28 Types of Cabinet Hinges and What They Do (Pros and Cons)

There are many different types of cabinet hinges, and each one has a unique function. In this blog post, we will discuss the 28 most common types of cabinet hinges and what they do. If you are thinking about installing new cabinets in your home, it is important to understand the different hinge options available to you. Let’s get started!

In this article:

What is a cabinet door hinge?

A cabinet door hinge is a hardware device that is used to attach a cabinet door to the frame of the cabinet. The most common type of hinge used for attaching cabinet doors is the butt hinge.

The butt hinge consists of two leaves, or flaps, that are connected by a pin. One leaf is attached to the door while the other leaf is attached to the frame. The leaves are connected by a pin that allows the door to swing open and closed.

Framed vs Frameless.

There are two types of cabinets, framed and frameless. Framed cabinets have a frame around the door, while frameless cabinets don’t. Each has its own set of pros and cons.

Framed Cabinets:

Pros:

  • stiffness: because there’s a frame around the door, it adds stiffness and prevents the door from sagging over time.
  • easier to install: since the frame is already there, it’s usually easier to install a framed cabinet than it is to install a frameless one.

Cons:

  • bulkier: because of the frame, these cabinets are generally bulkier and take up more space.
  • more expensive: the frame adds to the cost of the cabinet.

Frameless Cabinets:

Pros:

  • sleeker look: without a frame, these cabinets have a sleek, modern look.
  • more space: since there’s no frame, frameless cabinets generally have more space inside, making them great for storage.

Cons:

  • less sturdy: without a frame, these cabinets can sag over time, especially if they’re not properly supported.
  • harder to install: since there’s no frame, it can be tricky to install a frameless cabinet. You have to make sure the cabinet is level and supported before you start attaching it to the wall.

Cabinet overlays

What is a cabinet overlay?

A cabinet overlay is the front frame of a cabinet that sits on top of the door. The overlay hides the hinges and gives the cabinets a clean, finished look. There are three types of overlays: full, partial, and inset.

Full Overlay: A full overlay covers the entire face frame of the cabinet, leaving only a small gap around the door.

Partial Overlay: A partial overlay does not cover the entire face frame, leaving a larger gap around the door.

Inset: An inset overlay sits inside the cabinet opening, flush with the door.

Types of Cabinet Hinges

There are many types of cabinet hinges available on the market today.

1. Barrel hinges

What is barrel hinge?

A barrel hinge is a type of door hinge that consists of two semi-cylindrical barrels, one of which is attached to the door while the other is attached to the doorframe.

The barrels are connected by a pin or rod, and when the door is closed, the pin fits into a hole in the second barrel, holding the door closed.

Barrel hinges are often used on doors that are heavier than average, such as entry doors or cabinet doors, because they can support a lot of weight. They’re also popular for use on shutters and other types of doors that need to be able to swing open fully.

Pros and cons of barrel hinges:

Barrel hinges are one of the most popular types of hinges used in cabinetry. They are easy to install and provide a high level of support for doors and drawers.

However, barrel hinges can be visible from the outside of the cabinet, which may not be desirable in some cases. Additionally, because they protrude slightly from the surface of the door or drawer, they can be prone to collecting dust and dirt.

2. Butt hinges

What is a butt hinge?

A butt hinge is a type of door hinge that consists of two plates with connecting screws. One plate is attached to the door frame and the other is attached to the door.

Butt hinges are often used for interior doors because they are easy to install and provide a clean look. However, they can also be used for exterior doors. If you are using butt hinges for an exterior door, it is important to choose a heavy-duty option.

When choosing a butt hinge, you will need to decide on the size, finish, and material. The size is determined by the width of the door and the thickness of the door. The finish is either powder coated or plated.

Pros and cons of butt hinges:

Butt hinges are the most common type of hinge used in household applications. They are inexpensive and easy to install, making them a popular choice for many homeowners.

However, butt hinges are not as durable as other types of hinges, and they may not provide the same level of support that more heavy-duty options do.

3. Butterfly hinges

What is a butterfly hinge?

A butterfly hinge is a type of door hinge that allows the door to be opened wide while still being able to support the weight of the door. These hinges are often used on doors that need to be able to open up fully, such as closet doors.

Butterfly hinges get their name from their shape – they look like a butterfly when they are open. These hinges are made up of two leaves that are connected in the middle by a pin. One leaf is attached to the door while the other is attached to the door frame.

When the door is closed, the leaves of the butterfly hinge come together and look like a regular door hinge. However, when the door is opened, the leaves spread out like a butterfly’s wings. This allows the door to open up fully, giving you full access to whatever is behind the door.

Pros and cons of butterfly hinges:

They’re easy to install and come in a variety of styles and finishes. However, they’re not the most durable type of hinge and can be difficult to adjust if they become loose over time.

4. Continuous hinges

What is a continuous hinge?

A continuous hinge is a piano hinge that runs the full length of a door. Continuous hinges are used on doors that are too heavy for standard butt hinges or when extra support is needed. They can be used on both interior and exterior doors.

Continuous hinges are available in a variety of materials, including steel, stainless steel, and aluminum.

Pros and cons of continuous hinges:

Continuous hinges are great for high-traffic areas because they can take a beating and keep on going. They’re also very tamper-resistant, which makes them ideal for security applications.

On the downside, continuous hinges can be difficult to install, and they’re not always the most aesthetically pleasing option.

5. Corner hinges

What is a corner hinge?

A corner hinge is a type of door hinge that is used to connect two pieces of wood at a 90-degree angle. This makes them ideal for use on doors and cabinets.

There are two types of corner hinges: surface-mounted and flush-mounted. Surface-mounted corner hinges are easier to install, but they are not as strong as flush-mounted hinges.

Flush-mounted corner hinges are more difficult to install, but they are stronger and less likely to come loose over time.

Pros and cons of corner hinges:

Corner hinges are great for connecting two pieces of wood at a 90-degree angle, making them ideal for cabinet doors. However, they can be difficult to install and may not provide as much support as other types of hinges.

6. European Hinges

What is a European hinge?

A European hinge is a concealed hinge used for cabinets. It is also referred to as an invisible hinge, and features cup-shaped mortises that are cut into the back of the door and frame.

The hinges allow for a door to be opened a full 180 degrees, and can be adjusted with a Phillips head screwdriver.

Pros and cons of European hinges:

European hinges are a type of concealed hinge that is very popular in modern cabinetry. They are easy to install and provide a clean, sleek look to your cabinets.

One downside of European hinges is that they can be difficult to adjust if you need to make minor changes to the door alignment.

Another potential downside is that because they are concealed, they can be difficult to replace if they become damaged.

7. Face frame hinges

What is a face frame hinge?

A face frame hinge is a type of door hinge that is used to attach a door to a face frame. Face frames are usually found on cabinets, but can also be found on other types of furniture.

Face frame hinges are available in different sizes and styles, so you can choose the one that best suits your needs.

Most face frame hinges are made of steel or brass, but there are also some that are made of plastic. The most common type of face frame hinge is the full mortise hinge, which is designed to be installed in a hole that is cut into the face frame.

Pros and cons of face frame hinges:

On the plus side, they’re very easy to install.

On the downside, they don’t allow for much adjustability once they’re in place.

8. Faux hinges

What is a faux hinge?

A faux hinge is a hardware item that is made to look like a functional hinge, but does not actually move. Faux hinges are often used for decorative purposes, such as on cabinets where the doors do not need to open and close.

Pros and cons of faux hinges:

Faux hinges can be a great way to add decorative detail to your cabinets without the expense of purchasing and installing real hinges. However, there are some things you should keep in mind if you’re considering faux hinges for your kitchen cabinets. Here are the pros and cons of using faux hinges:

Pros:

  • they’re much cheaper than real hinges
  • they’re easy to install
  • they come in a variety of styles and finishes

Cons:

  • they’re not as durable as real hinges
  • the finish can chip or fade over time
  • they may not line up perfectly with your cabinet doors

9. Flush hinges

What is a flush hinge?

A flush hinge is a type of door hinge that is used when the door needs to be flush with the frame. This type of hinge is not visible from the outside and is often used on doors that are hidden or not often used. Flush hinges can be either surface mounted or recessed into the door.

Pros and cons of flush hinges:

Here, we’ll take a closer look at flush hinges – what they are, how they work, and some of the advantages and disadvantages associated with them.

Flush hinges are one of the most popular types of cabinet hinges on the market. They’re also one of the most versatile, as they can be used on a variety of different cabinet styles.

One of the main advantages of flush hinges is that they’re very easy to install. In fact, they’re often referred to as “self-closing” or “soft-closing” hinges because they require very little installation effort.

Another advantage of flush hinges is that they’re very affordable. They’re also widely available, which means you shouldn’t have any trouble finding a set that meets your needs.

However, there are a few disadvantages associated with flush hinges. One of the biggest is that they don’t offer a lot of adjustability. This means that if your doors are not perfectly aligned, you may have difficulty getting them to close properly.

Another downside of flush hinges is that they’re not as durable as some other types of hinges. This means that they may not be the best choice for heavy-use applications.

10. Friction hinges

What is friction hinge?

Friction hinges are special types of door hinges. They are commonly used on doors that are very heavy or where a high degree of security is required, such as jewelry cases. A friction hinge has two leaves, one fixed to the door and the other to the frame.

The leaves have a series of interlocking teeth that mesh together when the door is closed. The number of teeth and their shape determine the amount of friction, or resistance to opening, created by the hinge.

Pros and cons of friction hinges:

Friction hinges are the most common type of hinge. They are inexpensive and easy to install. Friction hinges work by using friction to keep the door in place. The downside to friction hinges is that they can be difficult to adjust and can wear out over time.

11. Full Crank Hinges

What is a full crank hinge?

A full crank hinge is a type of door hinge that allows the door to be opened a full 180 degrees. This type of hinge is often used on doors that need to be able to swing out of the way, such as on cabinets.

Pros and cons of full crank hinges:

There are several advantages to using full crank hinges. First, they allow the door to be opened fully, which can be helpful when you need to access the back of the cabinet. Additionally, they provide extra support for heavier doors, and they’re less likely to sag over time than other types of hinges.

However, there are a few potential drawbacks to full crank hinges as well. They can be difficult to install, and they may not work well with lighter doors. Additionally, they may not be the best choice if you’re looking for a sleek, modern look for your cabinets.

12. Full overlay hinges

What is full overlay hinge?

A full overlay hinge is a type of door hinge that allows the door to completely cover the opening in the cabinet frame. This gives the cabinet a clean, finished look. Full overlay hinges are available in different styles and sizes to suit your needs.

Pros and cons of full overlay hinges:

Full overlay hinges are the most popular type of hinge for cabinets. They allow the door to cover most of the opening, giving the cabinet a clean look. Full overlay hinges are also easy to install and adjust.

13. Half Crank Hinges

What is a half crank hinge?

A half-crank hinge is a type of door hinge that is used on doors that open to the outside. This type of hinge allows the door to be opened wider than a standard door hinge. Half-crank hinges are often used on doors that are located in high traffic areas or that receive a lot of use.

Pros and cons of half crank hinges:

Half crank hinges are a popular choice for many homeowners because they offer a high degree of adjustability. You can use them to fine-tune the alignment of your doors, ensuring that they close properly and evenly. However, half cranks can be difficult to install, and they’re not always the most aesthetically pleasing option.

14. Half overlay hinges

What is a half overlay hinge?

As the name implies, a half overlay hinge is a type of cabinet hinge that provides half the coverage of the typical full overlay hinge. This means that when the door is closed, only half of the door will be covered by the frame. The other half will be exposed.

Half overlay hinges are often used in situations where there is not enough space for a full overlay hinge. They are also used when the door needs to be able to swing open wider than a full overlay door would allow.

Pros and cons of half overlay hinges:

If you’re looking for a traditional look for your cabinets, half overlay hinges may be the right choice for you. These hinges are designed to sit on the outside of the cabinet door, so they’re easy to install and provide a clean look. However, because they’re not as hidden as other types of hinges, they can be more difficult to clean.

15. Inset hinges

What is an inset hinge?

An inset hinge is a type of door hinge that is designed to be concealed when the door is closed. This means that only the knuckle of the hinge is visible, making for a sleek and elegant look.

Pros and cons of inset hinges:

Inset hinges have a few advantages over other types of hinges. They’re less likely to show through the door, so they give a cleaner look. They’re also adjustable, so you can fine-tune the fit of your doors.

The main downside of inset hinges is that they’re more difficult to install than other types of hinges. If you’re not comfortable with installing them yourself, you’ll need to hire a professional.

16. Invisible hinges

What is an invisible hinge?

Invisible hinges are a type of door hinge that is not visible when the door is closed. They are often used on doors that have no frame, such as cabinet doors, and can be either surface-mounted or flush-mounted.

Pros and cons of invisible hinges:

While invisible hinges offer a sleek and seamless look to your cabinets, they do have their downsides.

One major downside is that they are not adjustable once installed, so if your doors start to sag or don’t close properly, you’ll need to replace the entire hinge. Additionally, invisible hinges are more expensive than traditional cabinet hinges.

17. Offset hinges

What is an offset hinge?

An offset hinge is a type of door hinge that is used when the door needs to be hung slightly away from the frame. This can be useful in situations where there is not enough clearance for the door to swing open fully, or where you want to create a bit of extra space in the room.

Pros and cons of offset hinges:

Offset hinges are a type of hinge that is commonly used in cabinets. These hinges allow the door to be mounted flush with the frame, but offset from the centerline. This can be useful for doors that are thicker than the frame, or for doors that need to be mounted closer to the edge of the frame.

Offset hinges are also often used in combination with other types of hinges, such as surface-mounted or concealed hinges.

There are a few things to consider before deciding if offset hinges are the right choice for your project. The first is that offset hinges can be more difficult to install than other types of hinges.

It is important to make sure that the door is mounted in the correct position before attaching the hinges, or the door may not close properly. Offset hinges also require more clearance than other types of hinges, so they may not be suitable for use in tight spaces.

Another thing to keep in mind is that offset hinges are not adjustable. This means that if the door needs to be adjusted, it will need to be removed and the hinges will need to be moved. This can be a bit of a hassle, so it is something to keep in mind when choosing offset hinges.

18. Partial overlay hinges

What is a partial overlay hinge?

A partial overlay hinge is a door hinge that is mounted on the outside of the door frame. The door sits over the opening, but does not completely cover it. This type of hinge is often used for doors that are thicker than average, such as those made of solid wood.

Pros and cons of partial overlay hinges:

Partial overlay hinges are a type of hinge that is commonly used in cabinets. These hinges allow the door to be mounted on the cabinet frame without being flush with the door opening.

This can give your cabinets a more finished look and provide additional support for the doors. However, partial overlay hinges can also make it difficult to align the doors properly, and they may not be compatible with all types of doors.

19. Piano hinges

What is a piano hinge?

A piano hinge is a long, narrow hinge that is often used on heavy doors and lids of pianos and grand pianos.

Piano hinges are also known as continuous hinges or full-surface hinges.

They offer a clean, seamless look since they run the entire length of the door or lid.

Piano hinges are strong and can support a lot of weight, making them ideal for heavy doors.

Piano hinges are available in different materials, such as brass, steel, and stainless steel.

Pros and cons of piano hinges:

Pros:

-Can be used on a variety of doors, such as cabinet doors, closet doors, and even toy chests

-Piano hinges are very strong and can support a lot of weight

-They are easy to install and don’t require any special tools or equipment

Cons:

-Because they are so strong, piano hinges can be difficult to adjust once they are installed

-Piano hinges can also be quite expensive compared to other types of hinges

20. Pie cut hinges

What is pie cut hinge?

A pie cut hinge is a type of hinge used on doors that open at an angle, such as corner cabinets. These hinges are also known as Lazy Susan hinges. Pie cut hinges allow the door to be opened wider than a standard hinge, making it easier to access the contents of the cabinet.

Pros and cons of pie cut hinges:

Pie cut hinges are a type of hinge that is commonly used in cabinets. They are named for their shape, which resembles a pie slice. Pie cut hinges are often used in corner cabinets, as they allow the door to be opened without interference from the other doors in the cabinet.

There are several advantages to using pie cut hinges. One advantage is that they allow the door to be opened wider than other types of hinges. This can be helpful if you need to access something in the back of the cabinet. Another advantage is that pie cut hinges are less likely to interfere with other doors in the cabinet.

There are also some disadvantages to using pie cut hinges. One disadvantage is that they can be difficult to install. Another disadvantage is that they are not as strong as other types of hinges and may not hold the door in place as well.

21. Pivot hinges

What is a pivot hinge?

A pivot hinge is a type of door hinge that allows the door to swing in both directions. The door is attached to the hinges at the top and bottom, and the hinges are mounted on a plate that is fixed to the frame.

Pivot hinges are commonly used on doors that are heavier than average, such as entry doors or storm doors. They are also used on doors that are wider than average, such as pantry doors.

Pros and cons of pivot hinges:

Pivot hinges are one of the most popular types of cabinet hinges. They’re easy to install and provide a clean, finished look to your cabinets. However, they have a few disadvantages as well.

One disadvantage of pivot hinges is that they’re not adjustable. This means that if your doors start to sag or become misaligned, you’ll need to replace the entire hinge. Additionally, pivot hinges can be difficult to align properly, which can result in doors that are difficult to open and close.

22. Self-closing cabinet hinges

What is a self-closing cabinet hinge?

It is a type of hinge that has a mechanism that allows the door to close itself. It is commonly used in kitchen cabinets, bathroom vanities, and other types of cabinets where you want the door to close on its own.

Pros and cons of self-closing cabinet hinges:

Self-closing cabinet hinges are great for preventing little fingers from getting trapped in doors. They’re also useful for ensuring that doors close quietly and smoothly.

However, self-closing hinges can be adjusted to close too slowly or too quickly, which can be frustrating. In addition, they require more frequent cleaning than other types of hinges due to the small gap between the door and the frame.

23. Semi-concealed hinges

What is a semi-concealed hinge?

A semi-concealed hinge is a type of cabinet hinge that is not completely concealed when the door is closed. This means that part of the hinge is visible. Semi-concealed hinges are often used on cabinets with doors that have a lip, such as Shaker style doors.

Pros and cons of semi-concealed hinges:

Semi-concealed hinges are a great choice if you want to add a decorative touch to your cabinets. They’re also easy to install and adjust. However, they’re not as strong as some other types of hinges, so they might not be the best choice for very heavy doors.

Another consideration is that semi-concealed hinges are not adjustable once they’re installed, so you’ll need to make sure they’re properly aligned before attaching them to the door.

24. Soft-close cabinet hinges

What is a soft-close cabinet hinge?

A soft-close cabinet hinge is a type of door hinge that has a mechanism that allows the door to close slowly and quietly. These hinges are great for cabinets in high-traffic areas or homes with small children, as they prevent the doors from slamming shut and causing damage or injury.

Pros and cons of soft-close cabinet hinges:

The main advantage of soft-close hinges is that they allow for a much smoother closure of cabinet doors, which can be helpful if you have young children in the home. Additionally, soft-close hinges can help to prevent damage to your cabinets over time by reducing wear and tear.

One potential downside of soft-close hinges is that they may be more expensive than traditional cabinet hinges. Additionally, some people find that soft-close hinges can make it more difficult to open and close cabinets, particularly if they are not properly adjusted.

25. Strap hinges

What is a strap hinge?

A strap hinge is a type of door hinge that consists of two metal plates connected by a central rod or bar. The plates are typically made of steel, although they can also be made of other materials such as brass or bronze.

The central rod is usually threaded so that it can be adjusted to provide different levels of tension.

Pros and cons of strap hinges:

Strap hinges are the most common type of hinge used on doors and cabinets. They are strong and durable, and can be used on both interior and exterior doors. However, strap hinges can be difficult to install, and they require screws or nails to secure them in place.

In addition, strap hinges can be visible when the door is open, which can be a drawback if you are trying to achieve a sleek and modern look.

26. Surface mount hinges

What is a surface mount hinge?

A surface mount hinge is a hinge that mounts to the surface of your door or cabinet. These hinges are easy to install, and they provide a clean look for your cabinets.

Pros and cons of surface mount hinges:

Surface mount hinges are the most popular type of hinge used in cabinetry. They are easy to install and provide a clean, finished look. However, they can be difficult to align properly and may not provide as much support as other types of hinges.

27. Variable overlay hinges

What is a variable overlay hinge?

A variable overlay hinge is a type of door hinge that allows you to adjust the positioning of the door. This is useful if your doors are not exactly flush with the frame or if you want to adjust the amount of space between the door and the frame.

Pros and cons of variable overlay hinges:

Variable overlay hinges are a type of concealed hinge that allow you to adjust the amount of overlay on your cabinet doors. This can be useful if you want to change the look of your cabinets, or if you need to make adjustments to fit different door sizes.

The main advantage of these hinges is their adjustability; however, they can also be more difficult to install than other types of hinges.

28. Wraparound hinges

What is a wraparound hinge?

A wraparound hinge is a type of door hinge that is commonly used on doors that have an inactive leaf, or the door that does not have a knob.

It is also frequently used as double acting spring hinges on heavy doors. This type of hinge wraps around the side of the door and the frame, providing more support and stability to the door.

Pros and cons of wraparound hinges:

There are several benefits to using a wraparound hinge:

-They are very strong and durable, making them ideal for heavy doors.

-They are adjustable, so you can fine-tune the fit of your door.

-They are easy to install, so you can do it yourself without hiring a professional.

There are a few drawbacks to wraparound hinges:

-They can be visible when the door is open, so they may not be ideal for use in formal spaces.

-They can be difficult to adjust if you don’t have experience with them.

-They may not work well with lightweight doors.

Types of Hinge Finishes

There are many different types of hinge finishes available on the market today. Some of the most popular finishes include:

-Chrome

-Brushed Nickel

-Satin Brass

-Oil Rubbed Bronze

Each finish has its own unique look and feel, so it’s important to choose the one that best suits your personal style.

Features to look for when buying a cabinet hinge

When shopping for a new cabinet hinge, there are several features you’ll want to keep in mind. Here are four things to look for when making your purchase:

-Strength and durability: A good hinge should be able to withstand years of use without breaking or becoming damaged. Look for hinges made from sturdy materials like steel or brass.

-Adjustability: You’ll want to be able to adjust the tension on your hinges so that your doors open and close smoothly. Look for hinges that offer easy adjustment.

-Finish: The finish on your hinges should match the rest of the hardware in your kitchen or bathroom. Choose from finishes like stainless steel, oil-rubbed bronze, or polished chrome.

-Size: Make sure to measure the size of your door and choose hinges that will fit properly. Hinges come in a variety of sizes, so you should be able to find one that will work for your needs.

Conclusion

There are many different types of cabinet hinges available on the market, each with its own advantages and disadvantages. It is important to choose the right type of hinge for your specific needs in order to ensure that your cabinets function properly and look their best. With so many options to choose from, taking the time to research the different types of hinges before making a purchase can save you time and money in the long run.