Laminate tops

Avoid high temperatures – laminate is unharmed by temperatures up to 310F / 154C and will therefore withstand a spillage of hot water without discolouration or blistering. Objects such as casserole dishes, pans and cake tins taken from a direct source of heat should NOT be placed directly on to the laminate, a heat resistant mat or pot stand should always be used. Laminate surfaces will burn if direct heat is applied (so burning cigarettes should never be left on the worktop).

Protect your worktop joints – kettles, coffee machines, fryers and other heat or damp source should not be positioned directly over worktop joints, as constant changes in temperature could lead to failure of the joint.

Things to do – when food is being cut, always use a chopping board. When clamping an appliance to the worktop, place a protective pad between the screw and the worktop edge. Laminate is a hard-wearing surface which can easily withstand the normal wear and tear associated with modern living, however no laminate is indestructible and common sense should be applied if unnecessary damage is to be avoided.

Avoid abrasive cleaners – do not use scouring powder, wire wool pads, bleaches or oven cleaners on laminate surfaces. Any spillages (like food colourings, concentrated fruit juices, hair dyes etc) should be wiped up as quickly as possible to minimise the risk of permanent staining.