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How To Drill Holes For Cabinet Hardware

When it comes to cabinet hardware installation, the process may seem simple at first glance, but there are many factors to consider for a flawless result. In this comprehensive guide, we will delve into every aspect of drilling holes for cabinet pulls with precision and finesse ✨

We'll begin by discussing how to choose the perfect hardware based on your cabinets. Next, you'll learn about accurate measuring techniques that ensure proper placement of your new kitchen cabinet pulls.

As we progress to discuss cabinet hardware installation, you'll discover expert drilling tips that guarantee precise holes without causing damage. We will also cover how to attach cabinets drawers and pulls securely using appropriate screws, while avoiding overtightening 👌

Finally, we will explore finishing touches after you install your new cabinet knobs or pulls so that everything looks polished and professional. With these insights in hand, you can confidently tackle any future projects involving the installation of kitchen cabinet hardware or other types of cabinetry in your home.


Table Of Contents:


Coastal kitchen with BECKER D-bar pulls

Choose the Right Hardware for Your Cabinets and Drawers

Take a close look at the doors and drawers of your cabinets, then measure the width of their flat surfaces. The hardware you select, whether it's knobs, or cabinet pulls, should be based on the smallest door or drawer width 📏

Now comes the exciting part choosing your hardware. From bedroom dressers and living room sideboards to kitchen cupboards and bathroom vanities, we offer high-quality hardware solutions for all types of cabinets and storage units. Keep your kitchen looking modern with contemporary hardware like our BECKER Grooved D-Bar and LENNON Grooved Button Knob 💅

Want to enhance your daily routines? Then explore sophisticated closet pull handles such as our WATT T-Bar Pull, available in a variety of sizes. With its simple yet elegant solid brass design, it's perfect for minimalist or shaker-style closets. 


Jig for drilling holes for cabinet pulls

Create a Template or Jig

If you're a DIY'er or home renovator, you know that drilling holes for cabinet pulls can be a daunting task. However, with the right tools and technique, it's an easy DIY project. One way to ensure that your cabinet hardware is installed evenly and accurately is by creating a template or jig ✂

What is a template or jig?

A template or jig is essentially a tool that helps you measure where to drill holes on cabinets or drawers. It ensures consistency in placement and spacing of the hardware so that they are leveled and aligned properly.

The benefits of using a template

  • Accuracy: A well-made jig or template will help you achieve precise measurements for each hole location 📐
  • Saves time: Using templates means you don't have to take multiple measurements for each pull installation which saves time.
  • Ease of use: Templates make drilling consistent-sized holes easier than measuring every hole individually.

Making your own template

You can easily create your own customized templates at home using materials such as cardboard, paperboard, or MDF board. Here's how:

  1. Gather all necessary supplies like ruler or tape measure, pencil / marker, scissors, etc., along with any material suitable for making templates (cardboard or MDF board).
  2. Measure the distance between each hole and mark it on your template material and make with a pencil 🖊
  3. Cut out the holes in your template with scissors, making sure they are aligned properly.

You can then line up your template on each cabinet, and drill straight through to get perfectly aligned holes every time. 

Short on time? Just purchase pre-made templates or jigs online or at hardware stores 💡


KEPLER Cabinet Pull Handles in green kitchen

Tips to Accurately Drill Holes for Cabinet Hardware

Don't let drilling new holes for cabinet pulls stress you out use these techniques to ensure precision and avoid common mistakes 💁‍♀️

Use an awl

An awl is a simple but effective tool to create a small indentation on the surface of your cabinetry before drilling, preventing your drill bit from wandering off course.

Choose the right drill bit size

Choosing the right size of drill bit is crucial for creating clean and precise holes measure the diameter of your handle's screws or bolts and choose a slightly smaller drill bit for a snug fit 🤏

Prevent splintering with masking tape

  • Apply masking tape over your marked spots before drilling to prevent splintering around the edges of drilled holes.
  • Use painter's tape instead to avoid leaving residue behind on some finishes.

With these techniques, you'll be able to drill perfect holes every time 👷‍♀️

Use the the right screws

Securely attaching handles is vital for maintaining their longevity and function, so be sure to choose the right screws for your cabinet or drawer material.

Choose screws that are long enough to pass through the handle and at least 1/4 inch into the door or drawer front 📏

Luckily, you can select a specific screw size when shopping your chosen hardware. If you need a different size to what you received, just get in touch with our customer care team, and they'll send over the correct screws ✔


Minimalist kitchen with BEZEL Knobs

Drill Your Cabinet Fronts

Now that you have measured the holes, it's time to drill your cabinet fronts. Put on some safety goggles and keep the door open to prevent drilling into the frame of the cabinet behind it 🥽

  1. Start by using a smaller drill bit to create a "starter hole." This will prevent larger drill bits from jumping over marked positions and causing splintering in the wood or uneven holes. 
  2. Align your drill with the pencil mark made using your template and slowly start drilling into the wood while keeping your hand steady and level. 
  3. Once you've created a starter hole, use a larger drill bit that matches the size of your screw (usually 1 inch for standard cabinet hardware screws) to precisely drill through. 

A helpful tip is to use an awl instead of marking with a pencil as this creates an indentation for easier grip when drilling 👍


PLANE Knob and Pull

Drill Your Cabinet Drawers

To be frank, drilling cabinet drawers can be a bit more challenging than drilling doors - but it's definitely doable. Just take your time and follow these step-by-step instructions: 

  1. Measure the height of the drawer front and divide it in half. 
  2. Make a light pencil mark at the center point to avoid leaving an indentation on the wood. 
  3. Determine the width of the drawer front by measuring it. 
  4. Divide this number in half to locate the horizontal center of the cabinet front where you will drill if you're installing a single knob ☝
  5. If you're putting two holes for a pull handle on drawers, measure equal distances left and right so that both screw holes align with each handle leg, which should sit centrally on each drawer front.
  6. For wider drawers requiring two pulls, measure equal distances from both sides to ensure proper alignment of each pull handle hole 📏
Blue kitchen cabinets with FOLD Pulls

Finishing Touches After Installation

After attaching your new cabinet pulls, it's time to ensure everything looks polished and perfect.

Clean up dust and debris

Vacuum away any leftover bits from the drilling with a brush-equipped cleaner, then make your cabinets gleam by wiping down surfaces using a damp cloth.

Adjust hardware position if necessary

If you need to adjust the cabinet pulls for a better alignment, loosen the screws slightly and reposition them with care using a soft cloth as protection.

  • TIP: To avoid damaging your cabinetry while making these adjustments, place a soft cloth between the screwdriver and cabinet surface when tightening or loosening screws.
  • BONUS: For an extra touch of elegance, consider adding matching pulls or knobs to your kitchen cabinets or wardrobes.

Cover unused holes with tape 

With so many holes in the template to choose from, it's easy to forget which one you're using and end up drilling a hole in the wrong place. The easiest way to avoid this is by sticking masking tape over your template and only poking through the holes you plan on using 🕳


KEPLER with Backplates on Kitchen cabinets

Hide Old Holes with Backplates

The hard work is done, and now we're onto the finishing touches. Since you've drilled new holes, you'll want to cover up any old holes or damage left behind from your previous hardware 🚑

Forget about sanding down the wood and using wood filler; try using one of our backplates instead. These sturdy and secure backplates will sit behind your chosen pull handles and add an industrial finish to your cupboards and utility units. 

Choose from our smart and subtle DERRY Backplate in Brass or Antique Brass, both perfect complements for your vintage home aesthetic 💅

Whatever your creative vision may be, rest assured that our backplates are made to last with a clear protective lacquer finish. 

Check out our post on accurately measuring and fitting kitchen hardware for more tips.


Kitchen cabinet with JUDD Edge Pulls

You can now update your cabinets and drawers by efficiently installing cabinet hardware  an easy and cost-effective way to give them a fresh new look 🌟

Choosing the right hardware is key, so measure accurately for perfect placement and drill precisely for a professional finish.

A template or jig is an excellent tool that helps ensure accuracy when installing cabinet pulls, saves time, and makes drilling consistent-sized holes easier than measuring every hole individually. You can easily create your own customized templates at home using materials such as cardboard, paperboard, or MDF board 🙌

Whether you're a DIY'er or an interior designer, these steps will ensure your cabinet handle installation goes smoothly. With attention to detail and basic tools at hand, anyone can upgrade their cabinetry in no time 💪