laminate countertops in your kitchen can start to show signs of wear and tear. Small scratches and dull spots can make your kitchen counters look drab. But with a little elbow grease, you can revive laminate countertops to look like new again!
The key is using the right cleaning methods and products. Stay away from abrasive cleaners that can further damage the surface. For routine cleaning, use a mild detergent and warm water.
For deeper cleaning, apply a thin coat of countertop polish to protect and shine the laminate. Let the polish completely dry. You can also try using baking soda as a gentle scrub to remove stains.
Protect your investment by using a cutting board and avoiding placing hot items directly on the laminate. With proper care and maintenance, you can keep laminate countertops looking fresh for years to come.
This article provides tips to clean, polish, and revive your worn laminate.
Read on to learn how to make tired laminate countertops shine once again!
How To Revive Laminate Countertops
Laminate countertops are a popular choice for many kitchens and bathrooms due to their affordability, durability, and easy maintenance.
However, over time laminate countertops can start to show wear and tear. Scratches, stains, and dull surfaces can make your laminate counters look old and dingy.
With some elbow grease and the right products, you can restore the look of your laminate countertops and make them look like new again. Follow these steps to revive your laminate countertops:
Clean and Degrease Your Countertops
The first step is to give your laminate countertops a deep clean. This will remove built-up grime, grease, and bacteria that can dull the surface.
What to Use to Clean Laminate Countertops
- Warm water – Use warm, soapy water to cut through grease and grime. Avoid using hot water as it can warp and damage laminate.
- Dish soap – Choose a mild dish soap and make a diluted cleaning solution of 1-2 tablespoons of dish soap per gallon of warm water. The dish soap helps cut through grease.
- Vinegar – For disinfecting, create a cleaning solution of 1 part warm water to 1 part white vinegar. The vinegar naturally kills bacteria and disinfects.
- Baking soda – For scrubbing, make a paste of baking soda and water. Baking soda is a mild abrasive that will help lift dirt and grime without scratching.
- Hydrogen peroxide – Mix with baking soda and water to boost cleaning power. The bubbling action helps lift stains.
How to Degrease Laminate Countertops
- Remove everything from your countertops – appliances, kitchen tools, decor items. Having an empty surface makes cleaning easier.
- Mix your cleaning solution. Pick your cleanser of choice based on the level of grime. For routine cleaning, dish soap and warm water will suffice. For heavy grease buildup, use diluted vinegar.
- Apply the cleaning solution over the entire surface of the countertop. Use a sponge or soft cloth to distribute the cleaner. Let it sit for 5 minutes. This gives the cleanser time to cut through grease and grime.
- Scrub the countertops. Use a soft bristle brush or Dobie pad to gently scrub the surface. Apply light pressure and work in circular motions. Pay extra attention to heavily soiled areas.
- Rinse thoroughly with clean water. Wipe away all excess cleaner and residue with a clean, soft cloth. Going over the surface with clean water ensures no cleaner is left behind.
- Allow to completely dry. Don’t put anything back on the countertops until they are fully dry. Lingering moisture can damage laminate over time.
Repair Minor Damage
Small scratches, chips, and dents are common with laminate countertops. Thankfully, these are easy fixes that don’t require a professional.
How to Repair Scratches in Laminate Countertops
For light surface scratches, you can buff them out:
- Clean and dry the countertop to remove debris that could scratch further.
- Apply a thin coat of non-gel toothpaste to the scratch. Make sure to work it into the scratch groove.
- Buff the toothpaste into the scratch using a soft cloth and circular motions. Apply moderate pressure.
- Wipe away excess toothpaste and rinse. The scratch will be less visible.
- For deeper scratches, use a laminate repair kit. These contain coloured putty you can apply to fill in scratches. Buff to blend with the surface.
How to Repair Chips and Dents in Laminate Countertops
- Clean and sand the damaged area so it is smooth. Use 220 grit sandpaper and sand gently.
- Mix coloured epoxy resin to match your countertop colour. Pour a small amount directly into the chip or dent.
- Let the epoxy cure fully, then buff the repaired spot flush with the rest of the countertop.
- Use a laminate repair marker to colour any white edges around the repaired area. This helps it blend in seamlessly.
Refinish Your Countertops
If your countertops have extensive damage or just look generally worn, refinishing them makes them look brand new. Refinishing involves applying a clear top coat.
What to Use to Refinish Laminate Countertops
There are a few options:
- Epoxy resin – Pours on glossy and thick to resurface damaged areas or the entire countertop. Requires mixing two bottles.
- Polyurethane – Water-based is the best choice for laminate. Goes on thin and dries clear with a protective finish.
- Spray paint – Specialty laminate paint sprays on evenly and dries to a factory-like finish. Made to bond to laminate.
How to Apply a Laminate Refinishing Product
Here is how to apply polyurethane, for example:
- Clean and lightly scuff the countertop surface with 220-grit sandpaper. This helps the finish adhere properly.
- Apply painter’s tape around the edges to protect walls and backsplashes.
- Use an angled paintbrush to apply a thin coat of water-based polyurethane. Go with the grain and avoid pooling.
- Allow 2-3 hours to dry then sand lightly with 320 grit sandpaper. Wipe away dust.
- Apply a second thin coat and let dry fully overnight before use.
- If desired, apply a third coat for an ultra-smooth, glass-like finish.
Paint Your Countertops
For a fresh new look, laminate countertops can be painted. This allows you to change the colour completely.
What Type of Paint to Use for Laminate Countertops
The best paint for the job is a two-part epoxy paint made specifically for laminate surfaces. Unlike regular paint, it chemically bonds to the laminate so the color won’t chip or scratch off.
Some top options include:
- Rust-Oleum Transformations Countertop Paint Kit
- Giani Granite Countertop Paint Kit
- Gianni Supreme Paint Kit for Laminate
Avoid latex and enamel paints. The laminate needs an industrial bonding agent for the paint to adhere properly.
How to Paint Laminate Countertops
Painting laminate countertops takes careful prep and patience as you apply multiple coats. Follow these steps:
- Clean and lightly scuff the laminate with 220-grit sandpaper. Wipe away any dust.
- Apply the bonding primer that comes in the kit you choose. This allows the paint to adhere.
- Use painter’s tape to mask off edges and walls. Cut in cleanly with a brush.
- Follow kit instructions to mix the epoxy paint components together.
- Use a paintbrush or foam roller to apply the first coat in thin, even layers. Let dry for 2-3 hours.
- Gently sand then apply a second coat. For full coverage, apply 2-3 coats allowing proper drying time between coats.
- Remove painter’s tape and clean up any drips. Be very gentle with your freshly painted countertops for several days while the paint cures fully.
With the right products and techniques, you can make your worn laminate countertops look brand new again. Regular cleaning along with protecting the surface will help maintain your countertops after reviving them.
Use a cutting board rather than cutting directly on the countertop to avoid new scratches. Wipe up spills right away to prevent stains from setting in.
Avoid placing hot pans or abrasive cleaners like bleach directly on the surface. With proper care, your laminate countertops can continue looking fresh and new for years to come.
What are the pros and cons of painting laminate countertops?
- Affordable: Painting laminate countertops is a relatively inexpensive way to give your kitchen a new look.
- Customizable: You can choose any colour or finish you want for your countertops.
- DIY-friendly: Painting laminate countertops is a relatively easy DIY project, even for beginners.
- Long-lasting: A well-painted laminate countertop can last for many years.
- Requires prep work: The countertops need to be properly cleaned, sanded, and primed before painting.
- May not be durable: Painted laminate countertops may not be as durable as new laminate countertops.
- May require touch-ups: The paint may need to be touched up over time, especially in high-traffic areas.
- May not be suitable for all kitchens: If your kitchen gets a lot of heavy use, painted laminate countertops may not hold up well.
painting laminate countertops is a good option for homeowners who want to give their kitchen a new look on a budget.
However, it’s important to be aware of the potential drawbacks before making a decision.
Can I use a magic eraser on laminate countertops?
Yes, you can use a magic eraser on laminate countertops. Magic erasers are made of melamine foam, which is a mild abrasive that can be used to remove tough stains and scuff marks from a variety of surfaces. However, it’s important to use them sparingly, as too much scrubbing can damage the laminate finish.
With a few simple cleaning techniques, you can restore the look of worn laminate countertops in your kitchen. Be sure to use non-abrasive cleaners and avoid placing hot items directly on the surface.
Apply a thin coat of countertop polish and let it completely dry to protect the laminate from future wear.
Periodically cleaning with baking soda or a gentle detergent and warm water will keep your counters looking fresh. For deeper cleaning, use a soft cloth and clean the surface using long, even strokes.
Minor scratches can be reduced by rubbing the area with elbow grease using fine-grit sandpaper.
Treating small stains and restoring shine can go a long way in making tired kitchen counters look brand new. With proper care and maintenance, laminate will continue to be a beautiful, budget-friendly countertop option for busy kitchens.
We hope these tips help you revive and extend the life of your laminate countertops. Let us know if you have any other tricks for keeping laminate looking its best! And be sure to share this article if it is useful so others can learn how to refresh their worn laminate as well.