I'm about to purchase a set of kit set kitchen units, and I have a question about the difference between thermoformed vinyl coating on the cupboard doors etc, vs melamine coating.

The difference in price (in New Zealand) is substantial, around 40% cheaper for melamine and in the same colour. It seems like there must be a significant difference in quality to warrant that much of a price difference across the board of all their products... Can anyone explain the difference?

Background on our situation is we want to keep the kitchen cheap yet make it look flash and new, and probably won't own the house for more than five years at most.

2 Answers 2


Melamine doors are square cut. An have edge strip glued on (you see a line where it's glued)

Vinyl doors are wrapped in vinyl Allowing them to have patterns on the door. An round edges.

Melamine doors dont quite look as good in my option. But they are cheaper an still look good. With the right colour an handles they will look good.

You also have tho option of 2-pac painted doors (my option there the best) Better finish. They cost more. But can scratch easier


To add to the previous answer, thermo doors often tend to have a glossier finish than melamine.

The edges are more rounded where the melamine edges tend to be straighter and the join line is visible on melamine.

Melamine is often still used for shelves inside the units when thermo doors are used.

We decided to go with another colour than white in melamine instead because the White looked fairly budget and as the coating seemed to be thinner it would've shown damage more easily on white than the slightly darker colour we chose.

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