The 1/4" MDF bottoms of these drawers are stapled to the drawer frames. The bottoms are not rigid enough to support contents without sagging. And they are so low to the cabinet frame that the sagging centers scrape and squeak against the cabinet face

My first inclination would be to glue cross-braces onto the bottom of the drawers, but there is no room for anything between the drawer bottom and the cabinet face. I could perhaps glue and staple cross-braces inside the drawer.

Another thought was to apply a lubricant to the bottom of the drawer. Is there something that would stick to MDF and be lubricious enough to stop the squeaking and not wear off?

Last idea was to get a very thin sheet of teflon or UHMW and glue that to the bottom of the drawer and/or the top of the cabinet frame where it is rubbing. What material would be best, and what adhesives would hold it to MDF? –

How can this scraping, or at least the squeaking, be mitigated without rebuilding the drawers?

See the scrape marks in the following photo

Sagging drawer bottom

  • 1
    the big problem with teflon is finding a glue that will stick to it :) – Jasen Dec 20 '20 at 1:45
  • are all drawers like this, or was this some quick fix in the past? Most drawers I know about have the bottom half an inch / 10mm higher than the sides, and are made of plywood of about the same strengh you describe here. – Marco Dec 20 '20 at 8:02
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    Get a piece of good quality stiff hardboard/masonite a little smaller than the drawer bottom, and glue it to the inside of the drawer. Be sure to rest the bottom on a flat surface and weigh down the inside while the glue sets. – Hot Licks Dec 20 '20 at 14:53
  • @Marco This was the original construction, and aside from this design-flaw/skimping the drawers are decent quality and were not inexpensive. – feetwet Dec 20 '20 at 18:03

You could use anti-friction tape.

The other thing you could consider is sheet metal. You could get 20g sheet metal and use that to make cross bridging. It might be rigid and thin enough to help support the bottom.

Another idea would be to split the interior drawer into two sections and use the drawer divider to pull up the bottom (either splitting the space side to side or back to front).

Outside of that you are better off rebuilding the drawer and using something reasonable as a drawer bottom. Hard to imagine 1/4 MDF being used as a drawer bottom - did they run out of cardboard?

  • 1
    LMAO – "did they run out of cardboard?" FYI: I found "Abrasion Resistant" UHMW tape that's 7 mils thick with a strong adhesive backer and put that on the lip of the cabinet face. It was easy and it's an improvement. – feetwet Dec 24 '20 at 18:36

you probably need something with greater rigidity than the MDF. eg plywood and also mount it higher,

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    This is really a comment – Alaska Man Dec 20 '20 at 1:52
  • 4
    No, this is a comment ` Use comments to ask for more information or suggest improvements. Avoid answering questions in comments.` – Jasen Dec 20 '20 at 1:58

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