To attach under-the-counter appliances to a kitchen cabinet, we drill holes through the bottom shelf of that cabinet. Bolts run through those holes. For example, clock-radios, coffee makers, iPad holders, and over-the-range microwaves.

When later removing such items, we are left with unsightly holes left in that bottom shelf.

➥ Is there a way to plug or cover such holes?

I have heard of thin yet strong plastic patches with adhesive on one side that can applied like a Band-Aid, sticking to the remaining shelf while preventing anything from falling through or snagging the hole. But I have no idea what such a product might be called, or where to purchase.


"Shelf Paper" (which may actually be plastic, or plastic coated) covering the whole shelf is common. Also known as "contact paper", particularly the "adhesive" version (contact adhesive...)

Since it covers the whole shelf, it's less likely to be peeled up at the edges than a patch just over the hole would be. They make many "cheerful" patterns, but these days if I use it at all I prefer plain white, but that's an opinion. The assumption here is that the shelf itself is not anything special that you would care about covering it up, you just want a clean, smooth, easy to clean surface on it.

  • The shelf paper that I’ve seen commonly sold is too flimsy. A finger or utensil could easily punch through. Did you have a tougher product in mind? If so, can you give an example? – Basil Bourque Sep 15 '20 at 20:05
  • If you have "bolt holes" that you can poke a finger through you must have had some really heavy appliances bolted to your cabinets. Exactly none of the microwaves, etc. I've ever bolted to a cabinet resulted in a hole even my pinky fingers could go into. If you are going to poke holes with utensils rather than store stuff lying on the shelf, then of course you can make holes where the bolts were. Generally not a problem if you are storing the sorts of things we normally store on cabinet shelves, in a normal manner. If you have a higher level of abuse in mind, consider e.g. Formica® laminate. – Ecnerwal Sep 15 '20 at 23:32

I suggest you look into small round plastic plugs that you can find online, at home centers, and woodworking outlets. These snap into the holes and can be found in multiple colors and sizes to match the application.

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