If you have been shopping around for Corian countertops, you may have discovered that Corian is one of the most expensive finishes available. Until recently, you had to order your Corian countertops through a professional installer and then pay that installer to put them in. But with the recent introduction of unfinished Corian material to the marketplace, you can now purchase the basic supplies and prepare and place simple arrangements of these countertops yourself, keeping your kitchen looking fabulous and your pockets fat.
Things You'll Need
- Wooden shims (optional)
- Unfinished Corian countertop pieces with trim pieces and accessories kit
- Silicone caulk
- Denatured alcohol
- Clean rag
- Tinted epoxy
- Hot glue gun with temporary hot glue
- Clamp points
- Orbital sander with 100-grit, 150-grit and 220-grit discs
- Undermount sink (optional)
- Faucet kit (optional)
Decide on a color and pattern of Corian that you would like for your countertops. Measure the dimensions of your base cabinets and take a picture of them or sketch them out. Submit your order to an unfinished Corian supplier using all of this information. When you receive the unfinished countertop pieces, trim pieces and accessories, you are ready to move on to the next step.
Remove any existing countertops and prepare the base cabinets by making sure that the edges are clean and free of splinters and other debris. Apply shims if required to make the edges of the base cabinets consistently level.
Place support cleats on the top edges of the base cabinets anywhere that you have an appliance, such as a dishwasher, installed and along the edges of the sink-base cabinets if you plan to install an under-mount sink.
Begin at one end of the base cabinets, where they meet the wall. Put a piece of the Corian in place, ensuring that there is a seam support strip facing out on the free end. Your pre-cut Corian will come with some pieces that have these strips already attached (based on your earlier specifications), and they will be easily identifiable compared to those that do not have them. Lift the front edge of the piece of Corian and apply silicone caulk to all of the base cabinet edges below it. Gently lower the Corian onto the adhesive.
Apply some denatured alcohol to a clean rag and use the rag to wipe down the end edge of the installed piece of Corian where the second piece will butt up against it. Also clean the mating edge of the second piece. Generously spread tinted epoxy along both edges and then lay the second piece of Corian into place at an angle, so that the epoxied edges are together but the base cabinet edges are exposed. Apply silicone to the base cabinet edges beneath the second piece of Corian and slowly lay it in place.
Use temporary hot glue to attach one clamping point (that is, a small scrap block of lumber or extra Corian to provide a place for a clamp to grab onto) to the end of each piece of Corian, on either side of the new seam. Place them close enough to be clamped and then apply a construction clamp to hold the seam tight while it dries.
Install the remaining pieces of Corian following Steps 5 and 6.
Use the epoxy to attach the included filler strips to the exposed ends of your countertops.
Remove the clamps when all of the seams are dry. Spread some alcohol around each hot-glued clamp point to dissolve the temporary hot glue and remove all of these points. Sand the countertop seams from one end to the other with an orbital sander and 100-grit sandpaper to remove any excess epoxy. Sand the seams again with 150-grit sandpaper. Sand the entire finished countertop evenly with 220-grit sandpaper.
Attach the included backsplash strips to the wall using the silicone caulk. Install any sinks and/or faucets that you desire, following the directions included with your particular product.
Tips & Warnings
- Save scrap pieces of your chosen Corian for future repairs.
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