Laminate countertops are the most popular choice for kitchen, bath, and work surfaces today. They’re affordable, durable, and easy to maintain. But how do they hold up when you put hot things on them?
This article will answer the question by discussing what laminate is made of, whether or not it can withstand heat from pots and pans, as well as other everyday items like your morning coffee mug.
We’ll also discuss spills you might encounter in the kitchen such as hot soup or boiling water. So can you put hot things on laminate counters?
To answer the question briefly you cannot put hot things on laminate countertops because the laminate countertops are made up of plastics that can warp when exposed to heat. It is important to place your hot pots or pans on a trivet or hot pad.
Additionally, always be sure to use caution when handling hot items in the kitchen to prevent any potential accidents from happening.
Details On Why You Can’t Put Hot Things On Laminate Countertops
Laminate Is Made Up Of Multiple Layers
The first thing to understand about laminate countertops is that they are not just one solid piece of material. Laminate consists of multiple layers, which allows for a multitude of colors and patterns to be displayed on the surface.
These layers are put together using some type of adhesive, most commonly a contact cement. The top layer is usually made of melamine resin and is very durable.
The adhesive used to put the layers together is heat-resistant but the plastic materials that make up the countertop can warp when exposed to high temperatures. So even though the adhesive will hold, the plastics in the countertop may not.
So when you consistently put hot things on the laminate the layers could come apart and become warped. The more layers there are in the laminate, the easier it will be for them to come apart as well.
Laminate Are Made Up Of Plastics
The plastics contained in the laminate as mentioned before will warp when exposed to high temperatures. The materials used in the manufacturing of laminate countertops can include:
Polyvinylchloride (PVC) – This is a type of plastic that is commonly used in flooring, siding, and roofing. It is durable but not heat-resistant so it will warp when exposed to high temperatures.
Polyethylene – This is a type of plastic that is commonly used in packaging and bottles. It is durable but not heat-resistant so it will warp when exposed to high temperatures.
Acrylic – This is a type of plastic that can be clear or opaque. It is durable but not heat-resistant so it will warp when exposed to high temperatures.
So as you can see, the plastics used in laminate countertops are not heat-resistant and will warp when exposed to high temperatures. This is why you cannot put hot things on them.
What Happens When You Put Hot Things On Laminate Countertops?
So we now know laminate countertops are not as heat resistant as we might like them to be. But what exactly happens when you put hot things on laminate countertops?
1. The Laminate Countertop Can Become Discolored
The top layer of the laminate, which is made of melamine resin, can discolor when exposed to high temperatures. This means that your beautiful countertop may start to look dingy and stained over time if you consistently put hot things on it.
The heat from the pan, pot, crockpot, or toaster will cause discoloration – which may sometimes appear gradually over a period of time or instantly depending on the temperature.
The heat from items like these can cause discoloration of laminate countertops by breaking down the layers that make them up. The top layer will likely become stained.
2. Heat Makes Laminate Supceptible To Staining
Another problem that can occur when you put hot things on laminate countertops is staining.
The heat from the pan, pot, crockpot, or toaster will make it a lot easier for the countertop to become stained from things like juice, coffee, pasta sauce, etc.
If you have colorful laminate countertops then the stains are more easily noticeable too because of the contrast between them and your countertop color.
So what happens is that when a hot object like one of those listed above is put on your laminate it can cause staining from liquids or food particles.
3. The Laminate Countertop Can Become Warped
As I might have indicated before, the more layers that are contained in laminate countertops, the easier they will be to warp.
The reason this happens is that all of those plastics listed above can become too soft when exposed to high temperatures and then cool off very quickly.
This may cause them to start warping which makes your beautiful countertop look like it’s cracked or broken.
This is why you cannot put hot things on laminate countertops because the heat from them can cause them to warp and potentially ruin your countertop.
4. The Laminate Countertop Can Become Burned
I’ve already mentioned that the plastics used in laminate countertops are not heat-resistant.
So when exposed to high temperatures, they can become burned – which may be intentionally or accidentally left on your countertop for too long. When this happens it is likely that you will need to replace your countertop if you want a pristine look.
The burn will create a black mark on the surface and it is likely that no amount of cleaning will be able to remove it.
This means that if you have something like a hot pot or pan sitting on your laminate for an extended period of time, there’s a good chance that you’ll end up with a burn mark on your countertop.
5. Laminate Countertops Could Become Dull
Laminate countertops can also become dull over time if they are constantly exposed to high temperatures.
This is because the heat will cause the surface of your countertop to start losing its sheen and luster.
The top layer of melamine resin that I mentioned earlier is what gives laminate countertops their glossy appearance, so if it’s constantly exposed to heat then that layer will slowly start to disappear.
Once the top layer is gone, your countertop may look very different than when you first bought it and there’s not much you can do about it.
6. Laminate Countertops Could Become Cracked or Dented
The last thing that could potentially happen if you put hot things on laminate countertops is that they could become cracked or dented.
This is because the heat will cause the plastic to expand and then when it cools off, it can crack or dent.
If your countertop is already damaged in any way before you place a hot object on it, the heat may make that damage worse so you should be extra careful.
The best thing to do is place something like a cutting board or a plate between the hot object and your countertop to help spread out the heat.
How To Protect Your Laminate Countertops From Heat
There are a few ways you can protect your laminate countertops from heat. Let us take a look at them:
- Make sure that there is enough space between the countertop and hot objects like pans or plates.
- Place some trivets underneath your plates so they don’t directly touch the surface of your laminate countertops.
- Make sure to not place very hot things on top of any other object because it can cause those items to become damaged too.
- If you have a cutting board or a plate, use that as your buffer between the hot object and the countertop.
- Use oven mitts when handling anything that’s very hot to avoid any potential damage.
- Regularly clean your countertops with a damp cloth to remove any liquids or food particles.
- These are some tips on how to protect your laminate countertops from heat. If you follow them, then you can help prevent any damage that may occur.