Kitchen drawers can be a deceptively important part of a remodel. The cabinetry of a kitchen is one of the first things that many people notice -- and the utility of a kitchen becomes incredibly important in day-to-day life. Many older kitchens have nothing but simple wood slides, which often stick and become difficult to use. Luckily, there are many other options.
Wooden Drawer Slides
The cheapest type of drawer slide, wooden slides are simply a smooth wooden slat on which the drawer slides in and out. These are great for a budget build but not much else -- if the wood warps at all or is later painted, the drawers can begin sticking. At the same time, a wooden drawer slide is simple to install and requires no clearance because there aren't any metal parts being added. Because of this, wooden drawer slides may be the only option for a tight fit.
Side Mount Drawer Slides
Side mount slides are mounted on the left and right side of the drawer itself. The sturdiest and most durable option, side mount slides can also open fully -- a full extension mount means that the entirety of the drawer can be used. Side mount slides are not possible when the fit of the drawer is tight, however, and they are generally mode expensive than other options.
Center Mount Drawer Slides
When replacing wooden slides, center mount slides are usually the ideal solution. Center mounts are placed at the center of the bottom of the drawer, which means they can be used on drawers that don't have enough space around them for side mount slides. Center mounts are not quite as sturdy as side mounts because there is only a single mount, but they are generally strong enough for any application.
Soft Close Drawer Slides
A special type of slide, soft close slides are a type of side mount. These expensive slides are considered the pinnacle of slide technology; rather than slamming shut, they cushion the drawer so that it slides shut slowly. For luxury kitchens, this is an excellent option.
Installing a kitchen slide is a fairly simple process, regardless of which type you choose. Generally slides are mounted to the back of the cabinet and the drawer itself -- a process that requires nothing more than a drill and a screwdriver. The measurements, however, need to be very precise. If you don't feel confident installing the drawers yourself, you might want to consider hiring a professional from a company like Brown's Plumbing instead.