I'm trying to cost out a new set of kitchen cabinets and drawers. A friend said he had decent wear resistance from his RTF laminate cabinet job. How does the RTF compare with plastic? We live in California. Cheapest is not always best when it comes to kitchen cabinets.
Cody B. ~ San Jose, California
Cody, you are correct when you say that "the cheapest way is not always the best way", and in my mind that applies to all aspects of home construction and remodeling. Fortunately, the Rigid Thermofoil(RTF) laminates which you are interested in for your cabinet refacing project can be both economical and durable. RTF laminates which are made to look like wood veneers or solid painted surfaces are also easy to clean and can be long lasting.
Oftentimes RTF laminates cost less than plastic laminates, but you may be limited by the available color options if you choose to use a RTF product. One advantage of the RTF laminates is that they can be molded to cover a raised-panel cabinet door, as opposed to plastic laminates which may only be able cover flat-panel door styles. So, the style of your kitchen cabinets may ultimately dictate what refacing options you have when choosing a laminate.
You may want to talk with a contractor in the San Jose area who specializes in cabinet refacing, as a thorough inspection of your cabinets may be necessary in order to choose the right laminate for the job. Good luck with your project and enjoy your new kitchen cabinets!