How to Remove Kitchen Cabinets

If you’re getting new cabinets and want to give your old cabinets away to a friend or donate them, you’ll have to take them down safely. Taking them down carefully takes a bit more effort than using a sledgehammer to tear them down, but it’s worth it when you can let someone in need reuse the cabinets.


  1. Having a helper is a smart idea; cabinets are not light.
  2. A drill
  3. In some cases, you’ll need a voltage detector.

Before you begin

  • Of course, the first step is to empty the cabinets and drawers.
  • If you have cabinet lighting, turn off the circuit breaker.


  • Remove the cabinet doors.
  • Remove the drawers.
  • Check to ensure there is no current going to the cabinet lights.
  • Remove the lights by detaching the wires.

Detach cabinets from each other

Your cabinets aren’t just attached to the wall; they are attached to one another. Usually, two cabinets are attached to one another before they are attached to the wall.

  1.  Locate the screws that are holding the cabinets together.
  2.  Usually, there are one to two on the top inside and one to two on the bottom.
  3.  Remove the screws and set them aside in a safe place if you plan to give the cabinets away.

Remove cabinets from the wall

This is when the extra set of hands is helpful.

  • Look for the two top screws inside each cabinet and remove them.
  • Look for the bottom screws; there are usually two screws holding the bottom in place. However, there is sometimes a third screw centered between the other two.
  • Remove the screws on each side before removing the one in the center.
  • Have your helper hold the cabinet in place as you remove the screws.
  • Gently take the cabinet down.
  • Repeat for each cabinet.

Tape the bag with the screws to the cabinets once you have them down so that they don’t get lost.

Depending on how many cabinets you have, taking them down is something that most can do in one day. The job goes much faster and is much safer when you have someone to help you take the cabinets down.