How to Repair a Splitting Butcher Block Island Top

Having a butcher block island in your kitchen is a great way to use your space effectively. An island can provide you with additional room to prepare your food and an additional tabletop area for other uses as well. A butcher block island can either be ordered or you can build one yourself. You should take care of your block, some of the most common damage to the block includes cracks, scratches and splitting. Here are some instructions on how to repair a splitting butcher block island top.

Tools and Materials Needed:

  • Wood filler compound
  • Putty knife
  • Rags
  • Tack cloth
  • Sponge
  • Sandpaper
  • Butcher block oil
  • Dishwashing liquid
  • Warm water

Step 1 - Cleaning the Butcher Block Top

Start off by cleaning the butcher block's top properly. Any dirt and other residues should be removed. You will need to apply a mixture of hot water and dish washing liquid to the surface of the butcher block. Then, you will need to scrub it well with a sponge or cloth. Rinse it thoroughly with clear water and allow to dry well before you proceed.

Step 2 - Sanding the Split Area

Once the wood has been cleaned and dried you can check the condition of the wood. Use a fine grit sandpaper to lightly sand the area that shows the damage. There may be some rough edges that you will have to remove. When you sand the special areas, be sure to use a little more pressure and work to keep the entire surface level and consistent. Also, when you sand, always remember to sand along the wood's grain. Then, wipe the area with a damp rag to remove dust and any other residue caused by the sanding. A tack cloth will help to remove the dust more effectively.

Step 3 - Filling the Split Area

Now you can start filling up the split area with wood filler. You can apply it with your finger or with a putty knife. Try to fill the gap as best as you can. Then, smooth the filler so there are no bubbles. Also, fill the area so it is consistent with the rest of the butcher block's top.

Once you have allowed enough time for the wood filler compound to dry, use the sandpaper to sand the area lightly. Smooth out the area so that it is uniform with the patched up part. Then use a damp cloth to wipe and remove the dust particles.

Step 4 - Finishing Up

Finally, apply butcher block oil with a soft rag. Use the rag to wipe the area. This should provide a better finish and a protective layer. You can also use beeswax to finish the look of the butcher block.

If your block will be used for food, you can also apply a coating of food-safe clear lacquer finish to the area. It is best to apply several coats in order to get the best results. Make sure that you allow enough time for the first coat to set before you apply a subsequent coat.