Worktop Finish FAQ's

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Can I use a worktop oil or varnish on a commercial bar top?

Commercial bar tops are subjected to extreme wear and tear. the only products that we can confidently recommend for these conditions are Sadolin PV67 Heavy Duty Varnish and Manns Trade Bar Top Lacquer. Both are extremely durable but also extremely smelly during application, due to their high VOC content. Good ventilation is essential when applying these products.

Can I use Danish Oil on a solid wood worktop?

Danish oil is perfectly fine for kitchen worktops as it's made from natural ingredients and is both food and child safe when dry. Dedicated worktop oils offer better durability, longevity and require less coats (typically 2 for new worktops or 1 for previously oiled worktops. They also require less maintenance than Danish Oils. Dedicated work top oils are also food and child safe when dry with some offering anti-bacterial properties. Worktop oils also tend to change the colour of the wooden worktops less than Danish Oils

I have black staining around the taps and sink of my worktop. What can be done?

The black stains around the taps and sink are likely to be mould spores in the work top as a result of prolonged water ingress in to the wood. If left untreated, this will ultimately lead to wood rot and decay. The affected areas should be sanded back to bare wood and treated with a mould and mildew cleaner such as Barrettine Mould and Mildew Cleaner, several applications may be required if the discoloration is bad. Once fully dried the whole worktop should be treated with a worktop oil to prevent further water ingress and future mould. For additional protection, a coat of Osmo Wood Protector (4006) can be applied prior to oiling. This product offers excellent water repellency.

Can I stain my kitchen worktop to a different colour?

In simple terms yes. This can be done by either applying a wood stain then sealing the stain in with a wood oil or varnish, or by using a pigmented or coloured wood oil such as Osmo Polyx Oil Tints or Fiddes Hard Wax Oil Tints, both of which are ideal for kitchen worktops, are food and child safe when dry and are easy to maintain and repair.

Can I apply a wood oil to a kitchen worktop that is always wet?

In short, the answer is no. for the wood oil or worktop oil to penetrate and cure in the surface of the wood, the work top needs to have been dry for at least 3 or 4 days. Chances are that if the wood has been wet for an extended period, it may have or will develop black mould and algae stains. Once the worktop has fully dried, we recommend treating the wood thoroughly with a mould and mildew cleaner and then allowing it to dry again. The surface of the wood may require a light sanding if it no longer feels smooth to the touch. Once the work top has been dried, treated for mould and algae and sanded, it can then be oiled with a worktop oil to prevent future water ingress. It's worth remembering that areas such as around the taps where water often collects should be wiped dry where possible and re-oiled as and when required to retain the woods water-repellent properties.

Which wood finish should I use on an untreated Bamboo Worktop?

For kitchen worktops, we tend to recommend using a wood oil or specifically a wooden worktop oil. Wood oils are durable, liquid and stain resistant, easy to maintain, patch repair and to keep looking like new. Osmo Top Oil is perfect for bamboo but needs to be applied very thinly as the grain will be tighter than softer wood work tops made from Oak, Beech and Ash.

How can I remove metal tin stains from an oiled work top?

Metal tins and cans can stain oiled finishes if the bottom of the tin has been or is sitting in water. The oxidisation of the metal can stain the finish or the wood if left long enough. The benefit of an oiled finish is that they are very easy to repair and when done will blend in with the surrounding area with no sign of a repair being done. Depending on how bad the stain is, it may be possible to remove it by lightly sanding with an abrasive pad such as a Woodleys Finishing Pad and then re-oiling the affected area. If the stain runs deeper into the actual wood, sand the area with a p120 grit sandpaper sheet until the stain has been sanded out and then re-oil the affected area.

What is the best way to prepare a worktop before oiling?

If the worktop is bare wood, little preparation is required. It can be wiped down with methylated spirit to clean and degrease the surface if required. This will clean and remove any surface dirt or grease that has marked the surface during installation.

Many new wooden worktops are supplied having already been given a thin maintenance coat of oil to protect the surface. Always read the manufacturer’s instructions before treating but most are ready for oiling with a dedicated work top oil.

Is there a better alternative to Danish Oil for a Kitchen worktop?

Danish Oil is perfectly fine for kitchen worktops and has always been one of the more traditional oils used. Wood oil technology has moved on over the years with new types of oils that are much more durable, longer lasting and only require 2 coats, as apposed to Danish Oil, Teak Oil or Pure Tung Oil, that require more coats and more frequent re-application to maintain the finish.

Our recommendation would be to look at the range of 'Worktop Oils'. They are extremely tough, durable, stain, scratch and water resistant. They are very easy to apply, maintain and patch repair if a particular area becomes worn or damaged.

An alternative to 'worktop oils' are the range of Hardwax Oils. Hardwax oils are as durable and long lasting as top oils, are available in clear and a range of colours, are also food and child safe when dry and equally as easy to apply, maintain and repair if required. If unsure about a particular colour try one or more of the Hardwax Oil samples.

To prepare the wooden worktop it may be necessary to strip the old Danish Oil finish by either lightly sanding the surface or wiping down with a clean, uncoloured cloth dampened with white spirit. Once the worktop has been prepared as above, simply apply 2 thin coats of Top Oil to the surface following the manufacturers preparation and application instructions on the tin. If the worktop is made from a dense exotic hardwood such as Teak, Mahogany, Ipe or Iroko, it may require an extra thin oil like Osmo Wood Wax Finish Extra Thin (1101) to achieve maximum penetration.

Can varnish be used on wooden worktops?

Varnish can be used on wooden worktops with some containing anti-bacterial properties. Our advice however is to use a worktop oil as they are easier to maintain and repair. Varnishes are fine all the while they remain intact. In kitchens however they are subjected to sharp objects that can break the seal between varnish and worktop allowing moisture penetration. Over time, this can lead to cracking, peeling and flaking, a situation that won't happen with a worktop oil.

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