New Countertop Over Existing Formica Countertops - On the House

New Countertop Over Existing Formica Countertops

By on May 22, 2014
laminate counter tops

Question

My 1960’s home has a Formica countertop in the kitchen that’s in good shape, but we were thinking of updating it since we’ve already re-done our cabinets. Is there something we can put over the existing countertop instead of removing it?

Mary, Wenatchee WA

Answer

Formica is the brand-name of a material known generically as plastic laminate. Plastic laminate countertops are exceedingly popular and relatively inexpensive to replace compared to just about everything else on the market. If you want a new plastic laminate surface you can simply reface the top. However, the truth is that it is just as cheap to replace plastic laminate as it is to reface it. If you like you could cover the existing counter with some kind of tile, but this would be more costly. To tile the existing surface you must first remove the sink and any other adjacent appliances. Next, you’ll have to cut off the rounded nosing and the backsplash. Once this is accomplished you can recover the surface and back wall with just about anything your heart desires. By the way, granite countertops, which are popular but expensive, can be easily imitated with the new granite-looking plastic laminates.

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