Install New Tile Over Formica
LESLIE: Alright, countertop talk with Mark in Washington. What can we do for you?
MARK: I recently purchased a home, a 20s cottage style, and the kitchen was remodeled in 1972 and they put in a yellow Formica countertop. The backsplash is also yellow Formica. (Leslie chuckles)
TOM: And what’s wrong with that? (chuckling)
MARK: Well, this happens to be the house I grew up in.
TOM: OK. Time for a change.
MARK: After 36 years I’m a little tired of the Formica.
LESLIE: (overlapping voices) You’re like, “I’m sick of it.”
TOM: (overlapping voices) Yeah, you’re ready for a decorating change. (chuckles)
MARK: And what we’d like to do is see if we can go right over the Formica with subway tile as the backsplash. We’re going to replace the countertop. The problem is they put the backsplash up, put the Formica up and then they put the cabinets up over it and we’re going to see if we can just go ahead and put the tile on over the Formica. Or are we going to have to pull that backsplash off?
LESLIE: You actually can go ahead and put the tile over the existing Formica. If it’s super smooth and shiny you may need to scuff it up a little bit just so the mastic does adhere better to the Formica itself.
LESLIE: You want to, of course – you know it depends on how this was done. Is the countertop inset and then the backsplash is on top of it? You may need to have that counter installed first just in case there’s any movement, cracking, lifting up that sort of shifts that backsplash around. Get your new countertop in and then go ahead and put the tile up.
TOM: Mark, thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.