How To Clean Laminate Countertops
While laminate counters may be less popular than granite countertops these days, you’ll still find them in a lot of homes and apartments. Many homeowners still opt for this countertop material because, as ConsumerReports notes, laminate is affordable and just as sturdy as many more expensive countertops.
However, to see the best return on your countertop investment, you need to know how to clean laminate countertops so that your surfaces hold up for years to come. Let’s take a look at some of the best ways to clean this material, including how to clean laminate countertops on a daily basis.
First, What is Laminate?Laminate is a composite material comprised of layers of paper and resin. Interestingly, some layers are made of the same paper that grocery bags are made from. These layers are pressed together while they’re cooked. The combination of heat and pressure results in the layers chemically bonding to create one sheet of laminate.
After the laminate has been created, it’s cut down to size and glued to plywood. And that’s how laminate countertops are made.
How to Clean Laminate CountertopsAs with most housekeeping tasks, the key to keeping your laminate countertops clean is the frequency with which you wipe them down. However, when you clean a surface regularly, you should use milder materials. Doing so results in less wear and tear, which means your counters last longer.
To clean laminate countertops on a daily basis, all you need is dishwashing liquid, warm water and a microfiber cloth. Apply a mixture of dish soap and water to your counters using the cloth. As you wipe the counter, rinse your cloth in clean water. That way you’re actually cleaning, not just spreading dingy suds around. Afterwards, you can let the counter air dry or you can wipe away any remaining moisture with a fresh microfiber cloth.
If your countertops are stained, you can take care of those with baking soda and water. Simply combine a tablespoon of baking soda with a couple of tablespoons of water and mix those together to form a paste. Spread the paste over the stain and let it sit for about five minutes. Afterwards, wipe your countertops down with a damp microfiber cloth. Don’t scrub, or you could damage the surface. If the stain still isn’t gone, you’ll need to check the manufacturer’s instructions to see what stain removal products they recommend. Additionally, you’ll want to spot check the baking soda mixture on a small out-of-the-way section of your counter before applying it to larger areas.
Keep Your Laminate Countertop Looking GoodAs we’ve mentioned, one of laminate’s best features is that it’s affordable. To get your money’s worth out of your counters, you need to do more than know how to clean laminate countertops. You need to treat them right. Here’s a list of laminate do’s and don’ts:
- Use cutting boards or a butcher’s block when using knives.
- Put down placemats and trivets to protect laminate from heat.
- Know your manufacturer’s recommendations for cleaning products and materials.
- Clean with powdered cleaners, scouring pads, steel wool or scrub brushes.
- Use knives, meat tenderizers or similar kitchen utensils on your countertop.
- Wash laminate countertops with bleach, as it can discolor the surface.