Epoxy countertops are lightweight, durable, resistant to an astounding array of chemical compounds, and are so non-porous that bacteria can't find a place to settle in where your cleaning sponge can't reach. These facts can make them a wise choice for not only your home but also for many business types such as restaurants, bars, hotels and cafes, amongst others. However, as durable as it may be, your new epoxy countertop will require proper care to keep them in tip top shape and to maintain the very high luster they are so well known for.
Below we have listed the best practices in caring for your new epoxy countertops. In most cases, your epoxy countertop will have been sealed and protected beneath a layer of one of many various types of FDA food safe topcoats. Please speak with your coating specialist at Armortech Resurfacing regarding the proper care of the type of topcoat applied to your specific countertop.
- Never use abrasive materials to clean your epoxy countertop. This point can’t be emphasized strongly enough. To put it plainly, abrasive cleaners, tools, and scrub pads will dull and damage the epoxy surface. That may be great if your intent is to have a matte type finish, not so good if you desire the shine epoxy surfaces are so well known for. The best way to clean an epoxy countertop is to simple wipe the surface down when needed with a sponge, soft cloth, or chamois cloth and one of the following cleaners, soft soaps and liquid detergents such as Dawn, Joy, and Ivory, etc., Simple Green, Formula 409, Fantastic, Dow, Windex, Bon Ami, Scrub Free, and Mr. Clean.
DO NOT USE: Vinegar, Citrus Cleaners, Bleach, Ajax, Comet, abrasive scratch pads, harsh abrasives, steel wool, or undiluted ammonia.
Never use cleaning compounds with citrus or acid in them. Citrus cleaners and vinegar will break down the epoxy catalyst and must be avoided. The use of a steam cleaner is also not recommended. Steam cleaners can cause excessive heat shock which may cause blistering and subsequent adhesion failure.
- Wipe up spills immediately. It’s always better to be safe than sorry, so clean up those spills before they have a chance to dry or even stain the surface. You can use any soft cloth, towel, or rag and for extra gentle cleaning try using a chamois cloth.
- Use a mild soft soap for stubborn cleaning. This should be more than enough to get rid of any food, light dirt, or grime that finds its way onto your countertops without being so harsh as to wear down the surface in any way. If you are trying to save money or would prefer a more natural cleaning solution you can also use a clear ammonia and water mix (at 2-3 ounces of ammonia per gallon of warm water to wipe the surface down. Please note, do not allow the ammonia and water to stand on the epoxy surface for more than a minute or so before wiping off.
- Do not chop or cut directly on the counter. Use a cutting board instead to avoid scratching or scoring damage.
- Use mineral oil to restore original shine and luster. It might make some people to shutter to think of pouring oil onto your epoxy countertop, but it can actually be quite beneficial in hiding small surface scratches and restoring the original shine. To accomplish this simply pour a small amount of clear mineral oil (available at most Walmart’s or local pharmacies) on a soft polishing cloth or drizzle a narrow bead across the surface and lightly hand buff and polish to bring back the original luster and hide most minor surface scratches.
- Accidental Scratch or Scoring damage. Should the countertop surface become heavily scratched or scored by abrasive materials it may be necessary to take additional steps to repair. To accomplish this first clean the surface with an approved cleaning method listed above. Then apply an approved polish or glaze coat to the surface. Zep products work well with our epoxies and can be easily found at Lowes’, and Home Depot or online. Buckeye CastleGuard® is also an excellent wax type product that is most easily found online. When applied routinely these products will not only hide existing scratches, but will also protect the surface from future scratches. Repeated applications building up the thickness of the polish or glaze coat will provide improved scratch resistance. Deep scratches and or gouges that penetrate through the decorative epoxy layer will need professional repair and likely re-coating of the topcoat. Please contact the coating specialists at Armortech Resurfacing, Inc if this should occur.
Follow these simple steps and keep your epoxy countertops looking great for years to come.
Caring for your countertop will take a minimal amount of time, but it will need to be done on a regular basis to keep it shining for many years after the installation. If you have questions feel free to ask your floor coating specialist at Armortech Resurfacing, Inc. to make sure you know and use the right cleaning tools and supplies to clean your particular surface.