There is nothing quite like the polish and shine of brand-new countertops – and for most property owners, it is a bathroom or kitchen upgrade worth their time, money, and energy. Fresh surfaces with a complimentary backsplash can give new life to areas around people’s homes.
If they are looking for budget-friendly options and wondering if a new countertop and backsplash can be installed Do-It-Yourself, the answer is a resounding yes. However, the job requires specialized tools and is pretty time-consuming. In this article, we will take a closer look at how to install new countertops.
Installing new countertops: Preparation
Besides the materials, people will need to check off a couple of pre-project checklist before installing a new countertop. Here are some additional planning items people need to consider:
- The project budget
- The materials people wish to install
- The textures, patterns, and colors to find the perfect match
- How the new countertop fits into the overall renovation
Popular types for Do-It-Yourself installation
Popular materials like granite and other natural stone countertops and backsplashes, which installation firms can easily do. But laminates and composite materials are pretty popular and a lot easier, as well as lighter to Do-It-Yourself install.
Laminate countertops can cost around $800 to $1,700 to install, making them an affordable option for property owners. Laminate or solid-surface countertops like Formica are also a lot easier to maintain and repair. They come in different designs, patterns, and colors, making them a Do-It-Yourself-friendly alternative, in line with other materials like reclaimed wood.
Check out this site for info about Formica.
Design and cut a countertop template
Installing new countertops and backsplashes is definitely a measure-twice-cut-once-kind of project. The most important, as well as a time-consuming first step in the Do-It-Yourself installation is to take the measurement, mark the materials, cut the dimension of the laminate counter, and decide where the furniture and appliances will go.
Property owners also need to make sure to take into consideration the counter overhang, which is between three and one inch. After cutting the material, people should secure their laminate slab with clamps to stable surfaces.
They can use a pencil or masking tape to measure their cut lines, file, or sandpaper to smooth it out. Some premade templates are readily available in most home-improvement stores on the Internet. If the property owner’s space is a straightforward layout or a simple slab, cutting the countertop may not be needed, and they can order standard prefab materials.
Prepare the area
Before installing a new countertop or removing the old ones, some preparatory work is needed. Property owners will need to:
- Disconnect the water source to the bathroom or kitchen where they are working
- Remove appliances like drain trap, range, and sink
- Scrape away the backsplash caulking that holds it in place
- Remove the old backsplash, as well as all extra tiles
If individuals are reinstalling the same furniture or appliance later, put them in a safe and dry place. Also, homeowners need to ensure their screws and other installation materials are organized nearby.
Remove old countertops
With all the caulking and the wall that connected the backsplash gone, the owners need to remove the corner screws and bolts that hold the old countertop in place. With screws and bolts out, owners need to be able to slide the old slab off in one piece.
If the old slab were attached with silicone, they might need to use a damp and warm rag over the silicone to loosen it up. After that, they can use abrasive scrubbing pads to remove what is left. Homeowners can enlist the help of family members or friends to lift the old slab and move it somewhere safe and out of the way.
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Dry fit the brand-new counter
To test the measuring work, homeowners can place the new slab they have already cut in the area. They can check to see if the counter fits. Most importantly, the counter should fit perfectly against the wall. People should use a specialized tool like a belt sander for minor dimensions and cutting errors.
Secure the new counter to the cabinets
Once homeowners get the right fit, it is time to secure the new counter. Most manufacturers will recommend their process for attaching their products. For laminate slabs, there are two possibilities:
Property owners will have to apply manufacturer adhesive or caulk along the top edges of the cabinets where the new slab meets. In this instance, they may need to use small pieces of wood or shims every twelve to eighteen inches to hold the slab up slightly while the adhesive dries.
The laminate counter peels and sticks, and people only need to remove the barrier during installation. Let the caulk or manufacturer adhesive dry for a couple of hours, and check the work. If there are any holes or gaps, add more adhesive or caulk to that area. Finally, fasten the countertop to the cabinets with bolts or screws.
Reinstall backsplash and seal wall joints
At this point of the project, the only part that is still exposed should be the space between the counter and the wall. The easiest way to seal the exposed parts is to draw an even line on the top using a caulk gun. If property owners should spruce up the wall involved, they can install tiles for the backsplash – the possibilities are endless. Before people can reinstall their appliances, they need to let the wall joint and backsplash dry for three to five hours.
Reinstall the appliances
Finally, homeowners can hook up the appliances they took out before the project started. Once the sink is installed, they can turn the water resource back on. They need to make sure they double-check everything.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do property owners measure their counter’s surface?
The best and easiest way to calculate the width and length of the counter is by using steel tape to determine the width and length of each section. When it comes to areas with furniture or appliances, they can remove the dimension of every device or item as they work. Once they have done all sections, owners can add the numbers together to get the exact figure.
How do they do outside corners on their counters?
Butt and Milter joints are two common methods if they are using laminate countertops. Property owners should do some research on mirror-cutting techniques to help them get started with the project. If this part seems out of their skillset, it might be worth asking for the help of a professional contractor so they get a perfect fit with no gap.