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- Published: 20 November 2018 20 November 2018
Is your kitchen counter damaged or outdated? Renovate it to give your kitchen a style boost. Have you been hesitant at the thought of having to rip out the existing counter tops? Worry not; today there are several ways of covering the existing workspace without having to take out the old one first. There are certain materials that can be placed onto the old surface, each with its own advantages and disadvantages based on resistance to shock and heat, ease of maintenance, and longevity. Choosing to add as new surface onto an existing one will save you time, however your countertop will increase in thickness and height. In order for these work spaces to remain functional for everyone the height of the countertop should be between 85 and 95 cm from the ground. Here are 7 ideas to restore and revise your kitchen’s counter tops…
In DIY stores or on the internet you can find a variety of adhesive laminate and surface sheeting. They are usually used for backsplashes but can also cover a countertop. This coating is ideal for small budgets, it’s simple to install (cut to size using a box cutter or scissors) and can be very decorative. There are many models in imitation cement or marble tiles, metallic or even a polished concrete effect. Although these laminates are easy to maintain, they have the disadvantage of not adapting to irregular surfaces, such as tiled, and they are also less durable over time.
In the same way that you can restore an old worktop with tiling, you can also use mosaic sheets. Mosaic tends to be resistant to stains, wear and tear, and moisture. Mosaic also has a strong decorative power with a myriad of formats, shades, materials, and effects. These tiles are usually sold in framed sheets and are easy to install on a flat, clean and dry surface. Any defects in the surface must first be smoothed out using filler.
One way to renovate your countertops is by covering the existing surface with a sheet of laminate. Complete DIY kits (such as Renoplan) make it easy and usually work with standard 38mm and 65 cm deep worktops. All you have to do is place the sheets, screw in the finishing trim and smooth out or polish off the edges.
Renovating wood countertops
To give your worn and faded wooden worktop a makeover, consider renovating it before replacing or covering it. It is a slightly time consuming process but not complicated in itself. It consists of: sanding the surface, applying wood paste to any scratches to smooth the surface (making sure to follow manufacturer drying guidelines). Now sand the surface again anywhere you used wood paste, wiping off any residue or dust. The last step is to choose a stain and varnish colour and apply according to instructions; this will help protect the wood during use and prolong its lustre.
To give to your kitchen worktop a youthful look, why not consider painting it? There are indeed specific paints that are food grade and suitable for kitchens. Moreover they can cover any type of existing surface, including tiles. There is a large colour palette to choose from and some paints can even mimic certain materials such as cement. This is a relatively quick, easy, and budget-friendly way to renovate your countertops. Saying that, it is more of a short or mid-term solution as the paint will eventually wear down.
Resin is often used to renovate outdated counter tops because it provides a watertight and waterproof surface, and is therefore easy to maintain. On the other hand, resin is sensitive to heat, which means any hot dishes need to be placed on a mat to avoid direct contact between the resin and heat. One of the reasons resin is so popular is that it doesn’t need a base coat and can be applied to any surface. When it comes to the application, the most important thing is to prepare the surface to be painted (remove any varnish or wax from a wooden worktop, clean a tiled worktop with acetone, remove any joints or putty) and to ensure that there is absolutely no dust left. The product is then prepared by mixing the resin and the hardener. All that remains is to follow the application instructions of the different layers and to respect drying times which can be quite long.
Polished concrete is ideal for renovation. Not only does it bring a refined and designer touch to the kitchen, but it also has the advantage of being able to cover any type of surface (wood, ceramics, stainless steel, etc.). This coating can also be tinted in any colour by adding pigments and can have varied finishes such as matte, satin, lacquered or smooth. In addition, it is resistant to both water and thermal shock. Nevertheless, over time, polished concrete worktops become sensitive and more absorbent of stains, such as grease or acid stains. In addition its installation requires the thoroughness of a professional who must apply it to the trowel in several thin layers before vitrifying.