Outdoor kitchens are quite different from their indoor counterparts. Although indoor and outdoor kitchens share similar accessories and features, outdoor kitchens must be furnished with the right materials so that they can survive harsh weather elements.
There are lots of benefits related to having an outdoor kitchen, which includes fewer utility bills, reduced smell, cleaner homes and great for entertaining guests as well as your family members. However, finding the best cabinetry for your outdoor kitchen can be a challenge.
You need to know the characteristics of a good kitchen cabinet in order to avoid the frustration that comes with selecting low-quality kitchen cabinets.
In this guide, we are going to show you how to choose a good kitchen cabinet as well as the characteristics of high-quality outdoor kitchen cabinets to assist you in selecting the best cabinets for your outdoor kitchen.
What does a good outdoor kitchen cabinet have?
Kitchen cabinets are very important features and aspects of any kitchen as they can help transform the look, feel, functionality and value of a home.
However, the quality of your kitchen cabinets is more than just its aesthetic look; it is essentially a function of its construction methods, craftsmanship, materials, and finish used in its manufacturing process.
There is a variation in all these elements, which results in a corresponding range of cabinetry quality and options.
When it comes to finding quality outdoor kitchen cabinets, there are some factors you have to look for or consider. Some of these factors are discussed below.
Supreme durability (cabinetry materials)
Since your kitchen is located in a place that is open to the elements of nature, it is important to select outdoor kitchen materials that are tough and able to withstand the harsh weather conditions as well as the wear and tear from daily usage. If you installed a regular PVC or wood cabinetry, you would see your outdoor kitchen cabinets deteriorate or get damaged by exposure to rain and sunshine over time.
When it comes to outdoor kitchen cabinets durability, the performance and longevity of the cabinets depend on its construction materials. You can rely on materials that has inbuilt sunscreen or stainless steel cabinets that are highly resistant to corrosion and won’t change their shape like wood.
There are other materials used for cabinets includes solid wood, medium density fiberboard (MDF), particle board, and plywood.
Plywood is believed to be the best option for the cabinet boxes, but solid wood is used on the face frame. Particle board is also used for cabinet boxes and other cabinetry components. However, it is more prone to damages from water and other liquids. It also emits formaldehyde vapors depending on the content of the bonding agent used to bond the wood particles and is not recommended for an outdoor kitchen.
Another wood product is the Medium Density Fiberboard (MDF). It is made of wood fibers that are pressed and bonded together. It is very heavy and is also prone to damages from the water just like the particle board. So if you are going for cabinets with these materials, make sure the boxes are sturdy and thick instead of unstable and thin.
You should also consider the cabinets with some kind of box reinforcement like I-beam braces or corner braces and a solid hardwood frame (if you want framed cabinets). Cabinets with solid front frame, thick panels, and reinforced, will make a more sturdy and rigid box with little or no chance of the box going out of shape.
Make sure the bottom or floor panels are using thick, solid frame to support the weight of the drawer contents.
Easy to use, maintain and clean
Like I said before, outdoor kitchen cabinets are exposed to sun, wind, rain, dust and more, which gives them a higher risk of becoming dirty and unsightly. Since an outdoor kitchen is a spectacular entertaining space, your kitchen cabinets should be clean at all times.
A good outdoor cabinet will feature materials that are resistant to stains and easy to clean after each cooking session without spending hours.
Bug proof Kitchen Cabinets
Hungry insects and bugs may infest and damage outdoor kitchen cabinets, however they will not infest high-quality cabinets. High-quality kitchen cabinets must be, not only able to withstand harsh weather condition, but also resistant to insect and bugs that can shorten its lifespan.
Most of the materials used for making high-quality outdoor kitchen cabinet have no organic compounds that attract bugs and termites, so you can enjoy your kitchen without the fear of termite.
Good quality finish
Whether you go for wood or metal cabinets, a good quality finish will not only make your outdoor kitchen cabinets look nice and appealing, but it will also help to preserve and protect your investment. There are a lot of temperature changes, greases, and others that come in contact with the cabinets especially in a functional and hardworking kitchen .
In addition to termite infestation, the occasional spill of hot water, sauce, or vinegar can destroy your cabinets over long period of time.
Having a good quality cabinet finish will help prevent damages and ensure your outdoor kitchen cabinets can withstand these assaults. Some of the components you should look for in quality cabinet finish are:
Lacquer or catalyzed varnish: This finish enhances the durability of the cabinets, allowing them to withstand the harsh weather condition that they are subjected to. Note that non-catalyzed varnish is more prone to damages and aren’t as durable.
High solids content varnish: This finish has more solid particles that help to build coating thickness within its coating system. These solids provide a long-lasting shield over the material (wood and stain) beneath it.
UV protection: Finishes with components that are resistant to fading from ultraviolet (UV) light are better than the ones that don’t. Your outdoor kitchen would be exposed to a lot of sunshine, so going for a finish with UV protection that resists fading is your best bet.
We hope this outdoor kitchen cabinet guide can help you decide on the materials, look, and feel of your outdoor kitchen.