How to Recycle Cabinet Doors

Kitchen and bathroom cabinets are replaced often, approximately every 10 to 15 years in some homes. Unlike most cabinet boxes, which are often made of particle board or plywood, the doors are usually made of hard wood. Cabinet doors are sturdy and make excellent materials for reuse. Remove your old cabinet doors, or find mismatched doors at a home reuse store. Choose the cabinet door project that fits your home d├ęcor. Learn how to recycle cabinet doors.


  1. Image titled Recycle Cabinet Doors Step 1
    Consider donating your entire section of cabinets to a thrift, Habitat for Humanity store or home re-use store. Many non-profit stores provide home improvement options to people with low income. Check your town for home reuse stores or Goodwill stores, so that your cabinets can have a second life in a new home.
    • Your gift to a non-profit thrift store is likely to be tax deductible. Ask for a receipt when you deliver your cabinets. Then, report them when you itemize your taxes.
  2. Image titled Recycle Cabinet Doors Step 2
    Create a rolling cart from a small cabinet. Keep the cabinet doors securely fitted to the box. Then, install casters on the bottom.
    • You can use a rolling cabinet in a craft room, garage, child's room or other home environment with smooth floors. Store crafts, decorations, video games and other things that often look like clutter. Choose whether you want it to open from the top or the side.
  3. Image titled Recycle Cabinet Doors Step 3
    Remove your cabinet doors from the cabinet box with a screwdriver. If you plan to use the entire door, make sure to be careful not to gouge the doors when you unscrew them. Remove the hinges and handles from the back with a screwdriver and a putty knife, if necessary.
  4. Image titled Recycle Cabinet Doors Step 4
    Make a cabinet door into a chalkboard. Buy black or green chalkboard paint at a hardware or home improvement store. Sand the center portion of your cabinet door and paint a chalkboard square with a paintbrush.
    • Tape the frame of the door with painter's tape, so that you can protect its original finish. You can also cover the chalkboard interior and paint the frame a different color.
    • Some people choose to paint a chalkboard onto a cabinet door when it is still installed on the wall, for menus and to-do lists. Others choose to remove the board and hinges and hang the new chalkboard from a wall or place it on a table.
  5. Image titled Recycle Cabinet Doors Step 5
    Create a serving tray from a cabinet door. Sand the entire surface of the cabinet door with a fine-grit sandpaper. Paint it 1 color or in a more intricate design.
    • Cover the surface with 2 or more coats of lacquer, to ensure that moisture will not seep into the hard wood.
    • Screw door handles into the shorter sides of the door. You will be able to carry the tray using these decorative handles. Look for ornate handles at home improvement stores or online.
  6. Image titled Recycle Cabinet Doors Step 6
    Turn long vertical cabinets into horizontal coat hooks. Remove the door handles and hinges. Then, sand and repaint.
    • Install coat hooks in 2 or more places along the cabinet horizontally. Drill the coat rack into the wall or install picture-hanging implements in the back. Make sure to use a stud finder, so that it is secure with the extra weight of the coats.
  7. Image titled Recycle Cabinet Doors Step 7
    Use a cabinet door as a picture frame. Print a photo in a large size and cut it out so that it fits the interior of the door. Affix the photo with acid-free craft glue in an even layer.
    • You can keep the original wood for a rustic look. You can also repaint the cabinet door frame before you place the picture inside for a custom look.
  8. Image titled Recycle Cabinet Doors Step 8
    Remove the center of the cabinet door to make a craft or jewelry hanger. This may be the best option if the door frame is hard wood, but the center is plywood.
    • Remove it with a putty knife and hammer. Sand off any rough edges. Buy chicken wire or smaller wire netting. Extend it across the back of your frame until it is taut. Staple it into place with a heavy duty staple gun.
  9. Image titled Recycle Cabinet Doors Step 9
    Insert a layer of cork to make a cork board. Measure the cork board to the correct size. Spread a layer of wood glue on top of the cabinet door's interior.
    • Place the cork on top of the center section. Hang your cork board. Once dry you can affix reminders and other information with pins or tacks.

Things You'll Need

  • Thrift store
  • Screwdriver
  • Casters
  • Chalkboard paint
  • Paintbrushes
  • Sandpaper
  • Putty knife
  • Lacquer
  • Paint
  • Decorative door handles
  • Metal coat hooks
  • Craft glue
  • Photo
  • Chicken wire
  • Staple gun
  • Staples
  • Cork
  • Wood glue

Article Info

Categories: Reduce Recycle and Reuse