How To Install Laminate Countertop Over Dishwasher

A new laminate countertop can change the entire look of your kitchen. However, not everyone knows how to install it. If you are wondering how to install a laminate countertop over the dishwasher or a laminate countertop in general, we'll go over the details that you will need to know.

Here is the general overview of installing a laminate countertop over a dishwasher:

  1. Get the measurements for the area that you will be covering.
  2. Remove the old countertop and dishwasher.
  3. Before starting the installation, finish all areas that will show.
  4. Place the dishwasher in its spot.
  5. Place the countertop on top of the cabinet and dishwasher and trim the countertop if needed.
  6. Apply the recommended adhesive at the miter and tighten the miter bolt.
  7. Screw the brackets.
  8. Install return splashes and end caps/countertop trims.

Of course, installations are never as easy as they appear on paper. To make sure you're going in with a clear head, you might have other concerns that need answers. For example, how much clearance will you need between the countertop and the dishwasher? If you'd like to smooth over the details, keep reading ahead.

A male hand measuring the kitchen countertop, How To Install Laminate Countertop Over Dishwasher

Do You Install a Dishwasher Before or After the Countertop?

The first step before installing a countertop is figuring out which comes first—the dishwasher or the countertop? 

When it comes to installing countertops, it is always the last step in the renovation. As some suggest, you should install other appliances before installing the countertop, such as refrigerator, microwave, etc.

So, it is always better and easier to install a dishwasher before the countertop. This way, you can ensure the countertop will transition seamlessly from surface to surface. You won't need to revisit the project since you'll make the accommodations for the appliance once it's installed. 

A contractor placing and installing a laminate kitchen countertop

What Size of Laminate Countertop Do You Need?

Here's an instructional video from Lowe's explaining what you'll need to do before doing the installation: 

The perfect size of the laminate countertop varies from kitchen to kitchen. But here is how you can find out the size of the laminate countertop that you need:

  • Measure the depth of the cabinet from the front to the wall.
  • To check the length, measure along the back wall for accuracy.
  • Account for any overhangs by adding about a quarter of an inch to an inch to the size.
  • Lastly, check the backsplash height.

Are Build-Up Strips Required for Countertops?

Yes, installing build-up strips is a must if you want to give the countertop adequate support.

What Screws To Use for Laminate Countertops?

Many DIYers are confused about the suitable size of screws for installing laminate countertops. In general, a screw should not be longer than the thickness of the laminate countertop unless you want the screws to come through the top.

On average, a one and quarter-inch (1 ¼) screw works well for laminate countertops. But check the laminate countertop's thickness before securing it with screws to save yourself from trouble.

What Is the Best Adhesive for Laminate Countertops?

It is common to cut one end of the laminate countertops at a 45-degree angle when installing them in an L shape. This technique offers a seamless and cohesive look. However, to join both of the pieces of the laminate countertop, a strong adhesive is required. 

But the question is which adhesive you should use. When it comes to laminate countertops, contact cement is one of the most commonly used adhesives. You can use it to glue the two pieces of the laminate countertop together and stick the countertop to the top of the cabinet frame.

For a more detailed explanation, here's a YouTube video on how to join laminate:

How Do You Install Laminate Edging?

Follow the subsequent steps to install laminate edging.

  1. Sand down the edges of the laminate countertop to get rid of any bumps and rough edges.
  2. Now, using masking tape, attach the laminate edging to the countertop. Make sure the top of the trim lines up with the top of the countertop.
  3. With the help of a marker, outline the excess edging from the back.
  4. Remove the tapes, and cut along the marker lines.
  5. Glue the edging to the countertop using contact glue.
  6. Wipe off the excess, and that’s it.

For extra help on installing the edging, here's a YouTube video:

How Do You Hide a Gap Between the Countertop and the Wall?

Hiding the gap between the countertop and the wall depends on the severity of it. Is it a small gap? If it isn't wide, you can fill it in using silicone or latex caulk. Wider ones will need the additional support of a rod before you cover it with caulk.  

If the solutions above aren't suitable for your situation, there's another way to cover wide gaps. You can also cover it with trim. Trim is the simplest method. There is a wide variety of trim options to choose from. So, it can add to the overall look of the kitchen should you go this route.

How Much Clearance Do You Need Between the Countertop and Dishwasher?

Did you finally decide to renovate your kitchen? That’s great! But do you know how much clearance space there should be between your dishwasher and the countertop?

According to some, there should be around 4 1/4 inches of clearance space between the dishwasher and countertop. However, the clearance space required for your specific dishwasher might be different, so always read the instruction manual for a more accurate figure.

What if There Is Less Clearance Space Between the Countertop and Dishwasher Than Needed?

Every dishwasher installation requires clearance space. But what if you do not have the recommended amount of space between the appliance, countertop, and the floor?

In situations like this, you can increase the clearance space by removing a tile. However, this technique will not work if you do not have tiles on the floor.

Why Is There a Gap Above My Dishwasher?

Are you wondering why there is a dishwasher air gap above the sink? This air gap is a 2-inch fitting mounted above the sink. It prevents contaminated water from entering the dishwasher from the backflow. This air gap is crucial to keep the clean water separated from the used, dirty water.

How Do You Support a Countertop Over a Dishwasher?

Wooden countertop and wooden cupboards and cabinetries

Laminate countertops can easily be placed over a dishwasher. However, it all depends on the front edge of the countertop.

To ensure you won't need support, first check the directions of the countertop you've purchased. If it didn't come with build-up strips to lift and support the countertop, you'll need to check if the dishwasher stays clear from the front edge.

If it doesn't have enough clearance, it will need some support. 

So, how can you support a countertop over a dishwasher then? One of the easiest ways is to keep a plywood countertop over the dishwasher first and then mount the laminate countertop on top of it.

If your laminate countertop does not feature plywood, then you can make your own mounting strips with 1x2 lumber. To attach them to the countertop, flip it so it's facing the underside. You should have a total of 4 support strips. Space them out 2 feet apart. Additionally, it should be 2 inches away from the ends. 

Does a Countertop Sit on a Dishwasher?

Yes, for the countertop to transition seamlessly from surface to surface, it must sit on top of it. And you can do it by using the mounting clips located on top of the dishwasher.

All you have to do is use some screws to attach those mounting clips to the bottom of the countertop. Many countertops have plywood or particleboard underlayment which makes the process a lot easier.

Is Dishwasher Trim Necessary?

A white marble texture laminate kitchen countertop

Yes, the dishwasher trims are necessary because they reduce noise pollution. In other words, when you close the dishwasher door, there is a gap between the tub and the door. The air in this gap allows the sound of the dishwasher to travel and hence leads to noise pollution.

By installing a simple dishwasher trim, you can fill in that gap and reduce the dishwasher noise.

If you need more guidance, here's a YouTube video explaining how to install a dishwasher trim in detail: 

Final Takeaway

That concludes all that you need to know about installing a countertop over a dishwasher. It might sound scary at first, but if you're prepared, you won't likely have to revisit the project a second time. We hope you found the information above helpful! 

Before you go, do you need help with renovating other areas of your kitchen? Are there gaps between the cabinets and your kitchen walls? We can give you some ideas on how to fill them. If you'd like to learn more, check out this post: How To Fill A Gap Between Kitchen Cabinets And Wall

Are you thinking about adding drawers to kitchen cabinets? We can also guide you in that area. To learn more, check out this post: How To Add Drawers In Kitchen Cabinets

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