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butcher block countertop finishing

11 years ago

I apologize in advance if this topic has been covered already. I did a search but didn't find an answer to my specific question. We are putting Ikea Numerar oak counter tops in the kitchen and after reading many threads here (and blog posts and so on elsewhere) about the pros and cons of a Waterlox type finish vs. oil finish, I'm pretty sure I want to go the oil-it-every-few-weeks route. I just like the soft look and feel of oiled wood more than a finish that looks like a finish if you know what I mean.

However, I read in several discussions about Waterlox that you need to finish the bottom side of the counter as well as the top so that the wood doesn't absorb more moisture through the bottom and warp. Is the same thing necessary if we are just going to oil it? We obviously won't be able to keep oiling the bottom side after they're installed.

If you have oiled wood counter tops, could you post whether you oiled both sides and if you've had any trouble with warping after installation? We will put a moisture barrier above the dishwasher, and are planning to use just plain mineral oil (unless someone knows of a good reason to use a different type of oil)


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