Replace the cabinets on your recreational vehicle, or RV, simply for a cosmetic facelift, or because of damage or wear and tear. Find replacement cabinets at RV dealerships or home improvement warehouses. Breakers' yards where damaged RVs are parted for spares sometimes have units that exactly match the preexisting ones. Specialty workshops can build bespoke units to order.

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The interior of newer RVs equipped with slide-outs can be as roomy and smart as the inside of a house.

Step 1

Remove the preexisting cabinets without damaging the surrounding area. Take the time to study how it was installed by the RV manufacturer, then reverse the installation process. Typically this involves first removing the door. Unscrew the hinges from the cabinet -- not the door -- to reduce the potential for catching yourself or your clothes on anything sharp as you continue to work. Remove any internal shelves. Usually this involves no more than lifting them off buttons pressed into the sidewalls of the cabinet's interior. Locate the fasteners holding the cabinet to the walls and/or adjacent furniture, and retract them. Depending on the location of the cabinet -- in the galley, for instance, where atmospheric contaminants can act as a glue by settling between flat surfaces -- you may have to gently rock the cabinet back and forth to free it.

Step 2

Clean the area from which the preexisting cabinet has been removed. Use a degreasant solution designed not to damage or weaken the substrate.

Step 3

Use a stud finder to locate the reinforcing braces that pass inside the walls in the immediate area. The new cabinet cannot be hung from the paneling used by RV manufacturers as interior walls. Mark the locations of the braces with a permanent marker pen, then use a tape measure to transfer those measurements to the back and/or sides of the new cabinet. Drill holes approximately 10 inches apart through the lines drawn on the cabinet, using a bit sized to the fasteners you will be using to hang it.

Step 4

Have an assistant hold the new cabinet in its desired location, then use the permanent marker pen to mark through the drilled holes in the back and/or sides onto the adjacent surfaces of the RV. Drop the cabinet away from the work area and drill pilot holes in each mark; use the appropriate drill bit for the type of brace you are drilling into, either wood or metal.

Step 5

Return the new cabinet to its desired location, again with the help of an assistant, and align the holes in its sides and/or back with the pilot holes, then install the fasteners: Use wood screws for wooden braces, and metal machine screws for metal braces. The screws should have rounded heads, not be countersunk, and be no longer than the ones removed from the preexisting cabinet. Have all the screws firmly in place before allowing your assistant to release the weight of the cabinet.

Step 6

Fit a suitable latch. Typically new cabinets are supplied complete with hardware. The latches on cabinets designed for stationary homes are not up to the task of keeping them shut while the kitchen is in motion, as on an RV. Reuse the latch from the preexisting cabinet if it is still functioning and is of a size, shape and design you are happy with. Otherwise, choose a product that features a mechanical latch. Do not install a magnet-and-metal-plate closure. Follow the manufacturer's detailed fitting instructions. Typically the moving part of the latch should be attached to the door, and the piece into which it fits should be attached to the jamb.