Furniture Cabinet Hardware types and Buying Guide

Cabinet Handles
Cabinet Knobs
Oversized/Appliance Pulls
Cup Pulls
Drop Bail Pulls
European Bar Pulls
Ring Pulls
Recessed Pulls
Finger Pulls
Pendant Pulls
Edge Pull
Cabinet Latches
Label Holders
Decorative Keys
Backplates
Cabinet Hinges
Drawer Slides
Cabinet Hardware Accessories

The Many Different Types of Cabinet Hardware

THE MANY DIFFERENT TYPES OF CABINET HARDWARE

You may be starting a home remodeling project or looking to update pieces of hardware in your kitchen, and you might be wondering where to start. There are a variety of different types of hardware to consider when making your decision and there are a plethora of styles and sizes. Learning a few hardware basics will help you begin the process of selecting hardware. There are several main categories that most kitchen hardware pieces fall into: cabinet knobs, cabinet pulls, and cabinet latches.

Cabinet Knobs

turnstyle designs cabinet knobs

Knobs are usually attached to cabinet doors using a single screw or point of contact with the drawer. They can be made out of various materials from solid brass to glass. Knobs are commonly manufactured out of brass, zinc or die cast, stainless steel, and bronze. Other options include the trendy crystal knobs and natural stone knobs. If you choose to go with a square knob, higher quality hardware will be designed so that the knob will not shift or rotate over time.

Cabinet Pulls and Handles

Unlike cabinet knobs, cabinet pulls, also known as cabinet handles, are attached to the cabinet door by two or more screws. When choosing cabinet pulls, it’s important to know the center-to-center measurement.This is typically the distance from one screw hole to the other. This measurement will determine the size of the pull you need. Pulls come in a variety of sizes from 5 inches to 12 inches. You can use a variety of sizes within a home, but we advise our clients to stay within similar size proportions.  If you go with 2 smaller handles on a 33” drawer, it’s more of a country or traditional look, as opposed to one long 12” handle which is a bit more contemporary. Choosing the right cabinet handle for your home is usually based on aesthetic preferences and personal choice. 

armac martin cup pull

Cup Pulls

Cup handles are designed for use on drawers and they get their name from the recessed grip that resembles a half cup shape. This hardware has a unique mounting method sometimes using mounting poles rather than screws. The pull is typically mounted with the open side facing down, which only allows for a drawer to be opened by pulling from the bottom of the handle. Cup pulls are not just stuck in the traditional design style, they can be traditional, rustic, or contemporary – they come in all styles.

Cabinet Latches

People often use cabinet latches in the home for a special function – a pantry or china cabinet you don’t access all the time. It serves to highlight a location in your kitchen but doesn’t have to be exceptionally functional. People tend to go with latches as an aesthetic choice for completing an overall look.

This will give you a good overview of what may fit your needs, but the best way to know what will work for you is to come into the showroom and explore the design styles we have on display for yourself. At Premium Hardware we offer complimentary consultations to help you narrow down and select the right hardware for your home.

Cabinet Hardware Buying Guide

Whether you have new cabinetry or you’re updating an old look, there are many cabinet hardware options to help you get the results you want. Hinges, knobs and pulls are available for every budget, so our buying guide serves as a starting point for finding the cabinet hardware that’s a great fit for your home.Save Item

Cabinet Hardware Buying Guide

Before You Begin

Before you begin shopping for new cabinetry hardware, be aware of your project timeline. Some special order pieces require several days for delivery.

If you are choosing new cabinetry, it’s a good idea to take a sample of your finish directly to the hardware department and select new knobs or pulls on the same day. This allows plenty of time in your schedule to get the hardware you really want.

Good to Know

Changing your cabinet’s knobs and pulls is a fast and inexpensive way to give your kitchen a new look.

Choosing the Right Cabinet Hardware

Cabinet Hardware Buying Guide Knobs and Pulls

Replacing your cabinet hardware is an affordable way to upgrade your kitchen, bathroom or living space. With numerous shapes, styles, and finishes you can customize your look on a budget and in a short amount of time.

Knobs are handles mounted to the exterior of doors and drawers with a single screw or bolt.  Some knobs have screws built-in and are easier to install than ones with separate screws.  Knobs look great when used with a back plate or alone. You can find knobs in many different shapes:

  • Round, Globe or Oval
  • Mushroom
  • Square or Rectangular
  • Octangular
  • Novelty

Pulls serve the same function as knobs but occupy more space – which means more impact on the appearance of the cabinet. Pulls are available:

  • Arched
  • Ring
  • Bar
  • Cup (with a recess to place your fingers)
  • Bail (hinged on the sides)
  • Rectangular, Square, or other shapes
  • Novelty
Good to Know

Screw length could vary upon installation due to width of cabinet drawer box and drawer front. Be sure to account for this and to measure properly to ensure you get the correct fit.

Style and Finish

Cabinet Hardware Style and Finish, Pulls

Style is the most common characteristic when shopping for hardware. You will want to pick a style you like, and one that works with the rest of your decor.

  • Traditional – Traditional hardware has a more ornate and classic look. Ranging anywhere from farmhouse to antique to rustic cabinet hardware, this style is more detailed and has more embellishments.
  • Contemporary – With clean lines and sharp, minimalistic look contemporary or modern cabinet hardware is simple and understated. When using a contemporary look, stainless steel is the most common finish.
  • Transitional – Combining traditional and modern cabinet hardware, transitional allows you to mix elements of both styles for a personalized look.
  • Eclectic – If you are seeking a more informal and fun look, these unique cabinet knobs and hardware allow you the most personalization.

Once you have found your style and shape, you can choose a finish. When selecting a finish, consider that you will want them to be cohesive with rest of the area, so consider other appliances and pieces of furniture. The most common finishes are:

  • Gold, Brass, Copper, Nickel, or Bronze
  • Stainless Steel
  • Distressed
  • Chrome
  • Black
  • Brown, White, Blue, or other colors

When choosing the finish for your hardware, think about what style will look best in your home. If your style is traditional, brushed finishes, polished brass, nickel or pewter will complement your décor. If you have a more contemporary décor, choose finishes with an enameled or high-gloss-metal shine.

For extra flair, you can also find select hardware made with acrylicglassceramicwoodetc…

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Cabinet Back Plates

Cabinet Hardware Buying Guide Back Plate

Backplate is a piece of finished metal that rests between the door and hardware. Back plates help protect the cabinet’s surface, cover existing holes in the cabinetry or to enhance decorative hardware.

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Cabinet Door Catches and Latches

Spring Roller Catch

Cabinet Door Catches are meant for doors without self-closing hinges to keep cabinet doors secure against the frame, usually with a magnet or roller.

  • Magnetic catches are the most widely used catch and work with a metal plate mounted on the cabinet door that adheres to a magnet mounted on the frame.
  • Spring Roller Catches (pictured) traditionally have one or two rollers set close together on the cabinet frame and a catch mounted on the door, closing when the rollers hook on the strike plate.

Cabinet Door Latches hold a cabinet or door closed until the latch is released and are a great option for families with pets or children.

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Hinges

Hinges attach the cabinet door to the frame. The number of hinges you need depends on the height and weight of the door.

  • Use two hinges for doors less than 40 inches high and less than 11 pounds.
  • Use three hinges for doors 40-60 inches high and 13-20 pounds.
  • Use four hinges for doors 60-80 inches high and 29-33 pounds.
  • Use five hinges for doors 80-85 inches high and 40-48 pounds.

Two types of hinge installations are available:

  • Concealed (Mortise) Hinges – Permanent installation hinges that are attached inside the cabinet door and frame, best used for inset doors.
  • Decorative (Non-mortise) Hinges – Do not require placement into the cabinetry and simply fasten with screws.

There are a few other features to consider when selecting hinges.

  • Adjustable hinges allow for different overlay closure.
  • Self-closing hinges include a spring that pulls the door closed when the door is close to the cabinet, which ensures cabinet doors stay closed. 
  • Soft-close hinges are available on some concealed hinges where a built-in mechanism softly closes the cabinet door, making a kitchen quieter by preventing the slamming of cabinet doors.
Good to Know

Hinges are specified for use on left- or right-hand doors. Some are specified for use with framed or frameless cabinetry. If you’re not sure what you have, snap several pictures or take a sample with you for shopping accuracy.

Hinge Construction

Cabinet Hardware Buying Guide Hinge Construction

Hinges are composed of four parts:

  1. Frame wing – attaches to the frame
  2. Door wing – attaches to the door
  3. Knuckle – connects the frame wing and door wing
  4. Pin – holds the hinge together

Types of Hinges

Cabinet Hardware Buying Guide Types of Hinges

European or Frameless Hinges (pictured):

  • The most popular choice for full-overlay and inset doors, although they are usable on face-frame cabinets as well.
  • Offer ease of installation and can easily support heavier doors.
  • Adjust to align and level cabinet doors.

Face Frame Hinges:

  • Variable Overlay hinges work on doors that completely overlay the frame and do not have a cut out on the back.
  • Partial Wraparound hinges have a large surface area that improves stability on flush, inset or overlay doors.
  • 3/8-inch Inset hinges work on doors that overlay the frame and have a cut out on the back edge.
  • H-style hinges look like the letter “H”. One side attaches to the frame and the other attaches to the flush mount door.

3/8-inch Offset H Hinges:

  • Provides support and smooth operation for offset doors.

Butterfly Hinges

  • For use on flush doors.
  • Each wing mounts to the outside surfaces of the cabinet door and frame.

T-style Hinges:

  • Look like the letter “T” with the vertical piece attaching to the doorframe and the horizontal piece attaching to the door.

Full-Inset Pin hinges (Butt Hinges):

  • For doors completely flush with the face of the cabinet.
  • Mount recessed or work surface-mounted on face frame cabinets.

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Good to Know

Take a sample of your current knobs, pulls and hinges to the store when shopping for replacements. This ensures you find the perfect fit.

Drawer Slides

Self-closing drawer slides

Drawer slides are available in light, medium and heavy designations depending on the weight of your drawer. Keep in mind that side-mount hardware is more durable than a monorail, or center-bottom-mount slide. Bearings and rollers create a smoother motion, while full-extension slides are perfect for providing access to every inch of the drawer. Before shopping for drawer slides, you must know the slide length and drawer length needed.

Types of Drawer Slides include:

  • Mini ball-bearing drawer slides, which may require a ¼-inch mortise in the drawer side for installation.
  • European-style self-closing side-mount drawer slides, which have a stop to prevent drawers from sliding out completely.
  • Full-extension, self-closing drawer slides, which use the maximum length of your drawer.
  • Basic side-mount drawer slides, which use surface installation on face-frame cabinets.

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