DIY Soft Close Cabinet Doors {With Video!}

October 29, 2021

How to easily make cabinets doors soft close in just a few minutes. 

Tired of your doors slamming shut when the kids are in the kitchen? :) There's an EASY fix for this that only takes a few minutes to install. 

Did you know you can switch your basic cabinet doors to soft close cabinets by adding these dampers to your bathroom or kitchen cabinet doors? This is a great way to upgrade basic stock cabinets. 

I share an installation video later in this post!

Every time we used to walk through IKEA I would open and shut the cabinet doors to see the magic of the soft close door. I never thought I would have them in our house, because replacing each and every hinge in our home wasn't going to happen.

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You CAN replace all of your compact cabinet door hinges with these soft close hinges instead. These are used on face frame cabinets like ours that have the extra trim around the front of the cabinet: 

soft close hinges for cabinets

As long as you know how to use a screwdriver or power drill, this is a really easy update. The new hinges come with a tiny soft close mechanism installed inside. 

**You'll want to use a different type of hinge if you have frameless cabinets, that have no front trim. These soft close euro hinges will work for that type of cabinet!

Typically these are a little spendy (although the price has dropped over the years). 

If you use these self closing hinges, you'll need to adjust these to make your door spacing/opening uniform across all of your cabinets. 

See those little adjustment screws on the left side of the hinge above? You can tighten or loosen those to change the following: 

  • The height of each door (you'll want this to match across all of your cabinets.)
  • The depth -- so how far you want your cabinet doors to hang away from the frames.
  • The side to side measurements. You can move your doors to the left or right so they close tighter together or further apart. 

It's not difficult to make these adjustments, just a little time consuming and tedious. 

If your cabinet doors aren't level, or are hitting each other, try adjusting those screws!

Thankfully there's an easier answer for soft close doors at the hardware store. I was GIDDY the day I first time I came across these years ago!

These are soft close dampers you can buy in a package or individually. 

This is what they look like:

soft close dampers for doors

They run around $3 each but you can get them in multiples and they cost even less. 

The great thing is, you only need one per door, unlike the door hinges. 

The installation is SUPER easy. They go inside the cabinet like so, with a bit of the edge hanging over:

how to install soft close damper on cabinet

There's a hole in the side of the cabinet door damper to slide the screw through for installation. 

I recommend predrilling your screw holes with a drill bit first. 

This makes installation a lot easier and makes sure the frame doesn’t split. Each soft close adapter only needs one screw.

That's it for the install! 

One more thing though, you'll want to try out your door to see how it closes. 

If it doesn't close soft enough for your liking, you can move the damper by adjusting the back screw:

adjustable soft close dampers

You can extend it for heavier doors or make it shorter for lighter doors that need less "damping." 

That's the technical term you know. ;) 

You may have to play with it a bit till your door closes like you want. 

This soft close option have been especially helpful for us because I use stock cabinets for so many of my bookcase builds:

dark gray DIY TV wall built ins
See our giant entertainment center build here!

They are inexpensive and don't come with any of the cool options that more expensive cabinets have. 

For my recent pantry project, I used an option from the Rockler store just because I was impatient and didn't want to wait the day for a delivery. 😂

Here’s a quick video on how to install, and you can see how the doors close after installation:


 Those pantry doors are tall and heavy, so I may add one more damper at the bottom of each one. But on standard doors, one is more than enough to create that slow motion. 

When you do this it feels so luxurious…all fancy-like. It does take some getting used to – for awhile you'll try to shut the doors. We had to remind ourselves to chilllll and let the damper do it’s job. :)

It's nice because the little pads on our doors are constantly falling off -- I’m always gluing them back on and now there is no need. 

The directions just show these for cabinet doors but I’m going to try them out on a drawer to see if it works. If not…there’s always those full extending drawer slides with soft close…someday. ;) 

**I tried these dampers on drawers and they do NOT work! 

I love sharing little finds like this that work well – have you tried these door dampers in your home? 

P.S. You can add soft close drawers as well by installing new slides...I'll be sharing that DIY soon! 


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Comments

  1. Wow, that is sooo cool. Who knew they even make those to install yourself. Great find, Sarah

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  2. OH MY GOODNESS!! Thanks for sharing this find!! Our upper cabinets are pretty tall and you almost have to give them a whack to get them to shut all the way. This is especially a problem for our DILs who are a bit short. I am going to look for these! Problem solved.

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  3. Woooo Hooo!!! This is so cool!

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  4. I installed these about a year ago on my cabinets and I like them, they have held up fine. The only thing I've noticed is that some of them tend to twist due to being held by a single screw - yours look to be a slightly modified shape, so perhaps this has been address. Enjoy!

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  5. Need these!!! Going to look for them the next trip to HD! Fab find!!

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  6. Please do let us know if these work for drawers as well! My husband and I just finished re-doing our master closet, and he built some amazing drawers for us in it. But they tend to make a fair amount of noise when they close and our daughter sleeps just on the other side of the wall - I cringe every time we use them when she is sleeping! This could rock our world ;)

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  7. We used them on our newly painted cabinets and love them...

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  8. I so glad I am not the only one who has NOT painted the inside of their cabinets!!! Thanks for this, like others, had not idea these even existed! Will be making a trip to HD soon!

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  9. Like others, I am thrilled to have this new found knowledge! Many thanx! Will definitely be incorporating them ASAP!

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  10. I've been wanting the drawer things since I saw them in a friends house that they built a couple of years ago. I thought it would be a big deal. Can't wait to hear if these work in the drawers.

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  11. I would love some of these for a toilet seat. Husband and daughters love to let the lid slam in the middle of the night. Drives me crazy.

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    Replies
    1. Soft close toilet seats are like twenty bucks. I couldn't live without them!

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    2. Oh! You can buy slow close ring/lid for your toilets. Our house has them. Dreamy!

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    3. Now if they could just flush themselves - talk about dreamy. LOL!

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  12. Oh, that is so cool! I am so getting those for our kitchen cabinets.

    Marie Claire

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  13. I luckily discovered these too during my Kitchen Renovation since I didn't want to pay so much for soft-closing hinges. Aren't they terrific?!

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  14. This is awesome! I want to do this in my kitchen and I didn't even know it was possible!!!! Thanks for posting this.

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  15. Home Depot here I come!!! I am getting those!!!!

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  16. I do have the toilet seats that go down slow so now slamming!

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    Replies
    1. Now, if they'd only put themselves down.....

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  17. This is great. My cabinet doors are forever being "slammed". I will definitely have to pick some of these up!!

    Thank you for sharing this find.

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  18. Excellent idea! Husband slams bathroom cabinet door; we definitely need this!!!
    Thx,
    Linda

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  19. Sarah, do these work on drawers? I cannot WAIT to get to the HD. Thanks for sharing!

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  20. Genius! Thanks!!! Can't wait for the verdict on the drawers.

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  21. That's amazing! Great value I think, it really adds a touch of luxury to a kitchen. Now I just need to find them this side of the the Atlantic!

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  22. Sarah: Thanks for posting this.
    I bought them and my husband installed them over the weekend.
    Love them and I am thankful that you told us about them.

    Denise

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  23. We installed IKEA cabinets in our kitchen and the soft close doors and drawers ROCK. Good to know there's a universal product out there.

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  24. I have looked at hinges for soft close doors but they are soooo expensive. Love this idea!!! Please let us know how the drawers do. I was thinking ahead when I was reading the article and wondered if these would work on drawers. THANK YOU!!! ♥

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