A Homeowner’s Guide to Reclaimed Wood Countertops
Reclaimed wood countertops help you create organic countertops. The natural patina of the aged wood, along with the natural imperfections, creates character and warmth in your home. In addition to the beauty and warmth created, reclaimed wood is also great for the environment. Rather than the wood found in residential and commercial buildings, barns, and warehouses ending up in the landfill, this gorgeous wood can become part of your home.
Countertop specialists carefully select each individual piece of wood based on appearance and quality. The wood chosen should be from the same house, barn, or commercial building to ensure consistent appearance and quality. After each piece of wood is selected, it will be joined together, sanded (if needed), stained, and sealed.
Wood countertops have been used in kitchens for hundreds of years because of their function, warmth, and beauty. The wood countertops’ quality is determined by the species of the wood, the stain chosen, the grain, and more, which is why you need a countertop specialist that understands how to select quality heirloom wood.
Before the reclaimed wood countertop is created, the countertop specialist will need to take measurements of your space and create a countertop template. This template will be used to create your reclaimed wood countertops. Each individual piece of wood will be joined together, sanded and stained. After the entire stretch of countertop is built, the countertop specialist will make any cutouts needed. Finally, the countertop will be sealed to help protect against staining.
After the countertop is manufactured, it will be delivered to your home and installed on your cabinetry. Reclaimed wood countertops will increase the value and function of your home. Whether reclaimed wood countertops are installed in your kitchen or your bathroom, you will love them for many years to come.
Reclaimed wood countertops are often found in historic homes with country or rustic kitchens; however, reclaimed wood can also be found in contemporary kitchens. The distressed look of the reclaimed wood countertop adds history to your home. Several types of wood can be used in reclaimed wood countertops, including:
The finish chosen for your reclaimed wood countertop should be based on the location of the countertop, how the countertop will be used, and the overall look you want for your countertops. A glossier finish will be more durable; however, if you want a wood countertop that looks more natural, you will need a more matte finish, which will not be as durable.
Homeowners around the world are wanting to go back to a time when food and family were the cornerstones of a home, which is why they are embracing reclaimed wood countertops. Reclaimed wood countertops bring a warm aesthetic into the home. Many individuals think that reclaimed wood is only used in rustic kitchens; however, when combined with stainless steel and glass, reclaimed wood countertops can create a dreamy modern kitchen.
Reclaimed wood countertops are not for everyone. Just like any other type of countertop material, they come with a list of pros and cons that should be considered.
Caring for reclaimed wood countertops is not difficult. First, you must minimize exposure to moisture and oils. If a spill occurs, clean it up immediately using an absorbent cloth. If oil splatters on your countertop or you accidentally spill oil on your countertop, cover the area with cornstarch and allow it to absorb the oil and prevent staining from occurring.
If your countertops are not sealed, you will need to oil them regularly. Oiling your countertops helps to prevent wear and tear. To oil your countertop, pour a liberal amount of oil on the countertop and allow it to soak in for thirty minutes. Then take a soft cloth and buff the countertop to increase durability and stain resistance.
If you need to scrub your countertops, always scrub with the grain using a nylon scrubber. A nylon scrubber will prevent scratches from occurring. If you rub across the grain, it can raise the grain.
If a stain occurs, you can try to remove it using lemon juice and salt. Cover the stain with salt and scrub using half of a lemon. The citric acid in the lemon will help to remove the stain, while the salt provides extra grit to scrub away a stain.
If you have a stain that cannot be removed using the method mentioned above or you have scratches or dents in your reclaimed wood countertop, you can gently sand the reclaimed wood countertop using a 120 grit sandpaper, followed by 180 grit sandpaper. When you are sanding your countertops, always sand with the grain of the wood. After you have sanded the countertop, reapply oil to the countertop.
Reclaimed wood needs to be sealed. Sealing prevents stains from occurring. Stains occur when liquids seep into the pores of the wood. Using a sealer helps to seal up the pores of the wood and slow down how quickly liquids are absorbed into the countertop.
In addition to reducing the risk of staining, sealing reclaimed wood countertops minimizes the risk of mold and bacteria from forming on the countertop. Finally, sealing your countertops prevents the wood from cracking or warping.
Sealing reclaimed wood countertops is not difficult. With just a few simple steps, you can adequately protect your countertops. The first step is to lightly sand your countertops to remove any stains or scratches. Once you have sanded your countertops, wipe them down using a tack cloth to remove all of the sawdust.
If you are oiling you are sealing your countertops with oil, apply a liberal amount of oil to the countertop and allow it to soak into the wood for 30 minutes. Then, wipe excess oil up using an absorbent cloth. A penetrating oil not only protects against staining, but it also enhances the beauty of the reclaimed wood.
Typically, two coats of oil will provide the protection that your reclaimed wood countertops need. You should apply sealer at least two to three times per year or whenever you notice that the countertop is not repelling liquids.
If you decide to use a penetrating sealer like Waterlox, you will only need to reseal every five to eight years. To apply Waterlox, lightly sand your countertops to remove any stains and wipe down using a tack cloth. Then, using a 2-inch foam brush, apply a coat of Waterlox with the grain of the reclaimed wood countertop. Allow the Waterlox to dry for at least 12 hours.
Apply a second coat of Waterlox and allow it to dry for 12 hours. Then, lightly sand the countertop using 220 grit sandpaper and wipe using a tack cloth. Apply the third coat and allow it to dry overnight or at least 12 hours.
Sand the countertop with 320 grit sandpaper and follow by sanding with 400 grit sandpaper. Wipe the surface down with a tack cloth to remove all dust. Apply the last liberal coat of Waterlox using one long stroke the length of the countertop, following the grain of the wood. Allow the sealed countertop surface to dry for 20 minutes and go over the surface using a new, dry foam brush. Continue dry brushing every 10 minutes to remove any air bubbles or defects until the countertop becomes tacky.
Waterlox takes a full 60 days to cure. You will be able to use your countertops during the curing process; however, avoid setting appliances on the countertop, cutting on the countertop, or setting hot pots and pans on the countertop. When your countertops are not in use, remove all items from the countertop to prevent bubbles and dents from forming as the Waterlox cures.
The cost of reclaimed wood countertops varies based on the available reclaimed wood in the area, the species of wood chosen, and the size, thickness, and shape of your countertops. There are reclaimed common wood countertops average $65 per square foot. Conversely, reclaimed rare wood can cost $125 or more per square foot.
When shopping for reclaimed wood countertops, talk with your countertop specialist. When you tell the countertop specialist your allotted reclaimed wood countertop budget, the specialist will be able to show you the different options available that fall within your budget.
Reclaimed wood has a rich history that dates back several decades. When reclaimed wood is used to create countertops for kitchens and bathrooms, the results are amazing. Homeowners will be rewarded with a warm countertop with unique characteristics.
Reclaimed wood countertops are quieter and warmer than other types of countertop materials. Wood absorbs sound rather than amplifying sound. Furthermore, wood absorbs heat while natural stone countertops reflect heat.
Reclaimed wood countertops offer greater design flexibility. Reclaimed wood is joined together, which means your wood countertop can span large areas. Wood can also be cut in a variety of shapes. Do you want an arched bar? With reclaimed wood countertops, it is no problem!
Finally, reclaimed wood countertops are eco-friendly. These countertops use a renewable resource. Rather than ending up in a landfill, old wood harvested from homes, barns, and commercial properties is recycled and turned into reclaimed wood countertops.