Blog image

Tips on the Go: Winning worktops

Tips on the Go is a PG Bison series aimed at helping smaller companies who work with our products to improve the way they do business.

Formica LifeSeal Worktops are an affordable, attractive, low-maintenance, durable kitchen countertops solution. To ensure your customers are completely satisfied with their worktops and that they last for many years to come, we’ve compiled some tips for selling, fabricating with, installing and caring for Formica LifeSeal Worktops:

  1. Promote product benefits

Your customers might have memories of old-fashioned high-pressure laminates (HPL) and melamine faced board (MFB) in their minds and be unaware of how far these products have come in the past few years (both in terms of print and surface texture). You can help to change their minds by showing them what’s possible today.

  • Help your customers to see what’s possible by having samples available, showcasing the product in different applications in your showroom, and / or having a portfolio of good photos you can show them of jobs you have done using Formica LifeSeal Worktops. Show your customers how the newer designs can be difficult to distinguish from real marble, granite, stone, timber or even metal.
  • Emphasise cost savings. Using Formica LifeSeal Worktops not only offers sleek, sophisticated and realistic designs, but there are significant cost benefits too. You can get a stone (engineered or natural), concrete or wood look worktop at a fraction of the price of the real material.
  • Highlight low maintenance and longevity. When correctly installed and sealed, Formica LifeSeal Worktops provide an unbeatable, low-maintenance, durable and dependable work surface. They combine the strength of BisonBord with the durability of Formica HPL, offering resistance to wear, scuff, impact, stain and moisture (when installed correctly), making them ideal for kitchens.
  • Focus on easy cleaning. The HPL manufacturing process produces a closed surface, meaning there are no microscopic openings in the surface where germs can hide. A simple wipe-down with a damp cloth and mild soap is enough to keep counters clean and germ-free.
  • Provide helpful information. For your customers, choosing worktops can feel complicated – there are so many options available on the market. You can find the Formica LifeSeal Worktops product and care guides on the dedicated product page on the PG Bison website, as well as the full range of colours and designs available, and inspirational photos of the product in application.
  • Address customer concerns. Often, people’s biggest concern with using laminate worktops is moisture resistance. However, moisture damage can be easily avoided by taking the right steps during installation. This requires properly sealing the exposed worktop core, at cut-outs for stoves and sinks, butt joints and the edges where the worktop meets the wall, before the worktop is installed. The LifeSeal strip offers additional protection. It is located on the underside of the worktop and helps prevent water that has trickled down the front edge, from penetrating the worktop core.
  1. Fabricate and install correctly

Understanding how to work with Formica LifeSeal Worktops correctly will ensure easy fabrication and proper installation, which will help you to keep your clients happy and their countertops in great condition for many years. This means understanding what equipment and cuts to use when fabricating, as well as how to seal exposed edges and tips for cleaning the product once installed.

  • Use the right equipment and techniques. One of the great things about Formica LifeSeal Worktops is that it requires the same woodworking tools you already have in place for cutting other boards. There is no need to invest in specialised equipment. You can cut inhouse, without a stone mason or external contractor, saving money and time. However, it is important to follow correct cutting tips to ensure a great finish. For example:
    • Always cut and drill into the decorative HPL surface and not out from the underside of it
    • Marking can be done with a soft pencil either on the face of the worktop, if using a hand saw, or on the back if using an electric power saw
    • Protect the hob cut-out by covering the exposed edge with aluminium tape to prevent heat affecting it
    • For joining, use a 45-degree mitre down with biscuit joints and bracing
  • Seal all edges. During installation, all exposed edges, including the back edges where the worktop meets the wall, butt joints at the corners or breakfast nooks and cut-outs for sinks and stove-tops, need to be sealed with a suitable sealant to protect the core from moisture. Various products can be used to achieve this seal, including marine varnish or enamel paint. The sealant is applied in a dabbing motion to ensure adequate penetration. Two coats are applied, with time to dry in between, to ensure an effective seal. With the edges properly sealed, there is very little risk of water penetrating the core, so the worktops will look fantastic for years to come.
  1. Follow cleaning and maintenance instructions

A big positive of Formica LifeSeal Worktops is their low maintenance, easy-to-clean and hygienic surface. A simple wipe down with a damp cloth and mild soap is enough to free the surface of dirt and leave it as hygienically clean as kitchens should be. Ensure you explain to customers how to keep their counters in tip-top condition:

  • No harsh cleaning products. The surface does not require any resealing or polishing. Household polishes, including spray polishes, should be avoided, as these cause a sticky build-up on the surface and can trap dirt and germs. For the textured surface, a soft nylon nailbrush can be used to ensure a more thorough cleaning. Potentially persistent stains should be removed immediately.
  • Protect surfaces from hot pans. Never place hot objects from the oven, hob or microwave directly onto the laminate surface since this may lead to blistering. To prevent damage from hot objects, use heat resistant mats or boards on the surface of the worktop. Always use ashtrays for cigarettes.

For more information or to download the full technical guide, check out the Formica LifeSeal Worktops product page.

Blog image