Formica over formica?

The formica countertops in our kitchen are ugly and have some stains. Replacement is not in the budget.
Is is possible to lay new formica over the existing? I'd want it to last 5 years.
If possible, what's the procedure? Remove caulking, sand with 80 grit? 60 grit? Apply contact cement, laminate, roll, then trim edges?
Advice is appreciated.
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There are ways to get out or reduce many stains in laminate. A lot of elbow grease (and I think baking soda) is involved. Also, what do you mean by "last 5 years" - does this mean in 5 years they're ready to be thrown out, or in 5 years they're just starting to show wear? We sell a lot of Formica furniture where I work, and putting new laminate over old is a definite no-no.
It used to be you could go to a home store and buy pre-made laminate countertops pretty cheap and cut and joing them yourself. Thats probably the best way, because you'll be paying full retail for raw sheets of laminate anyways. And also, if you have bullnose edges, you'll need a special machine to heat and bend the laminate, but this heat would also cause the original layer of laminate to come off. Have I talked you out of it yet?
Steve
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Not worth it in ths case.

In 5 years we'll likely be selling or ready to rip the whole place apart and do a total remodel. If we sell, the new owners will either want to rip it all out or will be willing to live with whatever's there.

Why? What are the issues? Furniture is different than countertop, no?
I was told at a local home reno store (Rona, here in Canada) that it was sand and go. I'm (obviously) asking for a second opinion.

Not yet. <g>
No bullnose edges, everything is square.
I can replace the counters myself for the cost of 3 sheets of 3/4 inch MDF, 2 sheets of formica, and a couple of weekends. Maybe $300 Canadian for materials.
Should I plan to apply heat and lift the old laminate, then sand and apply the new stuff? That's feasible... It's a small kitchen and I could probably lift the old stuff in a long day.
Thanks for your feedback and advice, Steve.
djb
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No its the same. Too many issues to spell out at this hour. For your situation it should be fine however.

OK, then we can talk about it.

Yes thats the right way. Plan to go through a lot of sand paper, the glue might gum it up pretty good.

Your welcome!
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Based on your info and the feedback from bambam, I'm thinking at this point to lift the old formica with heat, scrape the old glue to a reasonable point, then glue/screw 1/8 inch hardboard or MDF (instead of the 1/4" bambam suggests) and reapply new formica over that. Not a big increase in cost, but (it seems to me) a better adhesion on the new cabinet top.
Waddayathink? A weekend's work (in this kitchen, two countertops), and maybe $350 in material.
If I'm off-base I'd love to hear why. No sense wasting time and money...
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Oops. Less than $350. I was still thinking the 3/4 MDF.
Maybe $200... I'm talking about two 8 foot long countertops.
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If you're going to layer additional mdf, then you only need to remove enough glue to hold the MDF in place with new glue.
Be careful if you screw down the MDF however. The screws have to be counter sunk and you don't have much thickness for that. If the screws aren't countersunk you'll get pimpling after you lay down the laminate. The appropriate stapler/nailer _might_ be better, although you don't want nails are staples to just go right through 1/8" material.
But if you sand down the original substrate enough the new laminate will hold
Steve
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Sounds good. Thanks again.
djb
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I plan on the same thing and my idea is clean good with alcohol, sand the formica , contact cement and formica. Dont make a big deal of it.
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On Tue, 04 Apr 2006 20:32:09 -0600, Dave Balderstone

I'd rough up the existing counter top, then glue and screw 1/4 inch plywood on top, then the sheet goods over that.
Ken
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Thanks! I'll do some ciphering on that scenario.
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We had new installed over old and it worked fine, the guy sanded the old before he glued the new down over the old, seems to be holding up fine thats been a few years now.
Tom

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There is No point to removing old formica, or adding thickness with new wood, or all the added labor.
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Dave Balderstone wrote:

Go to the source:
http://www.formica.com/publish/site/na/us/en/index/laminate/documents.GnFParSys.0031.DownloadFile.File.tmp/4%20Resurf%20Tech.pdf
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