Sunday, 4 November 2012

Our new formaldehyde-free cabinets are here, yay!

After a few months of deliberation, we decided to go with custom kitchen cabinets, instead of IKEA. The main reason we wanted custom cabinets was to make sure that they would not contain added formaldehyde which is an indoor air pollutant and carcinogen. The downside of the custom cabinets is the price tag. They are way more expensive than IKEA and we could sure use the money elsewhere. However, considering that the kitchen cabinets will be the largest furniture in our house, will be part of our living room space and will last a long time, we decided to make the one-time investment.

We hired Rob, a small cabinet maker in Guelph, and requested the cabinets be made with PureBond plywood, (no added formaldehyde),  as well as 0-VOC glue. We also supplied the 0-VOC water based paint for the cabinets that we purchased at Homestead House We chose their Chantilly Lace eggshell water based paint.

We again encountered, as so many times during our renovation, the disapproval of our 'green' choices by a contractor. While Rob was great to work with, and understood our priorities, the painter he used to paint the finished cabinets was hesitant to use the water based paint we supplied. He would not guarantee the work and warned us that we would have to repaint the cabinets much more often than if we used a laquer/acrylic finish.  We took our chances and went with the water based paint anyways to avoid off-gassing.

The cabinets have arrived and we love them. The paint also looks great.  It gives it a nice matt finish that is unlike the high shine acrylic finish used on the IKEA cabinets. Not sure how well it will hold up to wear and tear, but having no off-gasing in our home is worth the extra effort and care that they might require.


Rob is unloading the newly made cabinets.

The cabinet installation is at full speed.

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