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Restoring the Shine on a Formica Countertop

August 11, 2010

I used Ajax cleanser to remove a spot on my Formica counter and it has left a dull mark. Is there any way to get the original look of the counter back?

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By beth bartlett from Prudenville, MI

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August 13, 20108 found this helpful
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Try using car wax. When we got new countertops, the installer told us to use that periodically to protect the counters - might work for you!

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November 17, 20105 found this helpful
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Someone suggested using Mop N Glo. Thanks! It worked very well. The only thing that got my worn Formica counter top to shine again. Just follow the directions.

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March 30, 201513 found this helpful
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To say; "You can't restore a long-lasting shine to formica" is simply NOT true! Formica is like "plexiglass" or any other hard acrylic. As an aircraft mechanic, I've had to "restore" acrylic canopies.

In my hobby/business, I repair and restore mid-century modern (mostly "Atomic Age") furniture that incorporates a LOT of formica. Replacing that original formica would ruin the piece as a collectable/antique.

You have to start by filling in the voids (yes, some people actually cut up food directly on formica, imbedding particles of plastic in their food and ruining their counter-top and knife edges!).

Use the same products made for repairing auto windshields. The best and most effective are the Novus products unless you know all about abrasive slurries. After you polish your formica, protect it with a good, hard wax like carnauba and follow that with a soft, sacrificial wax like beeswax...and don't be cuttin' up food on the dang counter-top anymore!

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March 30, 20155 found this helpful
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Formica stains: First off, chorine bleach destroys plastics in the same way UV rays do. You should never use it to sanitize your formica countertops as it actually encourages crazing and stain deposits. I'm not a big fan of chlorine and I prefer a sulfur based kitchen sanitzer used in professional kitchens, brew houses and by wine makers - metabisulfites of potassium or sodium - aka - campden tablets dissolved in a spray bottle with a mild soap.

Natural stains, the most common being "rust" can be removed with oxalic acid which is sold as "wood bleach" or you can extract your own from rhubarb leaves, sorrel or from mature poke plants. This also removes rust stains from porcelain, like sinks and tubs, but it won't remove the mineral deposits. Cean your formica well with HOT soapy water removing all oils, waxes or grease. Apply the OA mixed in VERY HOT water to the stain with a brush, then cover with plastic wrap to prevent it from dying out. The rust stain should be gone in an hour or two.
Oxygen bleaches and, dare I say it - chlorine will remove stains made by man-made dyes such as food coloring.

As I posted earlier, you can bring back the gloss of old formica. You can also resurface your counters with the resins used to "imbed" things in bartops and tables... polish out as instructed earlier.
I hope this helps someone.

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January 9, 20166 found this helpful
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Please DO NOT use car wax, floor wax, mop 'n glow, etc., on your kitchen countertops. These products are not safe for food preparation areas. A periodic application of olive oil, buffed off, leaves a temporary, safe shine.

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More Questions

Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

April 20, 2020

My husband removed ceramic tile from our kitchen backsplash and replaced it with new mosaic glass tiles and grout. The grout residue will not come off my formica countertop.

Please help! Thank you!

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April 20, 20200 found this helpful
Best Answer

Have you tried to mix some vinegar with some baking soda to make a paste? If you have not tried this make a paste and use a soft cloth to apply it to the counter top. Use circular motion to spread it around. Allow it to sit for around 10 minutes and write it up. Wash the countertop with warm water to remove the rest.

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April 20, 20200 found this helpful
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Boy - sugar water is anew one to me - hope it works as it sounds too simple to be true.

homeguides.sfgate.com/remove-dried-grout-laminate-countertop...

My son uses acetone that he buys from Ace or True Value Hardware store (stronger than regular nail polish - but nail polish might work?). You can ask someone in the paint department to help you - just explain your problem and directions should be on the container.

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April 8, 2018

What can be used to return the shine to the countertop where Lysol touched it and removed the shine?


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April 9, 20180 found this helpful
Best Answer

It will be a temporary fix, but you can get a countertop polish or furniture polish. The Lysol ate through the shine.

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7 Archives

ThriftyFun is one of the longest running frugal living communities on the Internet. These are archives of older discussions.

March 14, 2010

How can I clean and restore the shine on my Formica kitchen countertops that are 16 years old?

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August 11, 2010

I would like to do something with my Formica counters. I like the color, but they have gotten scratched and dull over time. Is there a clear finish I can use?

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November 5, 2009

I sprayed my formica countertop with a surface cleaner containing bleach and let it sit a bit too long (got distracted!) and when I came back to wipe it off, it took the shine off of the countertop in that area. Is there any way to get that shine back?

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January 7, 2010

How can I restore the shine to 17 year old Formica counters?

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