Care and Maintenance: Laminated Bench Tops
The laminate surface on bench tops is made from a stain-resistant melamine based resin and laminate surfaced products are classed as being hard wearing, but like any material, it can be damaged if used without some care and maintenance.
The toughness and high impermeability of this surface means that laminated bench tops should require no more than wiping with a soft cloth, dampened with plain water or a household detergent mix to remove all common household spills. Always ensure that you refer to the recommendations provided by the cleaning product manufacturer before use.
While laminate brands vary, you should refer to the warranty and care documentation for your particular brand, however below are some general guidelines to cleaning them.
The following information will aid in assisting you to maintain the surface of your laminate products with minimum time and effort:
- Avoid scourers and abrasives as they will damage the surface.
- Do not place hot objects, electrical appliances or pots straight from the oven or cooker onto your laminated bench top.
- Do not cut on the laminate bench top.
- Keep waxes and polishes well away as they dull the natural shine.
- Do not use strongly acidic, alkaline cleaners or bleach for normal cleaning as these might etch the surface.
TIP: Always use a cutting board and heat pad
- A wiping over with a clean soft damp cloth should be sufficient to keep all decorative surfaces clean and remove spills and greasy spots, using a circular cleaning motion - Taking care not to rub too hard.
- Rub with a clean dry cloth to bring back brightness.
- Occasionally clean with mild dishwashing detergent.
To remove heavy build-up of dirt use cleaners such as Mr Muscle, Windex or Ajax Spray n Wipe spray cleaners.
NOTE: Never use Pine-O'Clean or any products listed below
- Streaky marks may sometimes show on dark colours after cleaning. An all-purpose cleaner such as Windex spray cleaner or Ajax Spray n Wipe usually removes them.
- Using a mild dishwashing detergent with water will remove greasy marks. Dab, wait and wipe away then finish with an all-purpose cleaner such as Windex spray cleaner or Ajax Spray n Wipe. Note: With gloss surfaces, never use abrasive cleaners – even those in liquid form – as they will mark the surface and being a gloss surface, will highlight even small scratches under particular light.
- Spills of any nature should be wiped up as soon as they occur - With some accidental spills, prompt action is essential.
- Wipe off beetroot, tea, grape and berry juices, red wine, first aid preparations, concentrated bleach, oven cleaners, dishwasher detergents, artificial dyes, hair colouring and solvent based pen ink immediately.
- Specialty glues such as Super Glue must also be removed straight away with acetone (nail polish remover).
- Laminate surfaces are resistant to most household products, but not absolutely stain-proof.
- Laminates are unaffected by normal household reagents.
- If the stain won’t budge with Extra Strength Windex, try methylated spirits or dab the stain with a diluted bleach mixture (1 part bleach to 8 parts water); leave for 3 minutes then wash off with water and dry. Finish off with Extra Strength Windex. Only as a last resort if a stain persists try 2 or 3 rubs with a crème cleanser or white toothpaste, wash and dry. Please note that bleach or these abrasive cleaners may irreversibly damage the laminate surface.
- Laminate surfaces will withstand normal wear and tear, but can be damaged by scratching or cutting with utensils, knives and unglazed pottery. Darker colours will show scratches more readily than lighter colours.
- In general, dark colours and high gloss surfaces require more care and maintenance than lighter colours or lower gloss colours.
- To minimise scratching, always place and lift objects from the surface – never drag or slide them across the surface.
- A cutting board or chopping board should always be used.
- Severe cuts can be repaired with repairers like Laminex Colorfill (which is a specially formulated colour matched kit for sealing joins and repairing damaged decorative surfaces), however this will never be a good or as strong as the original laminate, but can be used as a last resort.
To ensure that your Warranty will not be void, DO NOT use any of the following on your laminated bench tops:
- Commercial Cleaning Products
- Abrasive Cleaners
- Scouring Pads
- Abrasive Papers
- Turpentine (Turps)
- Pine OClean
- Strongly Acidic, Alkaline cleaners or Bleach,
- Any other cleaning agents containing Organic Solvents or the above mentioned products.
More information needed?
- For laminate bench top Tips and Design Advice, click here.
- For laminate bench top 'fact sheet 101', click here.
- For more technical information about Laminate, click here.
We hope that this information has been helpful for you.
If you need further help or more information on this topic please:
From all the team at OzFlatPacks