Types of Cabinets and Doors

First, you need to determine the type of cabinets and doors you have.

Frameless Cabinets

Frameless wood cabinet with inset door.
Frameless cabinet with inset door.

These types of cabinets lack a face frame around the door opening. When you look at the cabinet front, you will see the ends of the cabinet sides.

Frameless cabinet can have doors that are:

    • Full-Overlay Door: The door completely conceals the cabinet frame.
    • Half-Overlay Door: The door partially overlaps the cabinet frame.
  • Inset or Flush Door: The door is set into the opening, flush with the side frame.

Face Frame Cabinets

Face frame cabinet with overlay door.
Overlay door on face frame cabinet.

Face frame cabinets have a solid wood frame attached to the cabinet around the door opening. The frame serves to cover the ends of the cabinet sides and add strength to the cabinet.

Face frame cabinets can have doors that:

    • Overlay Door: The door overlaps the face frame. Common overlays are full overlay, 1/2”, 5/8”, or 1 3/8” overlay.
    • Inset/Lipped Door: The door has a rabbet (groove open on one side) cut around the edges, so it’s partially inset into the door opening. The most common inset width is 3/8”.
  • Flush Door: The door is completely set into the face frame, so that it’s flush with the surface.

Types of Cabinet Hinges

Now that you’ve determined what type of cabinet and door you have, you can choose the correct type of hinge for the look and function you want. Read on to find out the most common types of hinges.

Editorial Contributors
avatar for Danny Lipford

Danny Lipford


Danny Lipford is a home improvement expert and television personality who started his remodeling business, Lipford Construction, at the age of 21 in Mobile, Alabama. He gained national recognition as the host of the nationally syndicated television show, Today's Homeowner with Danny Lipford, which started as a small cable show in Mobile. Danny's expertise in home improvement has also led him to be a contributor to popular magazines and websites and the go-to source for advice on everything related to the home. He has made over 200 national television appearances and served as the home improvement expert for CBS's The Early Show and The Weather Channel for over a decade. Danny is also the founder of 3 Echoes Content Studio, TodaysHomeowner.com, and Checking In With Chelsea, a décor and lifestyle blog.

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