How to Lay a Formica Countertop

What You'll Need
Circular Saw with thin blade
Formica Countertop
Sandpaper or Belt Sander
Strong formica adhesive glue
Tape Measure
Wood clamps
Protective gloves and goggles

A formica countertop is relatively simple and easy to install and are an inexepnsive way of revitalizing your kitchen and replacing damaged work surfaces. This step-by-step guide will show you how your can lay new formica counters quickly, safely and easily.

Step 1 - Remove Your Old Countertop

First you should remove your old countertop (if there is one) with a circular saw in small sections. When you are removing your old formica countertop, you will have to beware of any plumbing or other installments that are coming through the countertop. You will probably find that you require a hammer and chisel to remove any old glue.

Step 2 - Cutting Your New Counter

You may have purchased your countertop already cut to your specifications, however if you haven't you will need to cut the formica to the required size. First mark out the measurements on the reverse side of the formica using pencil (the top side of the formica will not be easy to draw on). Use the tape measure to accurately measure the formica. Make sure you take into account an overhang of around 1 inch at the edges of the counter. When you are cutting the counters, you should cut them in sections dependant on the layout of your kitchen. This will make them much easier to install.

Wearing protective goggles and gloves, use the circular saw to cut straight sections of the formica countertop to size. Make sure you have adjusted the blade enough so that it is able to cut through the thickest part of the formica. You will then need to cut any curved sections of the formica to shape using a jigsaw.

Step 3 - Sanding the Edges of the Countertop

You will then need to sand down the edges of your countertop to make sure that it is even and there are no rough surfaces. Make sure when you do this, that the sander is held facing downwards. This way you won't accidentally remove any laminate surface that is covering your formica countertop.

Step 4 - Laying Your Formica Countertop

You will now need to lay each section of your formica countertop separately. Use strong adhesive glue on each section to attach it to the surface underneath. If you get any glue on the formica itself, wipe it off immediately as it can be very difficult to remove. Once you have the countertop placed exactly how you want it, clamp it into place using your wood clamps. Make sure you leave enough room to replace the sink or plumbing features.

Step 5 - Setting the Countertop

You will now need to leave your countertop to set for at least 24 hours before removing the wood clamps. Finally use a sanding belt or sandpaper to sand down the edges of the countertop where they need it. You many then wish to consider whether you need to apply any decorative edging or laminate.