So, you have a lot of cabinets in the kitchen, in the bathroom and well, almost everywhere and some of them come with knobs to open them. Many older homeowners have a hard time to open these cabinets just because of the knob. Arthritis and other ailments can make the simple task of opening a knob a very difficult, annoying and even painful one. Replacing these knobs with handles solves the problem for our seniors. Think about it, opening a knob requires the full hand to operate it, while a handle can be opened with a couple of fingers, even with one if it’s not so heavy.
This is a very cheap project that can be accomplished with some pocket change. The low-end handles can cost less than $1 each and they do a better job than knobs. However, if you want to invest in quality and use something better, $5 per handle is still a reasonable price and quality will be really improved in this budget. It all depends on the size of your kitchen, but the average one has around 25 handles in all cabinets, drawers etc. Even paying $5 per each, you will end up investing around $100 for something that can change the life of your seniors. Installing handles is very easy. There are two main types of handles, the C and the D type. They are named after the letter they look like when viewed from the side.
Since this is a very cheap improvement, you can spend a little extra by buying first a few different handles and installing them so that your senior can check which one is easier to open and which one looks the better in your kitchen. They are very cheap so, no matter if later you don’t use them. When you go to the shop, make sure they come with screws, because some of they don’t and you’ll have to go again. And I know this sound stupid but count how many of then you need first. And count it twice or thrice. A kitchen has a many of them and it is easy to forget one or two and then having to go again to the shop for more materials.
Installing these handles is a very easy thing (see also how to install blinds). First thing we want to cover the previous hole with a dowel. Just use a dowel similar to the wood you have and some glue. Drill a hole and then cut the dowel to the right measure to fill the hole, wipe it with glue and insert it. Sand it to match the wood stain of your cabinets so that it won’t look odd. All you need to do afterwards is to drill new holes and follow the instructions given by the handle manufacturer. Many of them can be installed just with a small drill, and some screws. Be sure they are held in place correctly to prevent accidents, safety first!