If you’re like me, your kitchen is the most important room in your house. It’s where you prepare food for yourself and your family – meaning you may not want to take any risks by using harsh chemicals on your countertops. So can you use acetone on laminate countertops?
The answer is yes, but with some caveats. Acetone can cause some discoloration, usually a yellowing of the surface that can be difficult to remove and may require refinishing your entire countertop.
If the right precaution is taken, however, you can use acetone to clean tough stains on your laminate countertops, but be sure to test it in an inconspicuous area first. Acetone is a very strong chemical solvent that can damage the surface of your countertops if used incorrectly.
So start by mixing one part acetone with two parts water, then apply it to the stain and let it sit for a few minutes before wiping it off. If the stain still remains, you may need to repeat this process once more before wiping away any residue with clean water and a cloth.
In the rest of this article, I will go over the pros and cons of using acetone on laminate countertops.
The Pros Of Using Acetone On Laminate Countertops
1. Acetone Removes Tough Stains From Laminate Countertops
If you have any tough stains on your laminate countertops, acetone can be a great way to remove them.
It’s a strong chemical solvent that can break down the dirt and grime that has built up on your counters.
Meaning you can use acetone-based cleaners to clean your laminate countertops without having to worry about the harsh chemicals damaging the surface.
You can also use acetone-based nail polish remover to clean your laminate countertops.
If you have any tough stains that are embedded in the acrylic material, acetone-based nail polish removers can be a great solution for removing them. Just make sure not to use too much of it use it too frequently as this could damage your counters.
The safest way to use acetone is to dilute it with some water to first see how the countertop reacts to it.
However, you wouldn’t want this to be your first alternative to dealing with tough stains like those from wine, coffee, etc. Once you have tried mild dish soap or water on the stain and it isn’t working, then you can try acetone.
But always test it on an inconspicuous area first to make sure that it doesn’t damage the surface of your countertops.
2. Acetone Remove Glue Or Adhesives From Laminate Countertops
If you’ve ever tried to remove stickers or decals from your laminate countertops, you know how difficult it can be.
The adhesive can often leave behind a sticky residue that is hard to get rid of.
But acetone can help get rid of this adhesive residue without causing any damage to your counters.
Just mix one part acetone with two parts water, then apply it to the adhesive residue and let it sit for a few seconds before wiping it off.
If the adhesive residue still remains, you may need to repeat this process once more before wiping away any residue with clean water and a cloth.
The acetone will help to break down the adhesive that is causing your problem.
But don’t use acetone if the adhesive is still wet and stuck on your countertops as this could cause damage to the surface of your laminate countertops.
Instead, try using a dull knife or razor blade to scrape off any remaining residue before applying whatever cleaner you were going to use next (water, soap/dish detergent, etc).
3. Acetone Can Be Used To Prep Laminate Countertop For Painting
If you have recently installed new laminate counters in your kitchen and are thinking of changing the color scheme, it can be a great idea to use acetone as the primer.
Acetone is very effective in dissolving oils and waxes that may otherwise prevent your paint from sticking to the countertops.
It will help to strip the countertop of any finishes, polishes, oils, or any other contaminants so your paint will have a much better chance of sticking.
You want to do this by soaking a microfiber cloth into an acetone solution and then wiping down the surface of your counters.
Just make sure that the surface is completely dry before going ahead to apply paint.
4. Acetone Is A Cheap And Effective Way To Clean Countertops
If you are on a budget and want to clean your laminate countertops with the least amount of money, acetone is one of the best solutions.
Acetone can be bought in large containers at most home improvement stores for very low prices (usually less than $20).
Or if you have some nail polish remover lying around, you can use it to clean your countertops.
Just make sure you dilute the nail polish remover in some warm water before applying any acetone solution on them as pure acetone is very strong and could damage some surfaces.
Or grab a microfiber cloth or old towel, dip it into an acetone-water mixture, and wipe the counters.
Just be sure to test any acetone mixture in an inconspicuous area before using it on your entire countertop, as some laminate surfaces may become damaged if exposed to too much acetone.
5. The Abrasiveness Of Acetone Can Be Controlled
Mixing your nail polish remover with water will allow you to control the amount of abrasiveness that is in the mix.
If you want a very soft and gentle cleaning solution, then just add less acetone or no acetone at all. For more aggressive cleaning action, use pure acetone.
You can also use water alone to dilute acetone and make your own solution for cleaning.
You can buy some glass bottles at the dollar store, fill them with pure acetone and then cap it off with a spray nozzle (the ones used on Windex). Or you could mix up a big bottle of nail polish remover using warm water and store it in a spray bottle.
This will give you more control over the amount of acetone that is used when cleaning your counters, which is especially important if you are using pure acetone and want to avoid any damage.
The Cons Of Using Acetone On Laminate Countertops
There are a few downsides to using acetone on laminate countertops – most of which will occur when you have a peculiar laminate countertop or use too much acetone, or leave acetone on the laminate countertop for too long.
Acetone can cause damage to some surfaces, so always test a small area first just in case and avoid using pure acetone on your surface if you are not sure about it.
Below are some of the common cons to using acetone on laminate countertops:
1. Acetone Can Discolor Laminate Countertops
If you use too much acetone or leave the acetone on the countertop for too long, it can cause some discoloration.
This is usually a yellowing of the surface that can be difficult to remove and may require refinishing your entire countertop.
So always make sure you are using the correct amount of acetone and you are not leaving it on the countertop for too long.
If your laminate is discolored, try using a mild abrasive cleaner or an acetone-water mixture to remove any stains and yellowing from the surfaces.
2. Acetone Can Remove Protective Coating
If your laminate countertops were protected with a protective coating, it will be removed when you clean them with acetone.
This may sound like a good thing as some of these coatings can look bad and yellow over time, but the removal of this coating is not always desirable since it provides extra protection for your counters from stains.
Acetone can also remove the finish on your laminate countertops, which will leave them looking dull and faded.
So if you are using acetone to clean your counters, be sure to test a small area first and only use a mild acetone-water mixture to avoid any damage.
And if your counters have lost their finish, there is not much you can do except for refinishing them.
3. Acetone Can Cause Laminate Countertop To Dull
If you are not careful, the acetone can also cause your laminate countertops to become dull and faded.
This is usually because too much acetone was used when cleaning, or the acetone was left on the surface for too long. It can also happen when you use acetone too frequently on your laminate countertops.
To avoid this, always use the correct amount of acetone and make sure you are not leaving it on the countertop for too long.
If your counters have become dull, try using a polish or wax to help restore their shine.
4. Acetone Leaves Behind A Strong Smell
Another downside of using acetone on laminate countertops is that it can leave behind a strong smell – especially if you are using a pure form of acetone.
The good news about the smell is that it does not last very long and will soon fade away after several hours.
But for some people, this may be enough to make them decide against using acetone on their laminate countertops.
So if you are concerned about the smell, try a milder form of acetone to minimize this problem and make sure you do not leave it on your surface for too long.
5. Requires Scrubbing To Remove Acetone Residue After Use
Acetone is a strong chemical and it can leave behind a residue after use. This residue will need to be scrubbed off using a mild abrasive cleaner to be able to remove all traces of acetone.
So if you are using acetone to clean your counters, be sure to have a good cleaning solution on hand to remove any residue after use.
How To Use Acetone To Clean Laminate Countertops
So now that we have gone over some of the pros and cons of using acetone on laminate countertops, let’s take a look at how to actually use acetone to clean them.
- The first thing you will want to do is test a small area of your countertop with acetone to make sure it will not damage the surface.
- Next, clean the surface of your laminate countertop using mild dish soap and a microfiber cloth or sponge.
- Make sure to rinse and dry the surface of the laminate countertop thoroughly before moving ahead to apply the acetone.
- Depending on the type of stain or dirt you’re cleaning, mix acetone with water in a ratio of one part acetone to four parts water.
- Be sure to use a soft cloth and apply the mixture sparingly as too much acetone will cause damage.
- Use the cloth to apply the mixture in a circular motion to scrub off any dirt or stains on the surface of the laminate countertop.
- You can increase the amount of acetone if the earlier mixture did not get rid of the stain you’re after.
- Rinse and dry your countertop thoroughly once you have finished scrubbing them with mild dish soap and warm water to remove any acetone residue.
While there are some downsides to using acetone on laminate countertops, these can usually be avoided by using the correct amount of acetone and making sure you are not leaving it on your surface for too long.
If you are careful, acetone can be a useful way to get rid of those stubborn stains or spills that would otherwise end up ruining your countertops.
So if you have some time and want to save yourself some money, give acetone a try the next time one of these messes pops up.