I am installing kitchen cabinets and we are installing engineered wood after the cabinets are installed, floor installer said to just go right ahead and lay the cabinets over the bare concrete, which doesn't see right, anyway, the engineered floors will be approximately 5/8" to 1/2" in height, what would be the best course of action with this situation. You help is greatly appreciated and with your answer, would you provide as much detail as possible on the exact procedure and process, please and thank you.

  • Every kitchen I remodeled, that has floors put in last.... I curse those people. Newer cabinets almost never fit in the floor cutout,shim the cabinets too much, toe kick doesn't cover the gap or is to short. What if one day you want to remove a base cabinet? Patch the floor? We always installed floor first, then cabinets. Damage floor during cabinet installation? Never! Cabinet installers should protect the floor while they are working.
    – Gunner
    Commented Jun 11, 2020 at 13:06

2 Answers 2


Find out exactly how tall the floor will be, and use spacers (maybe pieces of the flooring) to raise the cabinets the same amount. Ideally, install them after the floor is done. Otherwise, try to have the flooring extend under the cabinets. Your carpenter will probably install quarter round trim at the base of the cabinets to cover the seam where the cabinets and the floor intersect either way you do it.

  • Shoe molding in the kitchen? That's a hack for a job not properly done. That is what the toekick is for.
    – Gunner
    Commented Jun 11, 2020 at 13:08
  • I see your point, as the floor should go up to the edge of the cabinet, but I still think it gives a more finished look. Commented Jun 13, 2020 at 15:13

From my experiences with remodeling my kitchen, baths, and looking at others, the floor is done last. Cabinets that were removed and the ones that were installed were installed on the bare plywood or concrete slab. Shims were used to make sure the top of the cabinets were flush and level. None were used to bring the cabinet up to a pre-determined floor height.
Floors were the final item to install and only with a 1/8 or 1/4" gap to the cabinet rough toe kick. After floor was installed, the finished cabined baseboards were installed covering the gap.
My concern if the floors was laid first. Who is responsible for the damage to the floor during the remaining constructions, cabinets, counter tops, sink, painting, other finishing work.
For bringing the base of the cabinet level with the floor height, Is there some un-written rule that a counter top must be exact "xx inches" from the floor. All the various types of countertop have different thicksness.

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