Finishing Over Laminate

Finishers discuss the application of pigmented topcoats to existing laminate countertops. June 18, 2013

Looks like painting over laminate countertops is getting to be a big thing. Rustoleum and some other brands have got the kits to do it. I've also been checking out some guys on the web that do concrete tops and overlay them with epoxy. I do laminate tops and I have a guy that does granite and another that does solid surface. I've had this thought but don't know how well it would work. Use MDF plumbcore to build a top and paint it and do some art work to make it look like granite or marble or whatever and then do the epoxy finish. Just wondering if any of you have ever tried this what kind of paint you used?

Forum Responses
(Finishing Forum)
From contributor J:
Haven't tried it, but my feeling is laminate tops are so cheap why would anyone want to spend time or money trying to paint them to look like something else? I can't imagine they're saving much money having someone do all that work versus just replacing them?

From contributor R:
Our polished out ultra high gloss finishes are done right over a laminate. Poly Primer meant for autos is used as a base coat and pigmented CV and clear CV are put on top.

From contributor A:
I would look into Granicrete.

From contributor T:
I have done a bunch of it. It is very durable. I use aliphatics and do not like epoxies much due to the yellowing. Call Midwest Industrial Chemicals down in Florida and speak to Ed or Edward. Great guys and great products.

From the original questioner:
Thanks for the responses. I'm not interested in painting over laminate countertops - it would be better to just replace them as mentioned. My thought was painting the MDF and doing a durable finish. I am interested in the finish you guys are using. Can you tell me a little more about them and how durable it is as far as wear and tear? Also, how food safe it would be if someone used it as a cutting board?

From contributor T:
I use the aliphatic on diesel mechanics floors, wood night club floors, tubs and countertops. I would leave the laminate on there and go from there. You will get a heavy texture if you go over MDF. This can be sanded out , but you will have less sanding if you just go over the laminate. Also, you will need to be pretty good with sanding and you will also need a high speed polisher and the appropriate polishes.

As far as using it as a cutting board... Any coating you put on there will cut. I just did a repair of this exact thing today.

As far as the safety of the productů This is some toxic stuff for sure. I asked the same question just to be safe and got the response that I thought I would. Once it is cured it is fine. Another nice thing about this is it can be maintained with a good cleaning car polish. Sanding and blending is also not too bad. Let me know if you need any more help, but I have never seen this stuff fail.