DIY Network

Solid Surfaces

How to Install a Countertop (page 2 of 3)

Learn how to fit, cut and install a new countertop, and how to join two countertops together.
Excerpted from Do It Yourself Home Improvement

More in Kitchen

Round-Edged Countertops

If your counter is supplied with a curved finished edge, it is not possible to create a simple right-angled butt joint. The best option is to use a joining strip, or a countertop jig. Making a mitered joint is possible, but will be hard to cut accurately unless you use a jig.

Countertop Joint Kits

Some manufacturers provide joint kits. Basically, these are colored fillers used to cover a less than adequate miter or butt joint. Some are epoxy-based, so you should remove any excess before it has a chance to dry.

Using a Jig

Professional kitchen installers use countertop jigs for accuracy. These specially designed tools are relatively expensive, although often they can be rented. The jig provides a template for a router to cut against. With practice, it produces very accurate cuts for each side of the joint required, and guides for notched cuts to fit connector bolts to hold the joint together.

Joining Square-Edged Countertops

View photo gallery instructions for this project

Square edges mean that two sections of countertop can be easily and neatly butt-joined without the need for a countertop jig. Once the countertop is fixed in place, the front edge may then be finished using a router.

Cut the countertop lengths to size and, if necessary, scribe. Apply wood glue along one of the joining edges.

Push the countertop together and secure the joint using a mending plate and screws. You may need to drill pilot holes for the screws, and apply weight to the countertop as you fasten the screws. Wipe away excess glue. For an even stronger joint, use two or even three mending plates.

Courtesy of DK - Do It Yourself Home Improvement © 2009 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Excerpted from Do It Yourself Home Improvement

© Dorling Kindersley Limited 2009