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Cutting Through Laminate Countertops
Lamination is more appropriately described as cellulose-reinforced plastic, or even more precisely, high-pressure melamine and phenyl formaldehyde laminate. Laminate benchtops are often made of a layer of plastic laminate attached to a block of engineered wood such as particleboard or medium density fibreboard (MDF).
'Decorative laminates' are laminate surfaces used on kitchen benches. Cutting a laminate countertop is a reasonably simple procedure. Standard sizes of laminate countertops are available; you simply need to cut them to length to accommodate your counter space.
Cutting Countertops Using A Circular Saw
Step One: Gauge the size
Determine the size of the counter space you wish to cover. Measure the total area with a measuring tape to determine its length and width to use as a guide while searching for a laminate countertop.
Countertops are available in basic widths and in a variety of lengths that you can customise. Countertops are typically 25 in (64 cm) wide, which allows for a small amount of overhang when covering a typical space
Step Two: Purchase a laminate countertop
Purchase a laminate countertop off the shelf. Ensure you get laminate countertops that are as near to the ideal length as possible.
Step Three: Place the laminate countertop onto a secure surface
Place the piece of the prefabricated countertop that you bought on a secure work surface. Leave the part that will be chopped off hanging. Use C-clamps to secure it to the work surface for added stability.
Step Four: Measure the distance from the section you're cutting
With a measuring tape, identify the distance from the portion you're going to cut off, then mark the spot where you should cut.
Step Five: Use masking tape to mark the area you will be cutting
This step uses masking tape at least one inch (2.5 cm) broad. The masking tape marks the cut line with a carpenter's square. Where you need to cut the countertop, start by drawing a straight line on a masking tape that extends all the way down.
Step Six: Use a C-clamp to secure a piece of wood to the counter
You should use a C-clamp to secure a scrap piece of wood to the countertop. Make the guide rail by clamping the scrap piece of wood widthwise to the countertop and measuring this distance from the side you are cutting off. Clamp the wood firmly 3.116 in (7.8 cm) away from the cutting line if the distance linking the saw's blades is 3 inches (7.6 cm).
The additional 0.116 in (0.16 cm) allows for a small margin of error. If any of the laminate chips, remove the damage by sanding them after cutting the laminated benchtop.
Step Seven: Set the depth of your saw
Set the depth of your circular saw to be 1/8 inch (0.32 cm) deeper than the countertop. Set your saw just a little deeper than the thickness of the countertop that you measured. This will make it possible for the saw to cut across the entire countertop precisely.
The countertop's thickness is expected to be consistent throughout. If it varies in any way, it's a good idea to take many measurements and use the largest one to determine the saw depth. It should be able to be cut with a saw blade made for laminated particle board.
Step Eight: Sand the cut edge
Sand the cut edge to ensure it is exactly even with your mark. Now that the edge is perfectly parallel to the line you have cut, remove the masking tape. You won't need to sand if you precisely cut down the line. Now, take off the tape, and you're done!
Advantages Of Laminate Kitchen Benchtops
When it comes to using laminate to make a kitchen benchtop, people assume it's not a great idea. But all you have to know is that it has several unique benefits you wouldn't want to miss.
Some of the advantages of using laminate as a kitchen benchtop are as follows.
Easy to imitate natural materials
It is easy to imitate natural materials like stone or wood. Your benchtop will be simple to clean and resistant to scratches and stains if you choose a high-pressure laminate. Look for post-formed laminate if you do decide to use laminate. Laminate surrounds the entire surface, eliminating connections between the top and sides of the tabletop. This significantly lowers the likelihood of laminate peeling.
Large selection of colours and styles
The abundance of available design options may also be the reason why laminate is so popular for kitchen benchtops. With so many distinctive finishes to choose from, it's simple to tailor your kitchen to your particular living situation and way of life. There is a laminate to fit your kitchen, whether you want a rustic, textured wood appearance, a matte or glossy stone-effect surface, or both.
Simple to care for and stain-resistant
Wine, citrus fruits, tea, and coffee can damage some surfaces (such as travertine or granite) and must be avoided at all costs. On the other hand, laminate is resilient, simple to maintain, and resistant to exposure to acidic spills.
However, you must exercise caution to prevent directly exposing laminate surfaces to high temperatures; always use a heat mat before placing your boiling utensils on the surface. Do not chop food on this surface without the additional protection of a chopping board. Doing this can cause unsightly scratches.
Drawbacks Of Laminate Kitchen Countertops
Even though laminate has benefits, some considerations must be made. It is not as resilient as certain other materials, such as composites or stones. In actuality, laminate only lasts optimally for ten years on average. In addition to being prone to cuts and heat, laminate should not be used for food preparation or for setting hot pans directly on the surface.
Your laminated benchtop cannot be fixed if it is chipped. Do not clean laminate benchtops with abrasive cleansers. This will destroy the surface. Always measure your pros and cons while going for laminated benchtops.
Seek Professional Laminate Installer
Laminate is simpler to install because it is lighter than other benchtop materials. This is something to consider if you want to install as much of your kitchen as possible to cut costs. For many years, laminate bench tops have been a standard component of kitchen surfaces, and their use is only growing.
This is not surprising given the multiple benefits of utilising this durable material. Laminate is rapidly replacing stone and granite kitchen benchtops due to outstanding developments in its production. Consult a professional laminate installation company if you need repair or installation services.