LESLIE: Alice from Chicago’s up next and you’ve got something that happened to your countertop. What’s going on?
ALICE: Well, I had a very hot pan that was placed on top of my white Formica top.
TOM: Oh, no.
ALICE: But it’s … the top is 20 years old.
TOM: It’s time for a new one, Alice.
LESLIE: (chuckling) Yeah. You couldn’t have happened to have a better reason to now get a new countertop.
TOM: Yeah. To try to take the burn marks out of a laminate is almost impossible. If it’s slightly singed on the surface, you could use a rubbing compound and try to take some of it out. But the colored layer is not that thick. And so, what you …
LESLIE: Yeah, the laminate itself is like an eighth of an inch; it’s so tiny.
TOM: Right. But what you’re seeing is a chemical reaction between the laminate and the pan. When it heats up like that, it turns a darker color and, really, it’s not repairable. The good news is, Alice, that if you do replace this with one of the more modern materials – like solid surfacing material – if this ever happens again, you can use a … you can abrade that burn mark out of it or that knife mark out of it or something of that nature and you can sand it away.
LESLIE: (overlapping voices) Well, and some of the solid surfacing – like Silestone – is scorch resistant. So that’s always an option to look for. And you know, granite is also scorch resistant, so …
TOM: So this is fabulous news, Alice. You’re going to get a brand new countertop.
ALICE: Yes, it is. (laughing) I need a brand new kitchen, though.
TOM: Well then, they have to get one to match it, you know? Three most expensive words in home improvement: might as well. (laughing) Alright, Alice. Thanks so much for calling us at 1-888-MONEY-PIT.