Buyer’s Guide to Wood Countertops

Buyers Guide

Interested in solid hardwood countertops? We’re here to help

We’ve traveled the world to learn the unvarnished truth about wood, granite, stainless steel and all other types of countertops. In this guide, we pledge to bring this same truth to you.

Let’s begin with a couple of important facts:

  • Science has proven that wood countertops are perfectly safe in the kitchen. Multiple university studies have concluded that wood contains certain properties that are proven to be very effective at destroying more than 98% of common food-borne bacteria. In fact, wood is more food-prep-safe than granite, marble, quartz or stainless steel, because a wooden surface is actively anti-bacterial; but this is only true if the correct wood finish is chosen.
  • Choosing the right finish for your wood countertop can save you a lot of hard work in upkeep. The only wood tops that require constant upkeep are those that have the wrong type of finish.
  • Wood tops advertised as “waterproof” and “permanent” have significant downsides that you need to be aware of before you purchase.
  • Food-Safe and Food-Prep-Safe are two very different things. “Food-safe” surfaces aren’t antibacterial. Remember, food-borne bacteria can be transported by meats and vegetables.

We’ve condensed the detail of this into our downloadable Consumer Guide. You may also pick up a free printed version of this Guide at your local CafeCountertops dealer.


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COVID-19: Disinfecting your wood countertop

Please use only the correct products and practices when disinfecting your wood countertop, or you might ruin the finish.

CafeCountertops has done extensive testing to confirm what our tech experts had already advised. Firstly, your wood countertop is a lean, mean bacteria-chomping machine in its own right. The only cleaning method we can officially recommend is to wash your countertop once a week with our Gentle Wood Wash (available on Amazon). This ph-neutral soap will clean the top properly without harming the finish.

If you must use a disinfectant, we can’t guarantee you won’t harm your finish, but our testing did reveal certain best practices. Spray disinfectants such as Lysol and Microban are preferable to harsh cleaners. MODERATION is key. Lightly spray the surface, wait only the absolute minimum recommended time for disinfection (typically 30 seconds), then rinse the surface thoroughly with a damp cloth, then dry with a towel. Wait a minimum of one week between treatments.