How to Install Cabinet Door Handles

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Modern bright kitchen cabinets handle pulls

Replacing or adding cabinet door handles is a great way to update a room. Modern, sleek pulls can transform an outdated kitchen and elevate a new bathroom. But the most important thing when it comes to installing door handles is about being precise. The handle hardware has to be perfectly straight and level. Cabinet hardware mistakes can cost upwards of hundreds to thousands of dollars, so it’s important to get it right the first time. 

Before cringing at the thought of doing this yourself, there’s good news – You don’t have to be an expert to get your cabinet door handles mounted exactly how you want them. With the right cabinet hardware tool and our step-by-step instructions, you can install your cabinet door handles quickly and with absolute precision. 

Learn how to install door handles like a professional by following a few simple steps, including tips for choosing the best cabinet hardware tool for the job.

Using a Cabinet Hardware Jig or Template to Install Your Door Handles

Before getting started with installing your cabinet door handles, you’ll need to decide which hardware tool is best to use. The thing about DIY projects is that you want it to look like you paid a professional to do the work. Making the right cabinet hardware tool choice can mean the difference between confident, efficient and accurate work or shaky measurements with uneven handles and poor results. Not to mention crooked cabinet hardware will drive you crazy.

There are two tool options out there – Cabinet Hardware Jigs and Templates. Both help you install cabinet door hardware, but there are a few significant differences between them.


Templates are fixed patterns that can either be made at home (homebuilt) or store-bought. The materials used to make templates are of low quality, therefore the costs tend to be cheap. Homebuilt templates are made from MDF board or scrap plywood and are limited to one option for installing cabinet hardware for one specific size and dimension. 

Store-bought templates are usually made of plastic. Similar to homebuilt templates they lack customization and adaptability. Despite having a few options for hole marking to help you decide where to place the knobs, they tend to only work with commonly available sizes of cabinet hardware. If you’re placing hardware outside of a set range, your template will not work. 

One of the biggest drawbacks to using templates is they tend to have a very limited lifespan. That’s because the more a template is used, the more the marking holes will enlarge over the course of each project, leading to immediate issues such as imprecise hole placement. And imprecise hole placement results in uneven knobs.

The Cabinet Hardware Jig ORIGINAL

The Cabinet Hardware Jig ORIGINAL (TP-CHJ) is completely adjustable and customizable. Any type of hardware can be mounted with the signature T-square frame. That means you only need one of the True Position Tools Cabinet Hardware Jigs to work for any type of cabinet door size and handle dimensions. Constructed from hardened aluminum and square to within five thousandth of an inch (.005″), this design leads to complete accuracy and precision. 

Pro Tip:

Not every jig out there is made like the ORIGINAL. Many of the imitation jigs overpromise and under-deliver. All of which leads to unsquared and inaccurate measurements. The Cabinet Hardware Jig ORIGINAL is made with only the highest-quality materials making it the most accurate jig on the market.

Other Benefits of Using The Original Cabinet Hardware Jig for Installing Cabinet Door Handles:

  • The Cabinet Hardware Jig ORIGINAL (TP-CHJ) is infinitely adjustable. This top-rated jig enables complete flexibility in your hardware choices and placement. 
  • Hardened steel bushings serve as drill guides and enable you to drill through them. This helps you keep the drill bit exactly where you want it.
  • The Cabinet Hardware Jig ORIGINAL is reversible. So once you’ve set up the exact parameters on the tool, you can drill on the left and right cabinet doors without altering any settings.
  • The jig works easily on any style cabinet, including shaker cabinets.
  • Save time and money by only using one cabinet hardware tool that gets the job done the first time around. 

Easy Steps for Knowing How to Install Cabinet Door Handles

When it comes to cabinet hardware placement, deciding where specifically on the cabinet door to place your pull handles is also important. Once you know where to install door handles, it’s time to get started.

1. Place hardware (measure as needed) to find position you like; mark bottom hole location.
2. Measure from bottom of door to mark

3. Set Sliding End Stop to measurement from step 2 and tighten thumb screw

4. Measure from side of door to mark you made from step 1

5. Set Large Stop to measurement from step 4 and tighten thumb screw

6. Measure hole centers

7. Transfer hardware measurement from step 6 to Sliding Drill Guide and tighten thumb screw

8. Position tool as shown, drill through fixed center bushing for bottom hole
9. Drill through Sliding Drill Guide for top hole
10. Reverse tool position onto opposite door and drill holes

Common Questions

Do I need to be a cabinet professional to use the Cabinet Hardware Jig? 

No, this cabinet hardware jig is straightforward and makes installing cabinet drawer handles easy. It’s all designed with you in mind. Whether you are learning how to install drawer handles over the weekend or regularly work with cabinet hardware installations, you’ll save time and money with our jig. 

What is the deepest drawer front I can center the Cabinet Hardware Jig on?

16″. We recommend placing your cabinet drawer handles towards the top of the drawer front, rather than the center. This will make the drawer easier to open and adds to the aesthetic appeal. 

What are the minimum door stile and rails I can center on?

½’’ is the minimum cabinet drawer stile and rails you can center on with a Cabinet Hardware Jig. The small and large end stops on the jig can even be reversed when extra clearance is needed. 

What is the maximum handle size I can install with the Cabinet Hardware Jig?

12” CC (300mm). Need to install cabinet drawer handles larger than this? The Cabinet Hardware Jig TP-1935 installs hardware up to 38’’ (960mm). If you have pull handles outside of this range, multiple jigs can be connected with thumbscrews to drill for any length you need.

How long is your bushing warranty?

We offer a lifetime bushing warranty. We’ll gladly send you a pack of replacement bushings free of charge if you ever need them. Bushings typically ship and arrive within 3 to 5 business days. 

Have more questions about How To Install Cabinet Drawer Handles and other cabinet hardware needs? Check out our FAQ Page.

Install Drawer Handles Like a Pro

Easily and efficiently install your cabinet drawer handles like a pro. At True Position tools, we put the power of tools into your hands. Cabinet hardware placement and high-quality specialty woodworking tools have been our game for more than 20 years. Our Cabinet Hardware Jigs will help you install your drawer handles perfectly every time. All True Position Tool Products are made in the USA. 

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