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Home Staging Problem Solving: Removing Burn Marks From Laminate Counter Tops

When you are preparing your home for sale even the tiniest details matter. While you may overlook many small ‘flaws’ in your home and find them very unimportant most potential home buyers make a conscious effort to be as eagle eyed as possible and they will almost always spot them.

The Rise of Laminates

The kitchen and its counters and cupboards are things that any home buyer will scrutinize carefully. Not so long ago, laminate counter tops were rarely high on a buyer’s want lists as many considered them a cheaper, tackier option.

Things have changed though, as the quality and appearance of these kitchen fixtures has changed so dramatically. In fact it can sometimes be hard to tell, at a glance, a good laminate from the natural stone it can be designed to mimic. And given that they are easier to maintain on a daily basis than most other counter top types some people now even prefer them. But only if they are in good shape.

Solving a Burn Mark Problem

The one thing that can spoil the great looks of a laminate counter top is an accidental burn mark. As careful as people are, forgetting to put a trivet down before placing a hot pot on a laminate counter top is easy to do if you are very busy but if you do not realize your mistake right away a scorch mark may be left behind when you finally take the hot pot away.

This need not be the end of the world though, or the end of the beauty of your laminate counter top. Here are a few things you can do to remove those marks before potential home buyers arrive that can be very effective:

Toothpaste – Simple household toothpaste can be used to help remove light burns on a laminate counter top. All you need to do is apply the toothpaste to the burned surface and leave it there to sit for several minutes. Using a soft cloth rub the burned area gently without scrubbing it then rinse the entire area with clean water. Repeat until the stain is gone.

The toothpaste you should use is the plain variety, the colored kind is not really suitable. If you do not have any on hand you can also create a thin paste of baking soda and water and apply it in the same way to get the same effect.

Lemon Juice – Pure lemon juice can act as a natural bleach to help get rid of some burn marks on a laminate counter top. Apply it in the same way as the toothpaste and make sure that the counter top is well rinsed and dried so that none of the slightly acidic lemon juice is left behind.

Light Sanding – More serious burn marks may be able to be removed by sanding them very lightly with dampened 1,000 grit sandpaper. This can be a tricky process though and it needs a very light hand so take your time and work slowly and carefully.

A Last Resort – Is there just one burn mark that is simply too stubborn to be removed by any of these methods, but otherwise the counter is in great shape? Here’s a ‘trick’ you can try; placing a permanent hot pad over the burnt spot. Take four tiles that coordinate with your counter top and use adhesive to make a square on top of the burn. Apply grout between them to create a perfect spot to set hot pots and pans. This not only solves the problem but also adds an extra functionality that the new homeowners should find very handy in the future.

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