Benjamin Moore Cabinet Primer: Application, Reviews, and Concerns

Applying a primer is important when painting cabinets. The primer provides an ideal surface that the new paint can adhere to for a long time without peeling or chipping. A high-quality primer also protects the wood from mildew and moisture.

Benjamin Moore is a popular brand of cabinet paints and primers. This article reviews the Benjamin Moore cabinet primer and outlines the best method to apply a primer. We also discuss some customer reviews and concerns about the Benjamin Moore primer for you to make an informed decision.

How to Apply the Benjamin Moore Cabinet Primer

Applying a primer is necessary when painting old and stained cabinets. The primer gives you a smooth and clean finish after painting. New wood also requires a coat or two of primer for the paint to stick well.

The underlying wood may absorb moisture or attract mildew without a primer, which leads to premature rotting. Let us look at the proper application procedure for a tidy paint job.

1. Remove Cabinet Hardware

The first step when painting cabinets is to remove all hardware, doors, knobs, and drawers. You need a flat surface to paint. You also need to protect cabinet hardware from stains.

2. Clean and Sand the Surfaces

The next step is to clean the cabinet surfaces with a damp cloth and soap or grease remover. Allow the drawers and doors to dry. Benjamin Moore recommends that you use medium sandpaper on the cabinets after cleaning.

The primer and paint cannot adhere to the smooth finish on the cabinets. Sanding gives the primer some grit to stick to and evens out rough patches on old cabinets.

You can also sand down obvious stains before painting. Use a damp cloth to wipe away all the dust and allow the surfaces to dry.

3. Cover the Surrounding Areas and Objects

Cover the countertops, furniture, and other surfaces with drop cloths or plastic sheets to protect them from primer spills. You can move large doors to an empty, spacious room.

4. Apply the Primer

Apply the primer on the cabinets with a premium paintbrush or roller. Use at least two coats for the best finish after painting. Two coats are advisable to prevent tannin from bleeding through the new paint.

Allow the first coat to dry before applying the second coat. Sand the surfaces if necessary before recoating for a smooth finish.

A coat of high-quality primer seals the cabinet surfaces and ensures that new paint does not rub off when you wipe the cabinets. In addition, it prevents the wood from absorbing the moisture content in paint.

When wooden surfaces draw moisture from paint, the paint hardens and dries prematurely. Consequently, the paint performance is degraded. A primer is a barrier between the dry wood and the new coat of paint.

Benjamin Moore recommends a 24-hour break after applying the primer for the cabinets to dry. Sand the surfaces again with fine-grit sandpaper, wipe the dust, and then paint the cabinets.

Why Choose Benjamin Moore Cabinet Primer?

Benjamin Moore offers different premium primers to meet different needs and preferences. The common characteristics of its primers are excellent adhesion, fast drying, and outstanding stain suppression. The most popular brand is the all-purpose 100% acrylic primer.

The acrylic primer provides a smooth and uniform finish. It seals bleeding stains perfectly and dries fast. The all-purpose primer also offers an outstanding mildew-resistant coat for cabinets and other surfaces.

The company also offers alkyd primer, which is an excellent sealer. You can sand the primer easily and recoat in two hours. The third category of Benjamin Moore primers is the all-purpose alkyd primer.

The third primer is excellent for painting jobs in areas that require low volatile organic compounds (VOC). You can recoat the all-purpose alkyd primer within four hours. In addition, the primer offers outstanding tannin blocking and seals evenly.

Benjamin Moore primers help you complete your repainting projects fast because they dry fast. You are also assured that the new paint will adhere to the surface and maintain its flawless finish.

Premium mildew and stain suppression are important, especially for wood types prone to tannin bleeding. Let us talk about the feedback from other painters before you order any primer.

Customer Reviews

Customer feedback helps you make an informed decision after reading the manufacturer’s product descriptions and promises. The positive buyer reviews indicate that the Benjamin Moore primer is an excellent base for painting.

The cabinet primer is a reliable undercoat when painting kitchen and bathroom cabinets. Painters achieve satisfactory results when renovating old stained cabinets.

Painters find the primer easy to apply. The manufacturer has clear instructions for each primer category. In addition, the primer covers old stains well and dries quickly, which saves DIY painters time and energy.

The primer dries within 6 hours, allowing homeowners to coat their cabinets within a day. Customers also recommend the primer for its professional finish and long-lasting results.

Benjamin Moore cabinet primers are a popular choice for DIY painters repainting their cabinets for the first time. The painters achieve nearly the same results as professional painters.

Negative customer reviews of the primers mention the high price compared to other primers on the market. Some customers also mention that the primer takes longer to dry in poorly ventilated rooms.

Concerns about the Benjamin Moore Cabinet Primer

Painters categorize the cabinet primer on the thick side. The advantage of a thick primer is outstanding stain suppression and wood protection. However, it is difficult for a painter to achieve an even coat with a thick primer.

You may need to sand the surfaces between coats if you are not a professional painter. In addition, you may have a challenging time with the Benjamin Moore cabinet primer if you are accustomed to thin primers.

Another concern from painters is that sanding the primer is daunting after it dries. Sanding is necessary to even out the surfaces before applying a new coat of primer or paint.

You may only achieve your desired finish fast if you apply the primer in thin layers. In addition, you need to pick the right sandpaper that can work through the dry primer.

Test the sandpaper with a small area before applying it to the cabinets. When working with a thick primer, patience is necessary, but the long-lasting results are worth the effort.

Important Tips for a Smooth Finish with Benjamin Moore Cabinet Primer

Despite concerns about its thickness, the Benjamin Moore cabinet primer remains one of the best options in the market. With the following tips, you can achieve a flawless finish with the primer as a professional or DIY painter.

1. Prepare the surfaces properly.

Cabinet surfaces are easy to prepare for priming because of the glossy finish. Clean the surfaces thoroughly with soap and water. Any dirt, grease, mold, or dust residue will show through the paint if you ignore it during preparation.

2. Apply the primer in thin coats.

You may be tempted to use thick layers to cover stains on your cabinets. Thin layers are recommended for this primer because of its thick consistency.

3. Allow each coat to dry before recoating.

A flawless painting job requires time. Give each primer coat time to dry before recoating or painting. Sanding is easier when the coat is completely dry. Benjamin Moore recommends 4-6 hours before recoating or sanding.

4. Sand the surfaces lightly in between coats.

Sanding the surface after every coat gives a more even finish after painting. Use fine-grit sandpaper to even out the surfaces and apply light pressure.

5. Use a high-quality roller or brush.

A premium microfiber or foam paint roller is better than a paintbrush when priming large surfaces like cabinet doors. However, a high-quality paintbrush gives you more control, especially in maintaining thin primer layers.

6. Proper ventilation

Ventilation is important for your health when painting because of the toxic fumes. Keeps the doors and windows open to allow enough fresh air to flow. You can also use a fan if the room is poorly ventilated.

Proper ventilation is also important for the primer to dry fast. The process is longer in rooms with poor air circulation.

7. Read the manufacturer’s instructions

Benjamin Moore has different primer brands with different properties and recommended applications. For instance, the all-purpose alkyd primer is suitable for painting areas requiring low VOC.

Check the manufacturer’s website and instructions on the can before applying the primer. A professional painter or painting services can help you achieve the best results in repainting your cabinets.


Applying a primer is necessary before painting cabinets for the new coat of paint to stick and last long. The primer also provides a protective layer to the wood underneath. The Benjamin Moore cabinet primer offers excellent adhesion and stain suppression. The primer dries fast and helps you achieve a tidy finish after a painting project.

Cleaning and sanding the cabinet surfaces are necessary before applying the primer. Use a premium roller or brush and sand the cabinets between coats for a smooth finish. Give each coat enough time to dry before recoating, and ventilate the room. Despite the concerns about its thick consistency and price, the Benjamin Moore cabinet primer is an excellent choice for DIY and professional painters.