Asked on Nov 17, 2013

Need a CHEAP fix for UGLY laminate counter tops.....

Tami Richardson
by Tami Richardson
+51
Answered
I live in a rental mobile home and am allowed to do improvements (at my cost of course). we have lived here for almost 4 years and I am at6 a point where I HATE walking into the kitchen, the countertop is old and stained, and the cabinets are press wood with some kind of paper covering, that is now peeling... any thoughts on SUPER CHEAP but effective fixes???? if I owned this place the kitchen would be gutted!
q need a cheap fix for ugly laminate counter tops, countertops, home decor, kitchen design
q need a cheap fix for ugly laminate counter tops, countertops, home decor, kitchen design
  22 answers
  • Z Z on Nov 17, 2013
    There's always paint. Is that something you'd be interested in doing? It's time consuming, but probably the least expensive fix for the cabinets, though there's also craft paper counters you can find about that here: http://www.hometalk.com/diy/kitchen-dining/kitchen-dining-furniture/refinished-counter-tops-with-paper-1540929 You have an adorable son.

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    • Z Z on Nov 18, 2013
      @Tami, you are very welcome.I love the craft paper technique too. I never would have thought to do it on a counter had I not seen it on Hometalk.

  • Pamela Jordan Pamela Jordan on Nov 18, 2013
    I HAD THOSE SAME COUNTER TOPS IN MY DOUBLEWIDE BEFORE WE BUILT OUR NEW HOUSE, I LOVED THEM! THEY WERE EASY TO CLEAN, JUST SOAK A SPONGE IN BLEACH & LAY IT ON THE STAIN FOR A FEW MINUTES OR IF IT NEEDED MORE YOU COULD SCRUB WITH A PASTE OF BAKING SODA & WATER (THEY LOOKED GREAT THE 7 YRS WE LIVED THERE). NOW I HAVE TUMBLED TILE COUNTER TOPS (THEY LOOKED GOOD IN THE STORE) BUT THEY WERE NOT SEALED WELL SO THEY ARE DISCOLORED & THE DIVITS IN THEM MAKE IT HARD TO KEEP CLEAN. I ASKED FOR LAMINATE COUNTER TOPS BUT WAS TALKED OUT OF IT, WISH I HAD MY OLD COUNTER TOPS BACK!

  • Cindy Cindy on Nov 18, 2013
    Cheapest fix would be to paint. I painted our countertops Amazing what you can do with paint. Very inexpensive and takes just a few days.

    • Tami Richardson Tami Richardson on Nov 18, 2013
      @Cindy how has the paint held up on your counters?? I don't even know what color I would do... I eventually want to paint the walls a light green (but plan on leaving the red wall) UGH I HATE trying to decide! LOL

  • Painting is the least expensive. There are kits available at home improvement centers/departments. And many painting alternative how-to instructions on internet videos that explain the process and the products are much less than the kits. Maybe searching the net before deciding on an idea would be best. I have granite look Formica counter tops that I clear coated to make them appear real granite by watching a how to. It took a few days, but it was worth it.

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    • @Tami Richardson Here is a photo of my poly coated Formica counter top.

  • Tami Richardson Tami Richardson on Nov 18, 2013
    what about the cabinets? I was thinkin of painting them, but they are not real wood they seem to have like a wood grain paper on them.....

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    • U can most definately paint them. I did in my mobile home. I lightly sanded them and i kiltzed them then painted them. And they look awesome

  • Pamela Jordan Pamela Jordan on Nov 19, 2013
    I HAVE USED CONTACT PAPER TO COVER MY MOMS COUNTER TOPS, BUT I KNOW THERE IS A PAINT TREATMENT FOR COUNTERTOPS! I AM THINKING RUSTOLEUM HAS ONE, YOU MIGHT CHECK AT LOWES OR HOME DEPOT, I'M SURE THEY WOULD HAVE IT! GOOD LUCK, I HOPE THAT HELPS

  • Peggie Wilson Peggie Wilson on Nov 19, 2013
    You could use Rust-Oleum Transformations Large Desert Sand Countertop Kit (Covers 50 sq. ft.) $247 -Home Depot $148 for a small kitchen. It comes in other colors. There are other companies that sell the same type of thing. I would buy a good quality paint, though. Sand the counter really well. Couple coats of primer. then a couple coats of the paint, and follow it up with three coats of polyurethane. Lots of work, but minimal cost.

  • Lori Behlen Lori Behlen on Nov 19, 2013
    I painted some years ago using paint I already had. Sanded first, then a coat of primer followed by a tan base coat. I did a faux stone effect using tans, browns, gray, and black and used crumpled plastic bags as my "brush". Some of the paint was craft acrylic, some latex--whatever I had. Once I was happy with the look, I let it dry a couple of days and then finished with several coats of poly. I lived there a couple of years and it still looked fine when I left.

  • Karen Adams Karen Adams on Nov 19, 2013
    If you need to go even cheaper than painting you can use the sticky stuff you buy to line the inside of your cabinets and just roll it out on the counter tops. I have been in a situation like yours and have done this. They come in such a wide variety of styles and colors too! It lasted for quite awhile.,

  • Peggie Wilson Peggie Wilson on Nov 19, 2013
    How timely! This was a few posts down from your's on my hometalk feed: http://bucketsofburlap.blogspot.com/2013/03/painted-countertops.html. She painted butcher block, however with a good couple coats of primer laminate is totally paintable. Here's an article on how to paint laminate countertops using oil-based paint: http://www.diylife.com/2010/01/27/how-to-paint-a-laminate-countertop/.

  • Shari Shari on Nov 19, 2013
    Rustoleum Countertop Transformations was mentioned above. You may want to check this out: http://southernhospitalityblog.com/rustoleum-countertop-transformation-kit/

  • Raya Deych Raya Deych on Nov 19, 2013
    One suggestion is the concept from the Restaurant in Jupiter Florida, "Left Overs" using PVC Back Splash for the Bar Counter Top Covered with Clear Coat, Polyurethane" , The PVC Back Splash is available from www.ceilingtilesbyus.com.

  • Cindy Cindy on Nov 19, 2013
    Hi Tami I first painted our counters about three years ago. I went to Lowes and looked around at their counters to see what I liked then brought home several little sample cards You could also check out the decor sites like H ouzz, HGtV to see what appeals to you, held up pretty good for a couple of years made the mistake of putting hot plates and pans on it of course that caused chipping and marks I just repainted a couple of weeks ago and plan on being more careful this time. It is definitely a easy fix. I think it looks very nice. I first did a light sanding then primed with Kilz let it dry a day and then Painted the entire counter with black gloss paint let that dry and then sponge painted with brown and gold metallic paint after letting that dry for a couple of days I applied a couple of coats of polycrylic gloss

  • Cindy Cindy on Nov 19, 2013
    after looking at the sample cards you will know what colors you need to use

  • Kimberly Gatzey Kimberly Gatzey on Nov 19, 2013
    I have lived in many mobile homes and found that there are lots of inexpensive ways to update a rental. I once got some leftover linoleum flooring, a remnant from the local flooring store, and glued with cheap old Elmers glue to recover my counters and create a backsplash with it. It held up great, except for one little scratch I made when I didn't use a cutting board. It cleans very easily, doesn't stain and water beads up instead of penetrating. This also works great for those rentals that have small, unsmooth wall spaces. The linoleum smooths out the wall, and it can then be painted or papered if wanted. Mobile Homes are relatively inexpensive to remodel cosmetically. I once even used an old, smooth-surfaced door as a breakfast counter, using painted 2X4's cut for legs. Also, Contact paper has many uses in a mobile home. Good luck and have fun with it! We'd love to see your before and after pics! ps...I painted my cabinet doors by first priming them, then I used metallic silver in random brush strokes to make them look as if they are stainless steel. They will have a deeper shine if you tint the primer black first.

  • Mak Meyers Mak Meyers on Nov 19, 2013
    Try the paper treatment that looks like leather.

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    • Judy Parkey Judy Parkey on Feb 13, 2014
      @Meem Kaplan I have some other projects to get done first and backed out on doing this right away. Then...my daughter sends me the BEST idea http://prettylilposies.blogspot.com/2010/11/250-kitchen-makeover-with-20-granite.html

  • Cynthia E Cynthia E on Nov 19, 2013
    Tami I ran across this product in my search for appliance film covers (was wanting copper not stainless steel :) ) from the research have done it looks very durable and prices are comparable to painting your own with a kit. If I needed to update my counters right now I would go with this. http://www.instant-granite.com/ ----- Instant Granite film is made of Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) and is 2 mil in thickness. It has a powerful adhesive coating on it's underside and is rolled with a 4 mil backing. The backing has grid marks allowing for accurate cutting. The surface of the film is scratch resistent and cleans with any multipurpose surface cleaner such as Windex. It's heat tollerant to 122°F and doesn't show fingerprints.Our film installs onto any smooth surface. The adhesive sets after 24 hours, but can easily be removed using heat (i.e. heat gun or common hair blow drier).

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    • Cynthia E Cynthia E on Nov 19, 2013
      @Tami Richardson Oh I know feeling completely -- on a fixed income here so we have to save up and buy things a little at a time then when have everything start projects :) I would sand all the paper off then before painting so you don't see areas where paper is gone. You can make your own chalkboard paint (plenty of recipes on pinterest) from any color paint , but I would go with black or a deep charcoal gray , you could paint upper or lower cabinet inserts with it (play area for son) and grocery list for you.. other options to cutting out door inserts --use wallpaper, or the faux tin celiing tiles, or put on wood appliques or even wood trim to cabinets , can also take a stencil (or make one from cardboard -- best for thickness) put on center of panels and fill in open areas with drywall plaster in stead of paint let dry then paint over -- a little ant. glaze over design put on wipe off so just in crevices and done. -- Any one of these or even just painting will give you a whole new look on your kitchen it will become your favorite room.. And keep these before shots, then take after pics. (keep all receipts ) show to landlord, who knows maybe they will deduct cost out of your rent since you are improving their property .

  • Patricia Patricia on Feb 08, 2014
    How do i do this and what do i need

  • Linda Weeks Linda Weeks on Feb 08, 2014
    http://www.instant-granite.com/Product-Details.html check it out! I'm thinking about trying this vinyl stuff, sounds pretty easy too - but really cheap, so far as home improvements go!

  • Peggy Peggy on Feb 09, 2014
    It sounds like you have therma-foil cabinets. I would not paint the cabinets because even if you take the time to glue the loose thermafoil down it will just peal again. I did see a post where the thermafoil was removed and the cabinets painted. Please do lots of research before you decide how to proceed.

    • Judy Parkey Judy Parkey on Feb 09, 2014
      @Mak Meyers LOVE THIS IDEA! It eliminates the staining and may get me BACK into my kitchen a few days earlier!!! I'm doing this!

  • Meem Kaplan Meem Kaplan on Feb 13, 2014
    @Mak MeyersWhat a great link!!!! Oh yeah, that one is do-able!