When you decide to follow your dream of a perfect kitchen by replacing countertops; you need to choose the color, material and style that you want your kitchen to look like when it’s done. Once you know what look you’re after, it’s time to roll up your sleeves and get down to it.
Follow these Steps
• The first thing you really need to do is to protect any surfaces you want to keep the way they are. Put dust sheets over floors and any surrounding areas.
• Before you start removing the countertops you need to remove any existing electrics. Any connections have to be turned off using the breakers first. Then you can use the caps that are on the end of the wire to turn them back on when you need them.
• Please always remember to wear safety glasses whenever you’re doing projects such as these.
• Then take a masonry saw that’s dry and score the deck and also the backsplash; this will hopefully make any tiles and any mortar coming out in small pieces.
• For the deck of the existing countertop; use a hammer and a pry to dislodge any trim that is there.
• Loosen the backsplash with a pry bar in areas that have a solid background to remove the risk of causing unnecessary repairs.
• Once the backsplash has gone you can then proceed to cleaning up any debris that is left around as the area needs to be clean to install the new countertop.
• Depending on your measurement of the countertops, cut your base from plywood material you have picked; to the right measurements that you have made. Install and fix these to the tops. Then cut dots and dashes into the plywood to reduce the chance of warping at a later date.
• Then cut a hole for the sink leaving enough from for the trim to go around.
• Then you need to fix and secure roofing felt on the top of the plywood, place it everywhere, including the backsplash, the deck and any wood that is exposed.
• Then after this is fixed’; you also need to add metal reinforced wire over the top of the felt. The wire is to be put above the decks and then stapled into place.
• Install the sink next by imbedding it in mortar or just put it on the top of the wires you have just installed.
• Then apply all the mortar along all the surfaces smooth and evenly.
• Then lay out all the tiles and install them exactly how you want them to be. Cut them to the right size and use diagrams if necessary to help you remember where all the tiles are going to be. Use spacers if needed to allow space for grouting in between each tile.
• Leave the tiles to cure before starting any grouting, overnight is probably best. Then you can start grouting the tiles. Use as directed by the manufacturer.
• Then rub the grouting with a grouting sponge in a circle motion to make it smooth and rub off any excess.
• Remember that you will need to leave a 90 degree angle at the joint of the sink when applying the sealant; you should never use grouting when you’re finishing off these areas.
Photo by Allen Chu, Creative Commons Attribution