How I Stained & Sealed My Butcher Block Countertops
Waterlox Original Sealer; And now for how to stain and seal butcher block counters or rather, how not to The very first thing I did was sand the butcher block down to bare wood using a pad sander, coarse grit sandpaper, and a dust extractor. Jun 11, · Turn on the Shop Vac, then turn on the sander and sand away. The Shop Vac will catch most of the dust. After everything was sanded down, and the dust was wiped away, I put a coat of Wood Conditioner on the butcher block according to the instructions on the can. I .
You can stain butcher block countertops using wood stain with butche agents, how to make a moving image in html water and alcohol, or with wood stain with finishing agents, like lacquer or polyurethane. For a longer wearing surface, stains with finishing agents are best, as they form a coating on top of the staain.
Here's a guide to choosing the right stain and applying a professional looking finish. Stains with suspension agents are based with water, alcohol or petroleum distillate. These stains are thinner in consistency, so they soak into the wood. Mineral based stains are non-drying. Choose an alcohol-based stain or a sealer with drying oils. Lacquer, polyurethane and varnish coat the wood rather than soak into it.
These stains are easier to remove and much slower drying following application. For a what do shingles do to you with plenty of activity, choose a stain with a finishing agent.
Avoid stains with finishing agents that sea, water based. Although these are water resistant, they are not recommended for surfaces that regularly become wet, counterttops your butcher block countertop will.
Suspension Agents Stains with suspension agents are based with water, alcohol or petroleum distillate. Related Posts Advice on Staining.
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Kitchen Cabinets: Staining Options.
You can stain butcher block countertops using wood stain with suspension agents, like water and alcohol, or with wood stain with finishing agents, like lacquer or polyurethane. For a longer wearing surface, stains with finishing agents are best, as they form a coating on top of the wood.
I do NOT recommend using water-based polyurethane on butcherblock countertops…especially if your butcherblock is on your main countertops where your sink is located. Click here to see how I sealed my Ikea Numerar butcherblock countertops for the fourth…and final…time. I wish I had used this method from the very beginning. Yep, this is my third time to stain and seal these things. I just love the way they look, the way they warm up the space, and the fact that they CAN be sanded and re-stained.
In one weekend, I can change the color of my countertops…and the look of my kitchen…and spend relatively little money. What other countertop material can you do that with? The last two times I did my countertops, I used Minwax stain and sealed them with Waterlox. Both times, my countertops turned out yellowish orange, and seemed to get even more yellowish orange over time.
Not pretty. So this time, I decided to try completely different products. I started by sanding the current finish off of the countertops with my orbital sander. I started with grit sandpaper just to make the job a bit faster, and then ended with grit sandpaper to leave a smooth finish. When using an orbital sander inside, remove the dust bag attachment, and place the hose of your Shop Vac over the spout thingamajig that the dust bag attachment usually attaches to.
Turn on the Shop Vac, then turn on the sander and sand away. The Shop Vac will catch most of the dust. After everything was sanded down, and the dust was wiped away, I put a coat of Wood Conditioner on the butcher block according to the instructions on the can.
I used Minwax, and found it at Home Depot. This was my first time to use wood conditioner, and I really did notice a difference. The stain seemed to go on much more evenly, and the grain blended in more with the rest of the wood when the stain was applied, which was definitely a welcome sight. Next it was time for the stain. I used Rust-Oleum stain in Early American.
It took five coats to get the rich, dark color that I wanted. I just made sure that each coat was completely dry before adding another one.
This is the decision that I really struggled with the most…how to seal the butcher block countertops. The first time I finished the countertops, I was very concerned about using a product that is food safe. But after two tries with Waterlox, and after living with my countertops for 2. I simply do not ever put food on my countertops. I decided that I wanted durability first and foremost, and a close second was that I wanted something that would not turn yellow.
I narrowed down my options to Rust-Oleum spar varnish and Rust-Oleum polyurethane in a matte finish. Both of these products are water-based. Water-based products definitely have their advantages, lack of noxious smell and quick drying times being two of the big ones. I was leaning towards spar varnish. I figured if it was tough enough to be used on things that sit outside in the weather, then it was tough enough for my kitchen countertops.
But after a quick call to the Rust-Oleum customer service number, I realized that I was about to make the wrong decision. I wish I could remember, but suffice it to say that he made a very convincing argument. Water-based polyurethane is really quite different from oil-based polyurethane. It always makes me a bit nervous in the beginning. But somehow, it always dries without streaks, and completely clear.
And let me tell you, that matte finish is simply gorgeous. However, I did notice that after the first two coats, it seemed a bit rough in places. So instead of taking a chance in messing up my newly stained and sealed countertops with sandpaper, I decided to use brown paper like the brown shipping paper or a brown paper bag to sand the surface.
It worked amazingly well, and gave the countertop a very smooth finish. The finished countertops look just like I hoped they would look…dark, rich, not glossy at all, and not yellow. Now I know that making a decision on how to stain and seal butcher block countertops can be quite stressful.
I remember before I purchased mine, I spent hours and hours doing research online, trying to figure out what products were the best, which ones were food safe, which stains could be used, etc. All that to say this…if you have any questions about it, please feel free to ask. Your countertop looks gorgeous Kristi! Thanks for the great tip about using brown paper for delicate sanding.
The roughness of brown paper is about the equivalent of a very super fine sandpaper think: grit. The countertop looks amazing! So weird … I just scheduled a post for tomorrow featuring you, your blog and your chrysanthemum mirror. I then checked my email and there was your post. Crazy timing. I love your blog — you are crazy talented. Thanks for all the inspiration! Missi, you just made my day! Thanks so much for such a sweet compliment.
This post is awesome! That trick of attaching the sander to the shop vac. I love the way yours turned out. I am pinning this post, and I think I might actually do the exact same thing. I use the Wood Conditioner every time I stain, and I love the way the stain takes to the wood.
Your countertops look perfect. Thanks for all the tips and the steps! My smart hubby taught me that one. I have sanding mess everywhere. I have come up with all kinds of barriers to keep it to a minimum, but sanding inside my home is just the biggest headache. Two years ago I tried to refinish my butcher block countertops, and the dust covered every surface in the first floor of my home, for months! I am so excited about this tip, I might just do this next week!
Thanks again. I have to say your butcher block would be a strong contender for a backup plan!! Ooohhhh, recycled glass countertops! One of my favorites as well. If you ever get those, you MUST send me a picture!! I too love wood conditioner…. Between coats I use the black sandpaper and after dusting, I dust with a tack cloth. Never thought beyond that. The steps you followed and tips you gave can be applied to sanding, staining, and sealing pretty much anything wood.
I have noticed that, Krista. According to the specifications on the can, it takes a full seven days to completely cure. I got curious, so I actually called Rust-Oleum and asked about that. Thank you so much! What are your thoughts on using mineral oil? As in what the heck do i do with it? This is soooooooo helpful!! Should they be cut and installed before beginning the staining and sealing process? You should have your cuts made before staining so that the final color will be uniform.
If you stain first then cut, the fresh cuts will require stain causing a possible line where the new stain covers the previous stain. This is awesome. I am looking online for ideas for counter tops on a budget and was looking at the Ikea tops. I was just looking for ideas to piece together in my feeble design brain, but you gave me the paint-by-numbers with background experience for what to avoid. Thanks, Kristi! I sure do appreciate when people keep web logs of their home projects and really do appreciate this one.
Thanks for helping this stranger in a time-crunch out. Anyway, thanks! So glad you found it helpful! Even after almost six weeks, the water-based poly still turns milky white when water gets on it and sits there for a few minutes. Duly noted.