revealed on both sides of the plywood. Your done! The template can be flipped either left or right so any hole position will be mirrored on the doors. This method can also be used for door handles with two holes.

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