Fitting Kitchen worktop

We need to replace our kitchen worktop.

It’s a straight run of c. 5m. It will need a join.

Trying to get a fitter: Our options are £1500 for the work top (cheap laminate) and £300 fitting with a 4 week leadtime OR £400 for the worktop and £300 fitting and a 3 month leadtime!

Never fitted a worktop but the above options are leading me to having a go!

Any advice please?

There’s likely someone on YouTube who’ll give you lessons for free. If you already have a decent router then you’ll need to procure the appropriate jigs. Also maybe an idea to get a second-hand length of worktop off somewhere like Gumtree to do a few practice runs. Go on, you know you want to!


I could practice on the old section and use the old top as a template. The join would be a simple straight cut (no horrible corners). There’s a couple of end that need edging. We might go for upstands but I assume that’s no different than fitting skirting.

Hope you’re good at DIY.
I watched the guys install my Oak ones a few years ago. I realised how hard it was, as there is no such thing as a straight wall in an old house.
Even if it looks straight and just been replastered🤷🏻‍♂️


A butt join simplifies things. Best to use a router to get a good clean end, especially with laminate. Could also do without a jig for routering the recesses for the connectors underneath if, as I suspect, you’re anyway handy.

Upstand is very much equivalent to skirting board.

Another option is to “cheat” and join the laminate at the sink, using a full depth sink like this Ikea one.


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Been watching some videos. Since I can use the old 'top as a template, getting it flush with the wall shouldn’t be hard. If I do it right, the join between the 3m and 2m lengths can be on the edges of the pre-cut lengths. It’s just a case of cutting out for the joining bolts.

A visible join will need a suitable router to cut it accurately. By the time you have bought one, and practiced enough to become proficient, you will probably be thinking that paying a pro is money well spent.
The rest of the fitting is reasonably straightforward, but you only get one go at that all important join before that posh worktop becomes firewood.


tbh it’s not the cost of the fitter that’s the issue… it’s finding one! It’s a days work (probably a lot less). I’m going to do some ringing around first of all to see if I can get a pro. in to do it though, tbh, I’m not hopeful. What is it with tradesmen at the moment?!

The last time I looked at this, ten years ago, the jig was well over £100 to buy :blush:

Someone is offering to lend me a jig but, tbh, for a straight join I’m not sure a jig is needed - correct me if I’m wrong.

Is there a return piece to fit the straight run onto?

If the join is a simple butt joint it has to be perfect, and you need a router and jig, not a saw!

An alternative which is much easier would be to use a metal insert in the joint. The end result isn’t quite as neat, but it creates a better seal which is important in MDF or timber, and hides minor imperfections so even cutting with a hand saw is then an option.

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A straight joint is not difficult via DIY.

The key requirement for a join avoiding those horrible metal joining strips that protrude and cover the edges of the join) is absolutely straight cuts, and without chipping the laminate. However, even if you need to cut one of the pieces to be joined that is simple to achieve if one of the outer ends abuts a wall because you can put an imperfect cut against the wall and cover the very end with tiling, upstand etc.

Otherwise for a tight, lasting joint, the ends ideally need clamping together. (If the cupboards beneath are rigid enough and clamped well together you can just butt up, using a suitable gap-filling adhesive, and screw down well via brackets from below, but there is risk that over the years there could be slight shifting.) Clamping is normally done with two clamps inserted within routed holes/grooves from the underside. The clamps consist of threaded rods and and nuts with usually shaped pieces of metal to fit edges of holes though potentially any suitably sized pieces of metal with hole, or even washers, could be used. Ideally a router is used to make the holes and grooves, using a template. The cost of professional fitting could more than buy you a decent router, and a circular saw to make light work of a straight cut. Practice on an offcut or ex-display damaged worktop sold cheap.

After cutting etc, coat the exposed chipboard of cut ends with a waterproof sealant - e.g. varnish - to protect it from water damage, because of the potential for seepage through the joint or under the tiled edge etc due to spillages, wiping down etc. Due to the sponge-like nature of the chipboard several coats will be required, and lightly sand in between, probably several times, as wood fibres will swell slightly.

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Not sure if I follow but I think, no.

First design your finished item. That sounds strange but you need to take account of walls and straightness, position of the joint to avoid wet areas, and position of joint to avoid sight lines.
The joint will need to be extremely accurate on both sides, 90 degrees to the long edge and arrow straight. The laminate will chip if you use the wrong blade, cut in the wrong direction, or from the wrong side. The edges will need waterproofing/sealing before you make the join. Use a biscuit joint with the the toggles to pull the joint together. If the walls are not straight in an older property it is often easier to cut in to the wall by removing some plaster. It isn’t difficult but it does need thinking about.
I owned a kitchen company for some years.

Are you sure you want to do this? :thinking:


Earlier this year, we had our work top covered, using a 8mm quartz overlay.

The company came out, measured and made templates. Cut it to to the templates in the factory, then installed them over the existing work tops.

We have found it to be more robust, resilient, neater than a laminate.

It was also cheaper than a complete new work top with less work to have installed.

Well recommended.


That’s a good idea BUT SWMBO has deigned I’m not good enough to fit the worktop and we’re getting a ‘man in’.

Ho Hum!

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@Dunc is your man here.

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SWMBO has said ‘no way’ :wink:

I saw different opinions on how to do this (that is when I thought I was still doing it!). Most videos just glued and clamped. However a couple used biscuit joints which, as you infer, is the best method.

The trickiest part will be scribing the worktop to the wall. Best YouTube it.