Cabinet hardware

cabinet hardware

Have you seen the endless supply of cabinet hardware? How do you even begin to choose? What is a cabinet pull? What is a catch? What is a cup? This information will help to clear up some of confusion so you can buy with confidence.

There are lots of different types of cabinet hardware. They come in a wide variety of shapes, sizes, and styles. However, they can be broken down into very basic categories such as cabinet knobs, cabinet pulls and handles, cup handles and bin pulls, cabinet latches and catches, and cabinet hinges.


Cabinet Knobs

Cabinet knobs are the most simple and basic type of cabinet hardware to install. Generally, a knob is attached to the cabinet door or drawer front by a single screw.

Knobs can be made in a wide variety of materials such as: brass, zinc also known as die cast, stainless steel, bronze, crystal, marble, natural stone, etc. Solid brass knobs are proven to be one of the most durable and high quality materials in the industry and will provide the most value over a long time period. In fact finishes that are applied to solid brass hardware are over 200% more durable than those applied to items made from zinc. Materials such as stainless steel and blended bronzes are also quite popular and are very effective at maintaining their finish and color over a long period of use.

Cabinet knobs also come in a wide variety of styles such as: traditional, transitional, contemporary, rustic, etc. Because cabinet knobs come in different sizes and shapes they can also be used in a variety of different applications. For example, small knobs are perfect for pull out bread boards and butcher blocks. Oblong knobs are a great choice for doors with narrow moldings, or for long and  thin doors. If you want to cover up weathering on a cabinet left by another knob a knob with a wide base or attached backplate will be a good option.


Cabinet Pulls and Handles

Cabinet pulls and handles are available in many different styles and sizes. However, in contrast to knobs which are attached with just one screw, a cabinet pull or handle is attached to the cabinet door or drawer front by two or more screws. Because they have multiple screw holes, one of the most important factors in choosing handles is the center-to-center measurement. This is the difference from the center of one screw hole to the center of the next.
For large cabinets, tall doors, and oversized drawers, there is often a question of what size pull or handle to use. A good rule of thumb is that, when using a single pull on a drawer, the length of the hardware should be between 1/4 and 3/8 of the width of the drawer front, with one-third being a good middle ground. However, there is no “wrong” size. The choice of cabinet hardware is nearly always an aesthetic decision, and you should choose what works best for you.


Cup Handles and Bin Pulls

Cup handles (also known as bin pulls) are a special type of cabinet pull that is made especially for use on drawers. The mounting method and the shape of the pull is what makes them special. Because of their unique design, cup handles and bin pulls can only be opened from the open side of the pull, rather than from the top and bottom like a regular handle. Usually bin pulls are installed with the open end facing downward. Therefore, after installation you pull open the drawer from beneath the pull.  Sometimes you will see a single cup handle mounted in the center of a drawer, even on a wide drawer. However, some manufacturers will mount two pulls toward the left and the right sides of the drawers to add a visual contrast. However, you must pull both handles to open the drawer. If you pull only one of the two handles, the drawer will open off balance and over time this can damage the drawer slides or even your cabinetry. This applies not only to cup pulls, but to standard drawer handles as well. However, the cup handle offers a unique look and feel compared to traditional pulls.


Cabinet Latches and Catches

These two cabinet hardware types are often confused. This is due in part for two reasons: first is that the names for the parts of a latch also include the word catch; and second both latches and catches serve similar functions, in that they hold cabinet doors closed. On the latch there is a mechanism with a turn, lever, or other manual activating device. This operates the tongue of the latch which is a small, triangular piece of metal that protrudes from one end of the casing. On the catch there is a small metal cup or shell with an open cavity. This is the receiver. The tongue of the latch when installed goes inside of this second, smaller piece.

Cabinet latches come in many styles, from traditional and classic to decoratively ornate. They also come in a variety of operative designs. Two of the most common designs are rotational latches (sometimes called “turn” latches), and lever latches.

Rotational latches have a knob on the top of the housing that is turned to operate the tongue. Some latches operate only while turning in one direction and some are omnidirectional, meaning that they operate when the knob is turned clockwise or counterclockwise.

Lever latches use an extension attached to the internal spring to push the tongue open. Lever latches come in two directions. Perpendicular and Parallel.

Cabinet catches are used throughout the kitchen and bath industry, many examples of this type of catch can be seen, using a variety of clip styles, ball designs, and magnets.

Cabinet Hinges

Without the use of cabinet hinges, a cabinet would simply be a box and a piece of wood. It is with hinges that the cabinet becomes so much more: a place for dishes, a storage area for food, or a place for your personal accessories. One of the factors that can determine the type of hinge you need is the type of door you have, such as inset cabinets, partial offset cabinets, or full overlay cabinets. The world of hinges can be a complicated one so luckily C&H Construction can help take the confusion out of it for you.


Feel free to contact us with any questions you may have about purchasing or installing cabinet hardware.


C&H Construction is a licensed general contractor and Custom Home builder located in Blairsville, Union County Georgia serving Towns County Georgia, Fannin County Georgia, Gilmer County Georgia and the North Georgia Mountains.