Installation Guide

General guide, Spacer Panels, Cover Panels & Worktops

Adam Vergette avatar
Written by Adam Vergette
Updated over a week ago

Before installing your kitchen it helps to have the following items to hand...

Your IKEA design - the unit numbers match your Plykea Visual

Your Plykea Visual - the numbered items (which match your ikea plan) refer to the fronts, cover panels, filler panels and spacers. These are also engraved on the back of each item.

Your Packing List - delivered with your order, the unit numbers refer back to your IKEA design and Plykea Visual. The hand written letters refer to the labelled wrapped package - A, B, C etc

Top Tips for Install - details below

IKEA installation guide - downloadable from, printed leaflets included with your IKEA order

Visual / Item List / Packing List

Each individual item is numbered following the Ikea unit numbers. As there may be multiple items in one pack, this list identifies what can be found within each pack. Each front is engraved on the reverse side, either bottom centre or near a hinge cup, to easily map out which front or panel goes where. A stack of fronts will also include a letter - i.e 1A, 1B, 1C - from bottom to top. For veneer fronts it’s essential this sequence is followed to maintain the grain continuity.

KEY CP = Cover Panel, FP = Filler Panel, SP = Spacer Panel, TP = Top Panel, U = Underside Panel, BK = Back Panel.

Protective film
It’s common for the laminate protective film to be damaged during production, however we thoroughly check items for damage before taping over the area to give them full protection during installation.It is important to keep the protective film on until the installation is fully completed in order to preserve the pristine condition of the fronts. Nevertheless, it is not recommended to store the doors with this film on as the lettering/ logos may leave marks on the laminate surface. Once the doors are installed and exposed to direct sunlight, we strongly advise removing the protective film immediately to avoid the transfer of logos/ lettering. Additionally, it is important to promptly remove the masking tape once installed.

Cover Panels, Filler Panels and Plinths are supplied oversized. Cover panels can be trimmed face up with a sacrificial board underneath. Cutting requires a sharp blade. Sand and seal cut edges with sandpaper and a couple of coats with Osmo Polyx Oil Raw 3044.

Spacer Panels

Spacer Panels should be installed as you are assembling your carcasses. We recommend attaching them by clamping and then screwing from the inside of the carcass, utilising the pre drilled holes so that the screw head is hidden. We supply them in pairs, 1 sits at the front of the carcass, 1 near the back to ensure even spacing and prevent the carcass twisting.

IKEA hinges and drawer runners are 'soft-close', they also come with small stick on bumpons. Spacer panels should sit proud of the carcass at the following intervals to ensure they're flush with a closed door/ drawer.

Birch fronts - 20mm (18mm front + 2mm bumpon)
Oak / Walnut fronts - 21mm (19mm front + 2mm bumpon)
Formica / Fenix - 22mm (20mm front + 2mm bumpon)

Spacer Panels for Wall Cabinets

If you decide not to have Cover Panels running under your wall cabinets there will be a visible gap on the underside between the cabinets. Your installer will need to mitre (cut them at a 45 deg angle) the Spacer Panels and join the lengths to create an 'L' shape so that the gap will be filled. The 'L' should be sufficient to prevent any twisting in the carcass, however, for a rock solid fixing, the excess offcut can always be attached near the back.

Spacer Panels for 'Framing' the carcass

Some customers like the total plywood finish so we supply Spacer Panels to run along the top front of their carcasses as well as in-between to give a 'Framed' aesthetic. We supply these Spacer Panels slightly over length so that your installer can cut them to length on site for an exact finish.

If you have a top piece, cover panels* are supplied 20mm higher to extend 20mm higher than the unit, to cover the sides, with the top piece sitting only at the front.

*please also see Cover Panels

Cutting Cover Panels & Worktops

We normally supply Cover Panels at 67cm deep as opposed to IKEA's standard of 62cm and Worktops at 70cm deep to give you and your installer flexibility with your installation. Please double check the dimensions on your order sheet. IKEA have designed METOD so that plumbing and other services run underneath the carcass, however, in our experience some kitchen fitters prefer to screw a wooden stud (batten) to the wall which steps the kitchen out and creates a service void behind the carcass. Therefore, our Cover Panels allow enough material for a standard piece of wooden stud + the carcass + the door + approx 1cm of play. Worktops have an additional 3cm of play for you to tailor your overhang. The excess material can be easily cut off, allowing your installer to 'scribe' the panel and get a really snug fit against your wall.

To avoid chipping when cutting the Fenix/Formica/Arpa, we recommend that you put masking tape over where you want to cut and use a sacrificial board underneath. Use a fine cut, super sharp blade in a plunge saw, not a jigsaw.

If you need to finish any cut edges, use 120 then 320 grit sandpaper, followed by Osmo Polyx Oil Raw (3044). Wipe off with a rag after 1-2 minutes, then run over with 320 grit again. Be careful to clean off any excess before it dries!

When specifying Cover Panels to run under a row of wall cabinets or on the back of an island we recommend making them slightly longer than required so that your installer can cut them to length on site for an exact finish.

For ease of fitting, cover panels are supplied with the location number discreetly engraved on the back. Please ensure this is used as the back and not installed face out!

In an attempt to reduce waste, the majority of wood veneered cover panels are supplied with only one side lacquered. These panels have two lines engraved, indicating that this is the back. The panels will be lacquered on the front and up to these two lines only on the back.

Similarly, back and filler panels are also finished on one side. These panels have an X engraved, indicating that this is the back.

Joining Two Worktops
Joining two pieces of worktop is a straightforward process with the right tools and the right knowhow. Most kitchen fitters will be skilled enough to create a Mason's mitre which is a seamless join using a router and worktop jig to cut a curved joint but you can also use a circular saw with a fine tooth blade to square cut the material and create a butt joint. The two pieces of worktop can then be joined using biscuit dowel and worktop connector bolts. We recommend using zip bolt connectors as they have different sizes which can be used on 18, 24 & 30 mm worktops. For jointing 18 & 24mm use the Mini Benchtop connector (6 x 100mm).

This video illustrates the process of routing and joining the worktop

When your installer is fitting two pieces of worktop together it is likely there will be a slight gap so they should use a joint sealant either Formica Lifeseal for Formica, Bushboard Complete Sealant for Fenix or Colorfill can usually match for both finishes. This will ensure there is no water ingress and give you a seamless aesthetic.

There are over 250 colours to choose from in the ColorFill range so it is likely that there is a shade for your choice of worktop. If you can't find the colour reference on the link below you can call them on 0191 259 0033.

You can see the colour options here

Align The Doors and Drawers

This information is included in the IKEA documents but we like to highlight it as so many fitters overlook this simple yet important final step. Adjusting the doors and drawers balances the shadow gap between units. Take a look at this great video to see how easy it is.

To adjust IKEA drawer doors, you need a Philips head screw driver. The drawer fronts can be adjusted left and right, up and down.

Left and right adjustments are made using the front screw. Both sides need to be altered equally, for example if one side is altered a 1/4 turn clockwise, the opposite side should be altered a 1/4 turn anti-clockwise.

For up and down adjustments turn the back screw, as below. Each side can be altered independently to make different adjustments to the height of each side.

On the taller drawer fronts, you can adjust the tilt front to back by turning the plastic screw at the start of the drawer rail.

IKEA doors can be adjusted up and down or tilted front to back and left and right. Use a Philips head screw driver to adjust the hinges as the below diagram shows.

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