How Much Will My Worktop Change And Move?

Recently I made an observation that over time things can change. There are varying factors, both causal and non-causal, that can play a part in this process. Sometimes there can be a large noticeable effect and other times the alterations are minimal. Positive or negative, most things are subject to these shifts. So what change can you expect to occur to your wooden worktop?

The answer is simple, not a lot. People worry that their worktop will move and/or deteriorate over time but the chances of this happening are minimal. This is because we do everything that we can to prevent this from occurring. Although timber is hygroscopic and will absorb or release moisture according to its environment, we take a great amount of time to dry the timber correctly. Not only do we dry the timber ourselves but we also achieve unusually low moisture contents averaging around 7%. This is comparatively less than standard European timber that is typically dried to around 13%. Once the timber has been glued, machined and delivered, we would expect the moisture of our timber to increase slightly to 8.5-9.0%. During the winter months we would expect the moisture to settle at about 8% moisture, and in the summer around 9.0-9.5% depending on how wet the summer is.

Alongside these precautionary measures taken during the drying process we also offer a pre-oiling service that gives the worktops an overall protective barrier which helps to minimise any moisture movement. This coupled with the surface treatment of finishing oil gives the best possible protection for your worktop.

We use kiln dried timber, and a rule of thumb is that a 5% change in moisture will result in a 1% change in width dimension. Therefore if any movement were to occur it would be extremely minimal and would go virtually unnoticed. In a 640mm wide worktop there wouldn’t be more movement than 1-2mm.

You can therefore be rest assured that when you order a worktop from ourselves that you are getting not only the highest quality timber but also the most cared for timber that you can buy.

Customers also become concerned about the deterioration of their wooden worktop. They worry that in a year or so it will rot or turn black. This is something that shouldn’t happen to your worktop. Instances like this are extremely rare and only occur when the worktop has not been looked after and maintained. It is important that you look after your worktop with maintenance coats of oil and by cleaning up any spillages, including water, as quickly as possible. For more in depth information please look at a previous blog that I wrote; ‘How easy is it to maintain a wooden worktop?’, that is solely on this matter. Here you will find all the information you need to look after your worktop and will leave you feeling confident that a wooden worktop is for you.

As we are all aware, things can and do change. However, one of the luxuries of timber is that this change is relatively in your control. Although a natural material, if it is cared for appropriately you can make sure that any changes that do occur are so slight that you won’t even be aware that they have happened.