I plan to rebuild the kitchen, installing new cabinets as well as a new floor (either wood or laminate).

Should I lay the floor first and then mount the cabinets on top? Or should I mount cabinets to the subfloor first, and then lay the new floor around them?

Since I also intend to remove one wall from the kitchen, the actual positions of the cabinets will change, so I intend to fully remove both cabinets and floor before I do anything. Also, I intend to do as much as possible by myself, without contracting out.

  • I don't know what the "standard" is, but there is one pretty big downfall for doing the floor first. If you decide in 5 years you want to redo the flooring, but you still like the cabinets, you will have to cut the flooring flush with the bottom of the cabinet to lay new flooring unless you lay the flooring on top of the old. – user1289451 Nov 7 '16 at 20:53
  • I once put a floating floor down around the cabinets. Years later, I realized that the dishwasher was locked in place and I would have to cut out part of the counter or pull up the floor to remove it. If you put the floor down last, make sure you put it everywhere there isn't a cabinet installed such as where your range will be. Even if you don't trap anything by leaving these bare, it will be a mess and trap crud and dust like crazy. – JimmyJames Nov 8 '16 at 14:52

If you plan on doing both, I would suggest having the old cabinets replaced first, then having the flooring done.

This typically keeps the various contractors out of each other's way, and allows the project to progress smoothly, and should you decide to change your flooring down the line, you won't have to remove the cabinets.

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  • Okay, good point, but some details I just added would not make this solution possible. The positions of the cabinets will change. – Octopus Nov 7 '16 at 21:05
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