Kitchen - oak work surfaces Yay ot nay?

(64 Posts)
WetAugust Thu 29-Aug-13 17:21:29

They look nice but they seem to need maintenance in contrast to other surfaces are just wipe clean.

If I did plump for oak is it a case of the thicker the better? Because the 27mm thinnish ones do look good to me

Some seem to ne oak stave - is there anything I should look out for?

Thank you

fossil971 Thu 29-Aug-13 23:20:45

Hardwax oil (Osmo, etc) is the business. It is not like any other oil like Danish oil where you have to oil monthly. 2 or 3 coats give a waterproof, wineproof coating. No sanding needed for re-oiling if you need to.

I would say, if your worktop supplier uses any other oil/tries to flog you Danish oil, buy them unfinished & do them yourself. Or ask them why they don't use hardwax oil.

I can't see how the grooves really work as the flat bits between collect water and often the grooves aren't sloped. I saw a worktop once where a whole rectangular section had been machined to a slight slope like a drainer, which seemed a better idea.

greyvix Thu 29-Aug-13 23:22:24

Always, granite is pretty indestructible- I love mine- but it does have limescale round the taps. I think wire wool gets rid of it, but too scared to try.

WetAugust Thu 29-Aug-13 23:39:08

I'm going to be scared to use them when they're brand new no matter what they are made of!

Beetroot is banned! grin

I found the trouble with oiling wooden worktops isn't the oiling itself, it's having to move everything off the worktops and leave it off while the oil dries. That's microwave, toaster, breadbin, breadmaker, kettle, mug tree, etc., and in a small kitchen there's nowhere else to put that stuff.

WetAugust Fri 30-Aug-13 00:17:15

it would include cats in my kitchen too. Buggers insist on jumping up on the units

PolterGoose Fri 30-Aug-13 07:45:30

Love my oak worktops. We had a few mishaps at the beginning but they sanded out and looked good as new. I'm not especially careful round the sink so mine has gone a bit black but I have an old shabby cottage so it's in keeping, I never wanted mine to stay perfect. I've got a double Belfast sink and the cutout is huge so I use that as my main prep and serving area. I've used a hard wax oil supplied by he fitters for the worktops but I just use rapeseed oil on the big cutout and it looks good still. Re-oiling is strangely therapeutic.

Rooners Fri 30-Aug-13 08:54:06

George, I tried to post yesterday but it was down. There are some great drainers you can get, by simplehuman - they have a hole in the plactic underneath that drains into a single moveable channel/spout thingy so you can put it on a flat worktop and angle the spout into the sink.

We have got one on a normal draining board (ceramic) and the drips just go off the spout into the sink.

Pannacotta Fri 30-Aug-13 09:01:17

I have just bought 400mm from Worktop Express and it was cheaper than good quality laminate.
I also have Osmo hard wax oil to treat them with having read up on here.
They look lovely and I like the fact they are much less clattery than solid worktops.
For me that is worth a little extra tlc...

uggmum Fri 30-Aug-13 09:01:24

I had oak work tops. They looked lovely. But overtime they warped, especially around the sink. I did oil them regularly. So mine just could have been poor quality.

I had them changed to granite which I love. I've had no water damage with the granite. It looks as good as new even after 6 years. I do polish it a few times a day though.

We have just got a fab granite, it looks quite mottled and doesn't show marks at all - in fact, to the point where I have to peer really hard to make sure I've wiped up all the crumbs and spills. Perfect for the lazy cleaner like me...

LeonieDeSainteVire Fri 30-Aug-13 13:21:33

I have gone from hating our oak work tops to really liking them. The kitchen was new (by a builder who had renovated the property) when we moved in and the oak was dry and clearly not oiled at all. Initially I used a work top oil and it was rubbish, black bits started to develop round the sink, black marks appeared where I put a tin down etc, it looked a mess. Then I read on here about hardwax oil, so sanded out the marks and applied that and it has solved all the problems. No marks, no water damage (water beads rather than sinking in) and now I'm completely happy with them and would probably install them again.

I do think it depends on how careful you are with them though. Even when I had laminate tops I always wiped up water round the sink, never put hot pans straight on work tops and never, ever cut directly on the work top (yuk, how unhygienic is that?) so it doesn't require any more care for wood. You can't use aggressive spray cleaners on them, I just wipe mine with warm water and washing up liquid. And I use a glass surface protector under the kettle/teapot area to prevent stains.

Lonecatwithkitten Fri 30-Aug-13 13:30:18

I have work area with Granite and Island with oak. I loved granite and would have it again and again. ExH was a twat and despite being told not put certain things on wood (sometimes moments before) he did it is irreparably stained by some of the things he did.

WetAugust Fri 30-Aug-13 14:32:43

...and that's what worries me. If it was just me living here I'd have wood like a shot! But DS uses the kitchen and I would hate it if he damaged the surfaces carelessly.

I can't exactly ban him from the kitchen unfortunately.

alreadytaken Fri 30-Aug-13 15:48:08

you have 38mm because it's less likely to warp and there was something else the carpenter said/ did that reduces the risk. I think that was treating both sides of the wood and putting something over washing machines but it was a long time ago.

CinnabarRed Fri 30-Aug-13 15:58:06

Where can I buy hardwax oil from? Would a B&Q type place stock it?

myron Fri 30-Aug-13 15:59:15

AlwaysOneMissing

Granite is definitely more functional than marble. The latter is more porous and not suitable for worktops. I would always choose a non porous worktop which is the reason I chose quartz rather than granite in my own home. If budget was an issue, I would consider stainless steel or laminate. At the end of the day, it's personal choice - I wouldn't want to expend daily energy/vigilance maintaining a less practical worktop material.

However, I do acknowledge that wooden worktops look good and are cheap but personally, I think it's a false economy, you'll be changing the worktop 5yrs down the line - unless, you never use/splash the worktops with water, oil, cooking sauces, etc. I would consider a wooden worktop if I was refurbishing a property to sell on immediately but not for my own home. I am always amazed that people are prepared to spend quite a lot of money on their kitchen units and then seemingly run out when it comes to the worktops and their appliances. imho, it should be the other way round.

Chocotrekkie Fri 30-Aug-13 16:06:57

We get the oil from ikea - its like a milk and it goes on really well. It's ikea oak work top as well - been in 8 years now, it still perfect. We are quite careful with hot pans, water etc.
Kids scratched it quite badly with knives (I told them to get their own dinner cause I wasn't making anything else!) but a bit of sanding, couple of coats of oil and good as new.

We now only treat it every few months or when mil is coming to visit as she told us it was a stupid thing to buy

LeonieDeSainteVire Fri 30-Aug-13 16:38:00

We got the Hardwax oil online, from an eBay supplier I think. Ours is Fiddes Hardwax oil.

fossil971 Fri 30-Aug-13 17:03:54

AG Woodcare supply the Osmo hardwax oil (buy Top Oil which is a worktop version of the one for floors Polyx oil). If you have a lot to do you could buy the special brush. You can get all these things from ebay too.

CinnabarRed Fri 30-Aug-13 17:19:54

Thanks!

RedBushedT Fri 30-Aug-13 17:32:46

I have oak worktops and love them. They are beautiful and actually pretty low maintenance. I oil them once a year and they look good as new. I also have a Belfast sink. For fish draining I use similar to this from Lakeland [[http://www.lakeland.co.uk/23874/Versatile-White-Dishrack ]]
Which works great for me. It catches the drips and then I just to it down the sink and wipe the drainer down. smile

Billwoody Fri 30-Aug-13 17:52:07

We have oak worktops as desks in our office. We used Osmo Polyx oil to seal them. Put on two coats and we need do nothing again.

Tizwozliz Fri 30-Aug-13 18:01:34

If the worktop is treated properly splashes of water etc are no problem, they just bead on the surface to be wiped away.

We sealed both sides of our worktops and all cut edges and then have an additional foil barrier on the underside over the dishwasher.

We turned our worktop offcuts into large chopping boards. I'm surprised at people stating they want a surface they can cut straight onto, I'd never do this no matter what type of surface and have always considered myself fairly slatternly.

Pannacotta Fri 30-Aug-13 18:11:38

Where would I get a barrier for my dishwasher?
I forgot I needed that, presume it prevents warping?

Tizwozliz Fri 30-Aug-13 18:18:03

Yes, dishwasher gives off a bit of heat/damp so an extra layer of protection. We bought a sheet of stuff from B & Q.

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