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6 Best Screws for Cabinets – Updated Reviews and Guide

You finally have the time to install new kitchen cabinets and on the lookout for the best screws for cabinets. Is there a specific set of screws that can hold a cabinet?

How about screws for assembling the cabinet (i.e. getting the cabinet door attached to the body)? There is indeed a cabinet screw.  It’s made for the purpose of securing kitchen wall cabinets to the wall.

It usually has a head with a big diameter in order to secure the cabinet on the hanging rail. Selecting screws will depend on the size of the cabinet, the reason a screw is needed and the type of wood for the cabinet .

Our Top Picks

Need for Special Screws

Besides these factors, you have to consider that cabinets are made of different types of wood and materials. Thus, there’s not one type of screw that will be suitable all these cabinets, nor one that will serve your purpose.

Cabinets need a special screw, and selecting will depend on what the screw will hold or fasten. There’s a screw that’s designed to hold hanging cabinets in place, one that will attach the cabinet doors to the body.

Still, there are designed for wood-to-wood fastening and those that can hold your drinking glasses and plates that you store in the cabinet.

Types of Cabinet Screws

In installing your cabinet, you’ll need these types of screws:

Cabinet to wall screws

This is the toughest of the bunch as it can hold the cabinet in place, and take on the weight of its contents. As you browse through your hardware store, here are features you ought to look for, so you’ll get the right cabinet-to-wall screw:

  • Big, flat head and a strong shear that can sustain holding power.
  • Aggressive thread that can properly penetrate the wood and stay in place.
  • Self-tapping design that ensure smooth penetration into the wood, and will not cause splitting in the process.
  • Usually are long to cover the cabinet’s thickness and go through the wall.

Cabinet to cabinet screws (Frameless or face frame)

These type of screws have the cabinet sides attached together in such a way that there are no gaps between the sides or face frames. For this, it’s ideal for the screw to have a washer head, case steel and a recessed star drive.

Cabinet to cabinet screws (Face frame)

These screws make sure the frames of a face frame cabinet are aligned, and firmly attached together. This is important as this will ensure the cabinet can hold its contents together.

For this application, it’s best to use trim head screws. These are the ones that have a very small head that can be hidden at the edge of the face frame.

Cabinet to cabinet post screws (Frameless)

Another instance when screws should be installed tightly. For this kind of screw, you have a male and female side that you can join together from either side of the two cabinets.

This is usually used at the top and bottom shelf pin holes.  Pro tip: We suggest that you use Loctite to make it tighter (don’t worry you can still remove this, but it’s essentially locked.

Trim head screw

A trim head, or finish head screw has small head so that it can be easily hidden. For cabinets, these are placed directly in the face frame.

These are necessary in order to have full control over the grip of the frame. Apart from being used to assemble cabinets it’s used for decorative molding and trim.

Machine screws (for drawers)

Machine screws are used to affix knobs and handles on your cabinets. Be ready to stack up on the different sizes of screws and be ready to customize them.

Note that most custom cabinet fronts are 3/4″,  and drawer sides 3/4.″ To put knobs, you’ll need  about 1/4″  of screw length.

Given this, a 1-5/8″ machine screw can make the installation smoother. The problem is, more hardware manufacturers don’t make this type of screw.

Confirmat screw

Confirmat screws are designed specifically for putting together furniture carcass. What makes them stand out is aa very coarse, sharp angled thread.

With this, the screws can cut into MDF chipboard materials. Confirmat screws are particularly effective for right angle butt joints.

Best Screws for Cabinets Reviews

It’s a little daunting to choose the right screw, given the diverse needs and purposes, parts of the cabinet and the materials used in its assembly.

These are the factors we considered in coming up with the list of the top screws. Moreover, we have done the research and have tested a significant number in each category.

And after going through the process here are best screws for your cabinet:

1. Best Overall – Jake Sales Head Screw

Jake Sales Head Screw tops durability, strength and the material used in making the screw. Its modified truss washers gives it additional compression strength.

Plus, it has a triple-layer bronze coating, making it tough. And at the core, it has heat-treated steel for shear strength.  Besides being reliable, these materials make it easy for the screw to go through wood easily. It’s big head gives a tighter hold.

These are the attributes that have earned praise from professionals and DIY enthusiasts. The screw impressed that some say this is their go-to screw when something in their home needs to be fixed.

The minor drawback is that it’s a bit pricey, but gives value as users were able to use every piece, as some said none broke while being screwed on.

In addition, some reported that the bronze coating doesn’t last as expected. Plus, this Jake Sales offers limited length options.

What We Liked Most

  • Truss washers gives high compression strength.
  • Triple-layer bronze coating makes it tough.
  • Heat-treated steel adds shear strength.

What Could Be Improved

  • A bit pricey.
  • The bronze coating doesn’t last as expected.
  • Limited length options.

2. Best for Heavy Loads – Fastcap Torx Powerhead Screw

Fastcap PHZ8.2.5''-TORX PowerHead Cabinet Installation Wood Screws - 150 Pack

Fastcap Torx Powerhead screw ticks every box on being the ideal screw for installing cabinets. It’s long enough to get through the cabinet and still has extra length to ensure it is firmly wedged into the wall.

It also stands out with its square-shaped drive system, and zinc exterior finish. These give it increased durability. Moreover, this can go through wood easily, with its thread type and point style.

Its flat head ensures that it is embedded tightly on the wall. The design also enables the screw to blend into the wall after installation.

Plus, Fastcap made sure you’ll have enough screws to fully install your cabinet. Upon purchase, you’ll notice that you have 150 screws in the pack.

The drawback is that it can be too long for thin cabinets. Thus, make sure it will suit your project before purchasing.

What We Liked Most

  • Can carry heavy loads
  • Penetrates wood easily
  • Flat head secures cabinet in place
  • Great value
  • Durable
  • Hides well after cabinet installation

What Could Be Improved

  • Can be too long for thin cabinets.
  • Leaves noticeable small holes.

3. Best Non-splitting – GRK Cabinet Bulk 8 by 2-12 inch (GRKCAB8212B)

Thin and strong. These don’t always go together, but are the best attributes of GRK Cabinet Bulk 8. It’s thin design is perfect for penetrating wood without causing any splitting.

And after it goes through, you can screw it in place easily because of its washer design. It works as advertised and the drawbacks in using it are more like nitpicks.

A disadvantage is that it costs more than the competition. But it will be worth it, considering only a few will break, if at all. Size may be an issue, as some find it a bit small.

Other users, meanwhile, say the screw is not compatible to some power drivers and when it is not, has he tendency to pop out.

What We Liked Most

  • Thin and strong.
  • Penetrates wood without splitting.
  • Can be easily screwed in place.
  • Looks great.

What Could Be Improved

  • The sizes might be a bit small.
  • Not compatible with some power drivers.

4. Best for Cabinet Face Frames – GRK Trim Handy 8 X 2½” Head Screw

Small enough not to cause splitting, but well-designed to easily go through wood, Trim Handy joins the list of screws from GRK that are praised by carpenters.

It has a self-tapping thread design and a small head for no-sweat installation. But it’s still best to pre-drill holes before placing the screws in. A few seconds to drill is worth it, just to ensure that the wood would not have any splitting.

GRK also made it convenient,  as the screws are packaged with drill heads that fit the screw. And once they’re in, you’re sure that they’re securely in place.

One criticism is that it’s not made of stainless steel, but it does have waterproof coating. Plus, some users find the screw set a bit pricey.

What We Liked Most

  • Great design and quality.
  • Excellent in securing face frames.
  • Dependable holding power.
  • Easy to use.
  • Has waterproof coating.
  • Comes with drill heads.

What Could Be Improved

  • Needs pre-drilling on hardwoods.
  • Not made of stainless steel.
  • A tad pricey.

5. Best for Cabinet Restoration – Kreg SML-C250-2000 2½ Pocket Screws

Kreg SML-C250-2000 2½ pocket screws stand out because of their anti-rust capability. Hence, it’s useful when you need to replace doors and cabinet frames that were damaged by moist or submerged in water.

Or alternatively, use these pocket screws for projects that will be constantly exposed to moist and water. These Kreg pocket screws have square-drive heads that ensure cabinet joints are securely fastened and that they do not overdriving into them.

Plus, the screw is surrounded by a hard steel case. With this, it can withstand going through thick cabinets. Moreover, you can depend on its 17-inch auger, a self-tapping edge that can easily penetrate the wood and not cause splitting.

All the above features offer good value. In addition, some users comment that the packaged screws are so reliable that only 1 of 1,000 broke before getting into the wood. So, best to buy these in bulk.

On the downside, these are not suitable for wood-to-wall installation and we suggest to drill holes into the cabinet before inserting the screw.

What We Liked Most

  • Anti-rust capability
  • Great design
  • Value for money, especially when bought in bulk;
  • Easy to use
  • Strong holding power

What Could Be Improved

  • Not suitable for wood-to-wall installation.
  • Needs pre-drilling.

6. Best for Size Options – H.C Pull Machine Screws

Knob/Pull Machine Screws 8/32 Thread (25 per Pack) Cabinet Door and Drawer Screws (Choose Your Size) by E.H.C (8-32 x 1')

Knob/Pull Machine Screws 8/32 Thread (25 per Pack) Cabinet Door and Drawer Screws (Choose Your Size) by E.H.C (8-32 x 1")

  • QUALITY: Knob and Pull Screws are zinc-plated steel construction. Zinc-Plated Truss Head Combo Drive Cabinet and Knob Screws will provide durability and corrosion resistance. Attach knobs or pulls to cabinet doors or drawer faces
  • VALUE: No need to run to local Hardware or Big Box Store to look for someone to help you. 25 screws per order.
  • USES: Common project applications: remodeling, fencing, storage, cabinets, framing and DYI projects.
  • How many: 1 pack of 25 Truss head combination Phillips #8-32 x 1 in.

If you’re not sure on which size you’ll need when assembling your cabinet, best to purchase H.C. Pull Machine Screws. You get to choose from 11 different screw sizes, so chances are, you’ll find the right one for your cabinet.

Every screw is made of zinc-plated steel that ensures reliability. This also gives ample protection against rust and corrosion.

Users praise the high quality, and have attested that the screws do their job in putting the pieces together. It also offers great value, as you’ll have 25 screws per pack.

Some users feel the heads should be bigger, and noticed that it’s highly possible that the screw gets stripped.

What We Liked Most

  • Comes in 11 different sizes.
  • Made up of quality steel.
  • Has zinc-coating, protected against rust and corrosion.
  • Great value, has 25 screws per pack.

What Could Be Improved

  • Small heads, may not suit all applications.
  • Possible for coating to get stripped.

Best Screws for Cabinets Comparison Table

Three Cabinet Screws to Avoid

As earlier mentioned, not all screws can be used to secure cabinets on walls. For this, we have to consider the holding power and how the head will not let the whole cabinet slipped off.

In the same manner, not all screws are suitable for the cabinet’s joints and in installing drawers and doors.

There are, however, three screws that you must not use in installing cabinets:

Drywall screws

There are a couple of reasons drywall screws are not suitable for cabinet installation. First is its bugle-shaped head. With this shape, the screw tends to get buried into the wood, instead of sticking out of the wood and holding the cabinet in place.

Moreover, drywall screws have a Phillips head. With this you need to press down the screw while turning it, in order to avoid cam-out. This, while you’re holding the wall cabinet on the other hand.

Further, these type of screws are a little brittle. Hence, it’s risky to put the weight of the cabinet on it. Note that cabinet screws are also thicker and has a sharper tip which makes them better for installing cabinets.

Drawer manufacturer screws

Avoid these because they are not dependable. They will not last years, especially if you put a lot of contents and frequently open and close the drawer. A good alternative is a Rok #8 screw.

Deck/outdoor screws

Although it’s possible to use this, it’s not advisable, considering the screw’s length and the weight of the cabinet and its contents.

If you must use deck screws, you can  use  2½-inch deck screws (with washers) through the back of the cabinet, and through studs.

The Basic Anatomy of a Screw

A screw is composed of five parts: head, drive, shank, thread, and tip.

Head – refers to the top of the screw; the drive is also part of the head.

There are two types of screw head styles – countersunk and non-countersunk. Countersunk has an angled shape underneath the head.

This requires countersinking so that the wood will not split when you use a drill or put pressure. When they penetrate the wood, the head sits flush on the surface, with little or no protruding parts.

Thus, these are used in projects where the screw head should be submerged or at the same level of the surface. These are usually used on bridge decks, walkways, and handrails.

Non-countersunk, on the other hand, is flat under the head and does not need countersinking. Its head is fully exposed on the surface.

Drive – shape of the mechanism that enable screws to be in place. Types of drive include cross-head, star, square, hex socket, slotted, Philips, torx and Robertson.

Shank – long and narrow body connecting the head to the tip. Most screws have a fully threaded shank that’s defined by helical ridges.

Thread – a ridge wrapped around a cylinder or cone in the form of a helix, with the former being called a straight thread and the latter called a tapered thread.

Tip –  pointed end of a screw. The tip is crucial for the screw to penetrate wood.

Cabinet Installation Screws Buyer’s Guide

Size

One consideration in choosing screw size is the make-up of the wall the cabinet is gong to be hanged. Screw sizes may vary from 2-1/2″ up to 3-1/2″), the ideal screw to  attach cabinets to a wall would be No.8 or No. 10 screws. These are around 3½ inches long.

For cabinet knobs, you’ll usually see a standard #8-32 threading. It’s also better if the screw has a Truss head design, which has a flatter profile than a regular head screw.

Construction

Regardless of the cabinet make, a cabinet to wall screw should have a large, flat head design. This ensures that they can hold up the cabinet.

For cabinet to cabinet construction, you’ll just need regular cabinet screws.

Coating

A good coating is a must, regardless of the material of the cabinet. With this, your screw will be protected against rust and corrosion.

There are those coated with zinc, have anti-corrosion layers, and polymers.

Head

Cabinet screws have a star-style head, different from the flat head the regular screws. This is good as this prevents stripping.

The design also protects against tampering and ensures the screw is tightly in place.

Quantity

Be ready with at least 10 screws. The number will increase depending on the model. Best to buy in bulk, rather than be back in the store or order again.

Plus, in most cases, those with numerous also have a kit of fasteners, giving you great value.

Torque Speed

What’s important is the speed a screw goes through materials. So choose screws that will drive quickly and effortlessly.

FAQs

What size screws to attach cabinets to wall?

Attach cabinets to the wall using No. 8 or No. 10 screws, approximately 3½ inches long. 10”X 3” screws are ideal for securing cabinets if there are studs on the other side, and for concrete walls.

Are cabinet screws the same as wood screws?

No, cabinet screws are not the same as wood screws. The difference is noticeable on their built and appearance. Their shapes are different, most especially on the head.  Wood screws usually has flat heads., Cabinet screws, on the other hand, usually have washer-like heads.

How long should cabinet screws be?

Screw length depends on the make of the wall. Most screws range from 2-1/2″ up to 3-1/2.″

How to screw into wood without drill

You can screw into wood without drilling by using the timeless, handheld screwdriver. This tool is your best bet if you need to install screws on a small or delicate wood project.

Conclusion

The best screws for cabinets are the ones that have strong holding power, aggressive thread that can easily penetrate and stay in place.

Besides this strength, they should be able to penetrate wood quickly and without splitting. It also should have a coating that protects against rust and corrosion.

Price is a factor, but consider the number of screws in a pack. Buying one pack with more screws will give you more value, as you have to think of the number of screws that would cam-out or not be usable and needs to be replaced.

Moreover,  make sure that the screws you purchase are made  specifically for cabinets and stay away from drywall screws, and deck/outdoor screws.

Also it’s better to purchase third-party screws for drawers, not rely on those pre-packaged by the manufacturer.

Ultimately, your choice will depend on the cabinet make, age and the thickness of the wall to which you’ll attach the cabinet.