maple vs cherry cabinets

Cherry Cabinets

Cherry is a premium hardwood that is very popular for kitchen cabinets. It has a distinctive, warm reddish color and a more noticeable grain than maple. It is fashionable, but also sturdy and durable.

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How Much Do Cherry Cabinets Cost?

You could spend as little as $5,000 to outfit a small kitchen with prefabricated cherry cabinets from a big box store or more than $30,000 for custom cherry cabinets for a large kitchen. The price depends on the quality of the cabinets, the size of the kitchen and your geographic location.

Generally, cherry is more expensive than maple because it is considered a premium wood. Budget about 15 to 20 percent more on average.

Cherry Cabinets Pros

  • Color – Many people choose cherry for the warm, reddish-brown natural color. The color is difficult to mimic with stain.
  • Better choice for dark cabinets – Cherry takes to dark stain better than maple, so it is the better choice if you want dark cabinets.
  • Grain pattern – Those who prefer a distinct, noticeable wood grain tend to love cherry cabinets.
  • Resale value – Cherry is very popular with homebuyers right now. Cherry cabinets are considered a good selling feature.

Cherry Cabinets Cons

  • Softer wood – Cherry is a softer than most maple, so it tends to scratch and dent more easily. That being said, it is still very durable.
  • Darkens over time – Cherry will naturally darken over time, and in some cases it will darken unevenly. One cabinet might be a different shade than another when the cabinets are older. Or, a single door might develop several different shades over time.

Maple Cabinets

Maple is another popular variety of wood for kitchen cabinets. It is lighter in color than cherry and has a more subtle grain pattern. Maple is a strong and durable wood, but it is also reasonably priced.

There are two types of maple used for cabinets: soft maple and hard maple. The term soft maple refers to several species of maple with similar hardness to cherry; hard maple refers to a single species that is stronger. However, hard maple is much more difficult to stain than soft maple.

How Much Do Maple Cabinets Cost?

The same pricing rules apply to maple cabinetry – the price varies greatly depending on the size of your kitchen, the quality of cabinets you select and geographic location. However, maple tends to be about 15 to 20 percent less expensive than cherry.

Maple Cabinets Pros

  • Durability – Generally, maple is a harder wood that is more difficult to scratch or dent.
  • Cost – You can expect to save about $1,000 to $2,000 by installing maple instead of cherry in an average-sized kitchen.
  • Less grain – For those who don’t like a distinct grain pattern, maple is ideal. The graining is very subtle.

Maple Cabinets Cons

  • Stain limitations – Maple doesn’t accept stain as well as some other types of wood. Dark stains tend to look blotchy or uneven. With maple, you’re better off choosing a lighter stain.
  • Yellows over time – Maple can take on a yellowish tint over time that some people find unattractive.

Author: Ashley Smith

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