Buyers Guide 2020: How to Buy and Import Kitchen Cabinets from China?
While kitchen cabinets are valued for their practical use such as storage for kitchen tools, they are also appreciated for aesthetic reasons. Whether you’re considering a classic look or the latest trendy choice, well-planned and designed kitchen cabinets can make your kitchen and even your entire home as a whole.
You need good, functional kitchen cabinets that are versatile and can provide upkeep for all your kitchen stuff. Since there seems to be an ever-increasing need for storage, it can be a complicated task to choose a kitchen cabinet that serves your needs.
Here are the reasons why you should buy Chinese kitchen cabinets:
- Cheaper price: Due to the use of advanced production processes, Chinese kitchen cabinets are usually cheaper compared to cabinets made in other countries.
- Easy to assemble: Since a lot of Chinese kitchen cabinets are exported, they are made in a way that they are easy to assemble. Most Chinese manufacturers use a cam lock mechanism where the cabinet face frame and the sides are held together with a hook.
- Varied, beautiful designs: Chinese kitchen cabinets are some of the most beautifully-designed. Some feature magnificent Asian artistry that’s embossed onto them. Others, while appearing simple, are designed intelligently to provide the most satisfaction to their users.
- Made by advanced manufacturing processes. China’s furniture industry uses advanced manufacturing processes. Information technology is applied in the production process. With increasing technological innovation, furniture enterprises meet the goal of low cost, high quality and highly efficient production.
- Perfect for investment properties: Chinese Kitchen cabinets are good for properties which people make for investment purposes as they give the same look and feel of any other cabinet at a low price. This makes the investment properties easy to sell or being rent-out.
Where to buy kitchen cabinets in China?
The China National Furniture Association (CNFA) cites 45 furniture manufacturing clusters in China, which includes the six regions the Pearl River Delta (PRD), Yangtze River Delta (YRD), Bohai Rim, northeastern China, central China and western China.
The PRD has the highest production output and the strongest integrated support capability. With its edge in product quality and operations management, Fujian, Zhejiang, Jiangsu, Shandong and Shanghai, come next. The furniture industry in the YRD region is developing fast, with the highest average growth rate in the country. The northern and northeastern regions, with Beijing as the centre, have a sound furniture industry base and rich wood resources.
Furniture industrial parks are found primarily in eight central and western provinces, including Jiangsu, Anhui, Henan, Hebei, Hubei, Sichuan, Yunnan and Shanxi.
If you don’t have the time to go to each of the factories in China, you can head straight to the big furniture malls, like the ones in Shunde furniture markets located in Foshan City in Guangdong province to view finished kitchen cabinets. As I mentioned about those 8 provinces manufacturers, most of them have sale centres and warehouse in Shunde furniture markets. You can finish one-stop shopping for your house in Foshan city.
How to Choose Chinese Cabinet Manufacturers?
When choosing the right Chinese cabinet manufacturer or supplier, consider the following criteria:
- Production cost
- Quality control
- Manufacturing capabilities
- Measurement and design process
- Lead time
- Project support
How to Buy Imported Kitchen Cabinets From China?
Identify Specifications Based on a Kitchen Floor Plan
A kitchen floor plan determines the size, functionality, and budget of kitchen cabinets. Your floor plan gives you a visual of how your fully functional kitchen would look like after space is occupied.
Chinese RTA cabinets are available in various sizes to fit kitchens of any sizes. The same with Chinese kitchen cabinets that are semi-custom. In the case of Chinese kitchen cabinets that are custom-made, they will be adjusted to perfectly fit a buyer’s specifications.
Determine the Use of Kitchen Cabinets
Apart from your kitchen floor plan, include the functions you want for your kitchen cabinets.
Whether it’s custom, semi-custom, or stock, kitchen cabinets come in forms and sizes depending on functionality, as follows:
- Base cabinets
- Wall cabinets
- Tall cabinets
What is your kitchen cabinet for? Do you want to store food items and small kitchen utensils? Do you want to store larger kitchen utensils?
Determine Materials and Shipping
The types of imported kitchen cabinets from China highly depends on your budget and taste.
Custom and semi-custom kitchen cabinets from China can cost more than Chinese RTA cabinets. If you want to a solid wood kitchen cabinet from China, that might cost you a little more.
Which materials are best for making kitchen cabinets?
- Wood Naturally occurring, solid wood is the most common cabinet option. Beautiful and timeless, wood kitchen cabinets provide great value to any home. There are many varieties of wood, with differences in cost, appearance, and durability. The high-end ones are very durable, lasting for many years. Because of this, wood continues to be the top choice for high-quality cabinets.
- Hard maple
- Bamboo Birch
- Particleboard Wood crumbs or particles (sawdust, wood shavings, or other similar materials) or non-wood plant debris (wheat straw, straw, linen, sugarcane, or other similar materials) is thermo-pressed together with adhesives.
- Plywood Wood product that consists of a multi-layer board made by combining together very thin layers of wood.
- Medium-Density Fiberboard Typically denser than plywood, medium-density fiberboard or MDF is a wood product made from smaller fibres than particleboard. It has clean edges and with a very smooth surface and superior screw-holding power. It is an affordable and versatile alternative to solid wood.
- High-Density Fiberboard is similar to medium-density fiberboard but is denser and much stronger and harder because it is made out of exploded wood fibres that have been highly compressed. Consequently, the density of hardboard is 31 pounds per cubic foot (500 kg/m3) or more and is usually about 50–65 pounds per cubic foot (800–1,040 kg/m3). It differs from particle board in that the bonding of the wood fibres requires no additional adhesive, the original lignin in the wood fibres sufficing to bond the hardboard together, although resin is often added.
- Stainless steel gives off a modern or industrial look. Stainless steel cabinets can be expensive, so make sure you can cover it in your budget. polyurethane foam is filled with 1.2mm thick double 304 stainless steel to form a high hardness, high strength mesa with no cracking, corrosion resistance, scratch resistance, snow sand and scratch patterns on the surface. The cabinet body is made of 0.6 thick double 304 stainless steel, 18MM thick, fingerprint-free board, filled with macromolecule aviation material honeycomb aluminium, zero formaldehyde, environmentally friendly, healthy and durable.
Door Material: Which Is Best for You?
Kitchen cabinets can be made from a wide range of materials, including solid wood, thermofoil, PVC, wood veneer, lacquer, acrylic, toughened glass, melamine and laminate.
- Solid Wood
Solid wood furniture is strong enough to easily satisfy all furniture applications, and it can last for centuries. The advantages of solid wood furniture are undeniable. Combine a piece of wood furniture to furniture made from steel or glass and the natural beauty of the wood will add warmth and character to any room.
Thermofoil is a vinyl film applied to a substrate with heat and pressure. The application process makes it possible for Thermofoil to resemble wood detailing more closely than laminate can. Most often white or almond, Thermofoil cabinets are easy to care for and less likely to chip than painted cabinets.
PVC cabinets have many advantages over other material used in the kitchen such as it is termite and waterproof. It has very low maintenance and easy to install. It is fire retardant and highly durable as much as 100 years. And the most important it is very economical.
- Wood Veneer
The veneer is a thin layer of material — usually fine-grained wood — overlaid on a cheaper material. Wooden veneers have a surface backing to add durability to decorative pieces. A veneer is an economical choice when deciding upon aesthetics in construction.
Lacquered high gloss doors are the best from a looks perspective and quite durable too. The collection has more than 256 Million colours. With matte, high gloss or flash surface. Flawless thanks to the use of premium materials, outstanding pre-treatment and special multi-layer lacquer finishing.
A high gloss, waterproof surface with uniform colour consistency and UV stability, acrylic is just the material homeowners are looking for when choosing their kitchen interiors. It creates the kind of visual appeal that’ s ideal for custom furniture.
- Toughened Glass
Toughened glass is one of two kinds of safety glass regularly used in applications in which standard glass could pose a potential danger. Toughened glass is four to five times stronger than standard glass and does not break into sharp shards when it fails. Toughened glass is manufactured through a process of extreme heating and rapid cooling, making it harder than normal glass.
Melamine is used to make everything from kitchen cabinets to residential and commercial furniture and shelving. Although melamine may not be the first choice of every builder, it does offer some distinct advantages.
Surface applied to an MDF door, with many colours available. The edges are covered with a PVC edge banding. It is easy to obtain large sample pieces to help with the colour decision.
Each option has its merits. At first glance, wood offers natural beauty and a more traditional, country or rustic look, while manmade materials have an endless range of colours and a more modern style. With a little imagination, though, almost any material can work in any kitchen style. In fact, kitchen designers today often use more than one material in cabinet designs, or use the same material but in two different finishes or colours.
So choose your material not just by style, but by cost, durability, available door styles and finishes, and just plain old personal preference.
Which hardware to use for my Kitchen?
- ITW Proline
- Zoo Hardware
- kingslide & LIAN YA
- Assa Abloy
- The J.G. Edelen
Purchase Process for Buying Kitchen Cabinets from China
- Kitchen floor plan
A good floor plan can deliver a beautiful, fully functional kitchen. Floor plans transform your ideas into vivid visuals, where you can find out what needs to be done. When creating or choosing kitchen designs, you see not just the appearance but also the functionality.
Have a well-designed kitchen floor plan and a budget for what you would like to spend on your kitchen cabinets
- Cabinets usage
Understand what you need in your kitchen cabinets. Research about cabinet construction and material specifications. Consider factors like size, style and kitchen appliances.
You can choose from three cabinet variations: stock, semi-custom, and custom. Stock cabinets sold at home centres may come pre-assembled or sell versions that need to be assembled. They come in limited style and colours options. Most of them are clearance sale with very big discount price. Semi-custom cabinets provide more style choices and configurations for a more accurate fit for your kitchen. Custom cabinets are the most expensive option but can include many added features.
Cabinets now come with many user-friendly options, making your life easier. Take a look at the pull out drawers, built-in open-storage systems, wine-racks, china display, built-in spice rack, or lazy Susans. More features mean more expenses, so determine what features are important to you.
- Confirm materials and quotations
Keep in mind that you must communicate to the supplier the standards that your product must follow. You must first assess which regulations apply to home products in your market, and then communicate this requirement to your manufacturer.
- Confirm 3D design
Confirm your detailed kitchen cabinet specs, sizes, drawings and terms. When a final design has been finalized, the manufacturer will produce production-ready drawings for your review and approval. Write down all specific materials in the contract.
- Produce and Pay
Once you approve the design and pay full deposit, your order is placed directly to the factory in China.
The usual manufacturing time from production to your doorstep in 70-90 days （production time normally is 45-70days）, depending on the size，material of your order, and factory production schedules and holidays.
This will avoid the possibility of substitution, disputes, and sending the wrong items.