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Kitchens, Part 4

of more than about 220 degrees F.

Some people buy marble tops. That is domestic suicide. Others buy granite. Granite is fine for temperature resistance but it can absorb food stains and bacteria. Also, if you ding / dent / chip that granite top then to make a real repair you have to replace that top — all of it.

To get you to buy, the salesman must trash your existing kitchen. He can usually do this easily.

He will talk about bacteria and mold and grease embedded in your cabinets. He will talk about how the grease will never come out so if you try to paint those cabinets of yours the paint will just scrape off like a moist scab. He will drone on and on about how painting the cabinets will cause fumes to spread throughout the home. This is all true. He probably will not talk to you about the incredible mess that refinishing cabinets on site causes. It is incredible.

Another problem with existing cabinets is that the shelves may be sagging. Some “new construction” cabinets have shelves made of nothing but wood chips and glue. After even just one year of a dinner set for twelve stacked on them they can sag an inch or more in the middle.

These “new construction” cabinets may be so poorly constructed that to even re-face them will take all sorts of extra work … including re-inforcing the back side of the front face so it can support new hinges, and then there are new shelves and the new heavy doors.

The salesman will open a carrying case of cabinet doors and let you fondle them. They are heavy. Usually they are made of printed PVC (that is sprinkler pipe in a different shape) layered onto medium density fiberboard. He may have 10 or more different styles and colors and wood grains for a total possible set of combinations of maybe 1000.

The salesman might do various demonstrations to show his cabinet doors to be incredibly wonderful. He can tell you that the core material for the doors is the same material used by “fine furniture makers.” His example will be any of the low to mid-range tract home market funiture companies like Ethan Allen.

With a straight face and with wonder in his eyes he will tell you that the inner core of his door is made of even the finest woods on earth, Cherry, Oak, and More, all ground to the finest of powders and then pressed together under tremendous pressure — just like a diamond — with the finest of space-age resins to create

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