IKEA Kitchen Cabinets: Everything You Need to Know

Why IKEA, Sweden’s beloved home goods retailer, is a go-to resource for kitchen cabinets

galley ikea kitchen

(Above) Lavanya and Regis’ Sweeten renovation

Kitchen cabinets make up a large portion of a kitchen remodel budget. Happily, IKEA offers popular cabinet options that are less expensive than many traditional alternatives. IKEA’s cabinets are based on a flexible system that allows you to add components as needed.

Below, Sweeten outlines key features of IKEA cabinets, to help you decide if they’re right for your kitchen renovation.

Sweeten matches home renovation projects with vetted general contractors, offering advice, support, and up to $50,000 in renovation financial protection— at no cost to you.

How IKEA’s SEKTION cabinet system works

Base cabinets

Base cabinets are mounted on the floor. They hold the countertop and the sink. IKEA base cabinets are 30 inches high and 24.75 inches deep. After adding legs and a countertop, they reach 36 inches, which is the standard countertop height for U.S. Kitchens.

A complete IKEA base cabinet consists of the cabinet box, drawers and drawer fronts, and inner drawers and fronts. Drawer organizers are optional.

Wall cabinets

Wall cabinets are mounted on the wall and are attached to the studs. They hold plates and food items. Wall cabinets are usually mounted 20 inches above the base cabinets. Most of IKEA’s wall cabinets are 15 inches deep. A few of IKEA’s wall cabinets are 24 inches deep. These wall cabinets are typically mounted over refrigerators.

A complete IKEA wall cabinet consists of the cabinet box, doors, hinges, and shelves. Shelf inserts are optional.

High cabinets

High cabinets are mounted on the floor. They are intended for pantry items or small appliancesIKEA’s high cabinets are narrow—15 to 30 inches wide, with 24 inches being most common. High cabinets are either 80 inches or 90 inches tall. 

A complete IKEA high cabinet consists of the cabinet, fronts, and shelves. Doors and drawers are often included.

Drawers, shelves, and dividers

MAXIMERA and FORVARA soft-closing drawers and dividers come with the cabinets.

UTRUSTA shelves made either of fiberboard or glass. Shelves are included. The UTRUSTA line comes with pegs that fit into the sides of SEKTION cabinets to hold up the shelves.

ikea drawers

(Above) Roxana and Gabriel’s Sweeten renovation

What are IKEA cabinets made of?

IKEA cabinet boxes are made of fiberboard and melamine foil. Cabinet doors and drawer fronts are made of fiberboard. They are covered in melamine foil, paint, wood, or glass.

IKEA cabinet boxes

Fiberboard (or MDF, for medium-density fiberboard) is an engineered wood made from wood chips and resins. Wood chips are pressed together with heat and high pressure to form boards.

IKEA cabinet and drawer fronts

Currently, IKEA offers 18 cabinet and drawer front styles. The cabinet front profile options include slab, beveled, beadboard, and Shaker. 

IKEA has one natural wood veneer cabinet front: the TORHAMN fronts are covered in real ash wood veneer.

IKEA fronts are either a solid color, simulated wood, or real wood grain. Except for white, the solid colors veer toward darker or earthen tones: gray, brown, black, or green. The style and texture of the fronts affect the price. 

    Quality: Are IKEA cabinets good?

    IKEA cabinets are well-designed and built to be precise and long-lasting. All fasteners that hold the cabinets together are internal and invisible. Euro-style hinges on the doors are soft-closing and hidden. The drawers are also silently self-closing. IKEA saves you money through efficient mass-production, and by using engineered wood materials that cost much less than solid natural wood. 

    SEKTION kitchen cabinets have a 25-year limited warranty. This warranty covers all components of a SEKTION cabinet system. The policy warrants against defects in materials and workmanship. IKEA will either repair or replace any defective part of the SEKTION system.

    Take note: IKEA states that its natural wood and light lacquered (painted) surfaces may yellow with age. As a result, exposure to light will contribute to this aging.

    One key to maintaining the IKEA SEKTION system is regular maintenance. Specifically, you’ll need to protect your SEKTION cabinets from excessive humidity. Fiberboard can swell when it absorbs moisture. You ahouls void letting coffee makers or dishwashers steam under or against SEKTION cabinets. Also, make sure to quickly wipe up any spills in your cabinets.

    ikea cabinets

    (Above) Sally and Ross’ Sweeten renovation

    IKEA kitchen cabinets installation

    Self-installation

    Fortunately, IKEA kitchen cabinets are easy to install. The cabinets come flat-packed in cardboard boxes. Then, homeowners can either pick up the boxes at the store or arrange for at-home delivery. 

    Clear picture-oriented instructions guide the installation. To complete installation, you’ll need simple tools, like a hammer and power drill/driver. Although the process is streamlined, it is still a large-scale project. You’ll also need to set time aside—often, many hours—for assembly. For example, even just unboxing the cabinets and disposing of the cardboard will add to your time commitment.

    Professional installation

    Some IKEA stores offer professional installation services. IKEA installers will deliver the cabinets. The installers will then assemble and install the cabinets, doors, drawers, fittings, and handles.

    How much do IKEA kitchen cabinets cost?

    Individual cabinet costs

    IKEA base cabinets generally cost between $200 and $500. Wall cabinets cost between $200 and $400. High cabinets cost between $200 and $600.

    Full kitchen cabinet costs

    The design industry uses a 10’ x 10’ kitchen as a standard for measuring cabinet costs. This hypothetical kitchen includes cabinets, door and drawer fronts, drawers, shelves, hinges, cover panels, toe-kicks, and legs. The cost does not include countertops, handles, sinks, lighting, or appliances.

    IKEA kitchen cabinets for a full 10’ x 10’ kitchen range from about $1,100 to about $3,500. The average cost is about $2,350. This cost does not include taxes, delivery, or installation. So whether your kitchen is showing its age or the style just isn’t your taste, IKEA cabinets can help stretch your budget.

    Feeling inspired to use IKEA cabinets in your kitchen renovation project? Share your project with Sweeten and we’ll match you with expert contractors who specialize in IKEA cabinetry!

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    Sweeten handpicks the best general contractors to match each project’s location, budget, scope, and style. Follow the blog, Sweeten Stories, for renovation ideas and inspiration and when you’re ready to renovate, start your renovation with Sweeten.

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